The history of the city of Izola

City of Izola – town of fish, wine and events

The history of the city of Izola and the origin of its original name dates back to antiquity: Aegida is a Greek-Etruscan name reminiscent of the aegis (shield) of the Greek goddess of wisdom and knowledge Athena. The ancient Roman name of the town.

Where Izola stands today was first settled by the Romans, who retained power in Istria for more than half a millennium, as the foundations of the rustic villa with mosaics and the remains of the port are preserved in Simon's Bay. During the migration of peoples in the 6th century, the Romanesque population took refuge from the interior in coastal Istrian towns. At that time, a small settlement of Haliaetum (Alieto) was probably formed on the island.

Almost until the end of the 13th century, Izola was in the hands of the Aquileian patriarchs, when their power began to weaken, and Izola, which worked hard for independence, recognized Venetian supremacy.

After the collapse of the Venetian Republic, it fell for a short time under Napoleon's France. After Napoleon's defeat in Russia, Izola remained under Austrian rule until the end of the First World War. Between 1945 and 1954, it was part of Zone B of the Free Territory of Trieste. It then passed under Yugoslavia.

After the independence of Slovenia, the municipality of Izola replaced the old municipal coat of arms from 1987 with a new one in 1995. The new coat of arms depicts a white dove with an olive branch in its beak as a sign of peace and security. The history of the town of Izola as well as other coastal towns is very diverse and diverse.

The inhabitants of the original settlement were fishermen and farmers (winegrowers, olive growers) until three fish canning factories appeared at the end of the 19th century; Arigoni, Ampelea and later Delamaris. The post-war economic and population growth of Izola was based on the toy industry, food industry and shipbuilding.

Today, Izola is based on the development of tourism, characterised by its varied beaches, water activities and traditional events. In Izola you will experience a genuine contact with the Mediterranean.

If you head to the beach towards Bele Skale between Izola and Strunjan, you'll feel like you're on a secluded island in the Adriatic. In the centre of Izola, you'll find well-kept beaches at the lighthouse by the Delfin Hotel and in San Simon, which is partly sandy and therefore suitable for children.

We would also like to highlight traditional events such as the Wine, Oil and Fish Festival, which marks the start of the tourist season. Local producers are showcased at individual stalls in a beautiful street in the town centre.

A fishing festival called Ribiški praznik, with a tradition of more than 40 years. It is held every third weekend in August. It is a feast with fish cuisine, performances by musicians.

"Fešta Pedočev", a fairly new event in June. On the plates of restaurants and taverns in Izola, you will taste the shells at a single promotional price

The picturesque Izola countryside, with its many valleys and long hills, can be discovered in the many local tavernas and tourist farms, most with a beautiful view of the Gulf of Trieste. The hinterland of Izola offers countless opportunities for wandering and discovering the natural beauty of the Istrian hills, adorned with charming stone houses and old churches. You can explore it by bike, by car or on foot. Izola is a town with many attractions, including the remains of the narrow-gauge railway, which was first used by trains in 1902. For 33 years, this line linked the towns of Trieste and Poreč. However, it was condemned to closure in 1935 because it was unprofitable. Today, it is a well-maintained cycle route linking Koper with Portoroz.

Along the coastal road, there is another interesting spot where the "Italian Titanic", the Rex, sank. In September 1944, the ship ran aground in the bay between Koper and Izola, where it was attacked by Allied aircraft. The Rex burned for four days... The remains of the ship were later scrapped and taken to an ironworks, leaving only the memory of the ship.

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