Monday, April 9, 2012

Ten things I like about Piran, Slovenia

View of Piran from the ramparts

Winter has come and gone, and spring has emerged bright with promise!  I can think of no better place to experience the beginning of spring than in Piran, Slovenia.  Red rooftops, narrow walkways, boats on the water.  A place to think and a place to discover.

My list of the best of Piran begins here...

Narrow walkways

Piran is a labyrinth of cobble stone paths, each with it's own character.  Where will you end up?  Take the path to find out.

A Piran path

Another way to the sea?


 Windows

I love windows because they offer a mystery.  What is inside?  What is outside? The windows of Piran are especially inviting.

Spring flowers on a window sill

An iron grate

A crumbling frame


The Ramparts

A walk along the ramparts above the city offers views and a sense of scale.

The view north

The northern tower

Sailboats on the water

When a sail catches the wind it's like watching a bird fly along the sea.  It's pretty dramatic!

Catching the wind

Sunset on the water

Saint George and the dragon

Saint George is the patron saint of Piran.  You can see images of George slaying the dragon throughout the city.  This image has always appealed to me.  Not sure why...

George in the square

George in the cathedral

City gates

There are many old gates to the city.  The dolpin gate is one of my favorites.

The dolphin gate

Above the gate

Stone faces

Almost everywhere you look there is a stone face looking back at you.  

On a facade 

Upon a column

At the point

Lions

The lion is everywhere in Piran - a symbol of strength and alertness.

Above a window

On a pillar

Supporting a balcony

Salt

Salt has been harvested and traded in and around Piran since the 800's.  You can still see the old salt pans in use today, and you can buy various grades of salt from the Soline shop on the main square of Piran.

In the Soline shop

Salt pans at Strujan

Letting the sea in

Fish and fishermen

At dawn and dusk you can see the fishermen line up along the point.  They bear the cold wind and waves to bring in a meal.

Enthusiastic fishermen

The fruit of the sea

The quality of light

Every space and time has a distinct quality of light.  The light in the early spring is bright - almost white - contrasting with the grey spring clouds.

The top of the campanile 

Budding branches in the afternoon light

Okay, so I had eleven, but were you really counting?  If you have ever been to Piran, you probably have your own list to share.

Happy Spring!
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