Good food and drink are vital ingredients of any successful holiday. Rabac as a tourist destination owes its fame to the excellent hotel service, superb cooks and the gastronomical delights of the region. Delicious fresh fish, lobster, langoustines and other shellfish are characteristic features of the menus along with the country cuisine, whose particular forte is homemade past with various meat sauces.
Fuži (local variety of pasta) or njoki (gnocchi) with game sauce, krafi (sweet and savory cheese filled pasta parcels) with sauce, or pasutice (local pasta variety) with dried cod are only a few of the many recipes we learned from our grandmothers. The famous manestra (a hearty broth of beans with corn or barley), homemade sausages, zarebnjak (dried loin of pork) with sauerkraut, Pršut (dried ham), cheese, home-baked bread and local wine are the regional specialties served in typical konoba (traditional meeting places built in stone with a large fireplace, exposed beams and rustic wooded furniture). A number of restaurants offer international as well as local food and we are sure that you will be tempted to get to know better this area through the flavor of its cuisine.Villas in Labin - Rabac
Today, Rabac is a well-known tourist resort. By the middle of the 19th century, it was a small fishermen village with hardly ten houses. Due to the beautiful bay and splendid, tame surroundings, it soon attracted first visitors. In 1876, Richard Francis Burton, an English writer and a passionate traveler, was among the first tourists who stayed in Rabac. Having seen Rabac and other places on the Istrian coast, he wrote a book of the same title ‘The Istrian coast’, describing, among other things, the beauties and charm of Rabac. At that time Rabac witnessed the building of the first villas.
The most well-known was the villa belonging to the Prohaska family, Czechs by origin, who were distinguished tradesmen from Rijeka. Unfortunately, the villa was destroyed during the Second World War, but one of the most attractive locations in Rabac still bears the name of Prohaska. ‘Quarnaro’, the first hotel in Rabac, was opened on 11th June, 1889 in the house of the Viskovic family situated close to the present ‘Orlando’ atelier. The hotel had only a few rooms and a pub on the ground floor. Kaiser, the Austrian officer, who was a regular client of that first hotel, later bought Dubrova, an estate close to Labin. Today, Dubrova is hosting the Mediterranean Sculptors Symposium and is becoming ever more famous for its magnificent park of sculptures. The chronicle writers would point out yet another curiosity – at the beginning of this century in 1907, Prince Ferdinand, the Austro-Hungarian heir to the throne, visited Rabac and was saluted by people who had gathered in the harbor.
The inhabitants of Rabac were skilled fishermen, seamen and owners of some ten sailboats which were either destroyed in the maelstrom of the Second World War or pushed back by modern ships. The first larger hotel was built in the period of the Italian government in 1925 in the very center of Rabac and was called ‘Trieste’ -its name today is ‘Primorje’. The capacity of the hotel could not meet the ever growing demand of tourists, mainly from the northern parts of Italy. Hence the more intensive development of private accommodation took place. Ten years after ‘Trieste’, the ‘Dopolavoro’ hotel was built – presently the ‘Jadran’ restaurant.
Tourism in Istria, as well as in Rabac, began to develop during the sixties, when this small resort, due to its natural beauty , got the flattering name of ‘The Pearl of the Kvarner Bay’. Since then, all existing hotels, apartments, camping sites and the majority of the private houses have been built. Among the visitors, for years now, the most numerous have been Germans and Austrians followed by English and Italians. Not so long ago, Rabac could accommodate in one day even 11.000 visitors, mainly foreign, and several thousand bathers from Labin and its surroundings.
The Istrian peninsula ‘terra magica’ lies on the Adriatic sea which is the closest warm sea to the heart of Europe. Rabac, ‘The Pearl of the Kvarner Bay’, is situated on the eastern part of the peninsula where the green of the pines and the Mediterranean vegetation flow into the whiteness’ of the sea. Rabac is one of the most frequented summer resorts of Istra and Croatia.
Just above Rabac, nestling on the top of the hill, there is old town of Labin – a stage to thousand years long history. The area of Labin, including Rabac is 128,6 km2 and has about 13.000 inhabitants.
The pearl of the Kvarner Bay Even though RABAC – this pearl of the Kvarner Bay can accommodate up to l0,000 tourists in hotels, camping sites, apartments and private accommodation, it still retains the spirit and atmosphere of the former fishing village. The string of beaches, tiny coves, small bays and lush Mediterranean vegetation; the numerous restaurants offering tasty local cuisine, fishermen and excursion boats leaving harbor at sunset, hospitable people with their gentle Istrian soul are interwoven with all of modern and cosmopolitan Europe seeking relaxation, sun, blue sea, tranquility and amusements to entertain their fancy.