If you wish to discover the places emerged along the roman road which once was connecting Pula and Liburnia, choose the Flanatic track and depart from Marčana – a town of about 1.000 inhabitants, just 15 km distant from Pula. Formed on the fundaments of a prehistoric hill-fort and an antique village, during the middle age Marčana was heavily affected by several epidemics so, with the intention to repopulate it, in the 16th century the Venetians brought almost 200 Greek and afterward Dalmatian families. If you ride through it, you’ll notice that the place is mostly weaved with rural architecture, with a line of family houses with cured gardens and fields with the only exception represented by the slightly protruded old school building with the clock and a cistern with two water wells in the sole town center.
If you ride further, you get to Krnica, a small place with barely 300 inhabitants. Sited on a 195 meters altitude above the sea level, with a history similar to that of Marčana, considering that after it was affected by several epidemics in the 16th century, it was populated and reconstructed by numerous families arrived from the surroundings of Zadar. If you ride through Krnica, do not miss to see the nice building with baroque elements and the Parish church of St. Roch from 1631, and if you are hungry, get down till the sea and the so called Port of Krnica discover why this place is said as the one where are eaten the best shrimps of the Adriatic.
After Krnica, we ride towards Rakalj. Built on the western bank of the Raša bay, few chilometers distant from the sea, Rakalj was mentioned already in the 12th century and it was mostly known in the past by the traditional istrian pottery (production of terra-cotta containers). If you ride through it, you’ll find out that, wherever you turn from the miniature town square with the beautiful Loredan palace, almost all the stone houses on both sides of their iron entrance doors have diamond shaped doorjamb incisions, typical for this area. Apart from the Parish church of the Nativity of Mary at the cemetery from the 15th century, with a nice gothic, stone custody with two angels from the year 1425, in Rakalj by no means do not miss the church of St. Agnes which is sited slightly outer the place, and risen on an absolutely breathtaking point from which sprawls a unique view to the Kvarner bay and the islands.
Lonely on a rock over the Raša bay, with two cypresses in between the fragrant sage and bird's-foot trefoil bushes, nearby the remains of the walls of the adjacent old castle, St. Agnes is definitely one of the most beautiful views of entire Istria and one of those archetype places which remain saved in the memory, for a long time after seeing them. Refreshed by the swish fragrances of aromatic plants, continue then over Hrboki and Divšići back to Marčana, from where your Flanatic adventure has just began.