Piran is probably the most beautiful of Slovenia's coastal towns, perched on a tiny piece of land jutting into the sea. It feels more like an Italian coastal town, without all the Italian tourists, and for good reason: Piran was part of the Venetian empire from the late 13th century to the end of the 18th century.
There is a small airport 15 km away in Portorož, called Portorož international Airport. Although it is an international airport, there are relatively few flights from foreign states.
There is no train service to Piran. Nearest station is in Koper.
Frequent buses connect Piran to Izola, Koper (20 minutes), and Trieste (1 hour), and there is a free shuttle service to the adjacent resort of Portoroz. From Ljubljana, there are buses roughly hourly, taking 2-2½ hours for the journey depending on route. Schedules are available online.
Boat service is also available regularly from Venice.
During the summer there are 3-4 boats per day between Piran and Trieste. The journey time is around 1 hour.
Piran is very small and it takes 30 minutes to walk from one end to the other.
Cars are generally not allowed in the old town and even when they are it is not a lot of fun since the streets are very narrow and parking costs €24 per day. There is parking available outside the town centre. The biggest lot is along the waterfront at Fornače, but reserved only for local inhabitants and busses. At Fornače there is also a parking house with the same name, which costs about €17 per day; another isparking house Arze-, which costs €12 per day. The city provides a free shuttle bus to and from the parking lot Fornače and Tartinijev trg roughly every 15 minutes. See (in Slovene) or (in Italian).
- Tartinijev trg. The beautiful oval-shaped main square, with a statue of the famous violinist Giuseppe Tartini. This was once the marina, but after it silted up it was paved over with white stone.
- Venetian House. The red building on Tartinijev trg, is a fantastic example of gothic Venetian architecture and the oldest building on the square. Built by a rich Venetian merchant to house his mistress, spot the inscription between the upper windows: it says Lassa pur dir, or "let them talk".
- Sergej Mašera Maritime Museum, Cankerjevo nab 3, ☏ . Jul-Aug: Tu-Su 09:00-12:00, 18:00-21:00; Sep-Jun: Tu-Su 09:00-12:00, 15:00-18:00. Has several exhibits that tell the story of Piran's maritime history and culture.
- Church of St. George (Cerkev sv. Jurija). The inside is quite beautiful. Nice view of the city and harbour from the belltower.
- Watch the Sunset. Preferably from a bar on the waterfront with an aperitivo in hand.
- Swim. There is no beach, but you can swim in the sea from the many piers scattered about.
- Diving School (northern side of the town). Explore the clear Adriatic Sea.
- Climb to the top of the city walls (follow ulica IX.Korpusa up the hill from Tartinijev trg). Take in the view of the peninsula.
- Walk along the coastal path from the Church of St. George to Fiesa. About one kilometr3 each way.
Unlike many of the other towns along the Adriatic coast, there are few shops with postcards, souvenirs, football (soccer) jerseys, etc. There is a small shop about halfway up the hill on ulica IX.Korposa that advertises handmade Slovenian crafts. At the central square there is a shop where you can buy high quality sea salt from the local sea salt evaporation ponds.
Many of Piran's restaurants are found along the waterfront (Prešernovo nabrežje), with open air seating and great views. The food and service is generally good, but many of the restaurants tend to have similar menus (meat, fish, mixed grills, etc.) and similar prices. Restaurants away from the main waterfront area can be a bit cheaper. There are also a number of pizzerias and gelato shops scattered around the town. If you want fresh produce, there is sometimes a market behind the municipal building off Tartinjev trg.
- Fontana, Gallusova ulica 2 (on Trg 1.maja (May 1st Square)), ☏ . A small restaurant with a veranda that serves seafood and Slovenian dishes.
- Gostilnica, Prešernovo nabrežje, ☏ . Wide selection of seafood dishes. €10-20 for mains.
- Neptun, Župančičeva ulica 7, ☏ . 12:00-16:00 and 18:00-00:00. A small restaurant one street back from the harbour that specializes in seafood.
- Pavel, Prešernovo nabrežje, ☏ , . 11:00-00:00 in the summer. On the waterfront with tables indoors and outdoors. Serves a variety of meat and fish dishes. €8-16 for mains..
- Pizzeria Batana, Kidričevo nabrežje 4, ☏ . Pizzeria on the inner harbour.
- Pri Mari, Dantejeva 17 (close to the Fornače parking lot.), ☏ . Small restaurant that specializes in seafood. €8-16 for mains.
- Restaurant Miralonda, Stjenkova 1 (in the Hotel Piran), ☏ . Mixed menu with seating along the waterfront.
- Restaurant Riva, Gregorčičeva 43 (along the waterfront, almost at the tip of the peninsula), ☏ . Serves a variety of meat and fish dishes. €8-16 for mains.
- Tri Vdove, Prešernovo nabrežje 4, ☏ . Waterfront restaurant with a mix of meat and fish dishes. €8-16 for mains.
- Tri papige, Kidričevo nabrežje 4, ☏ . Night club.
With a shortage of hotel accommodation the best option can be to take a 'private room', (rent out a room in a local's house). Several local tourist agencies keep lists of such rooms and will book them for you. Don't expect the owners to speak English, but they are generally very helpful and are experienced in hospitality. Standards vary: sometimes you'll get towels for a shower, sometimes not. But regardless, it will certainly be an experience and a chance to meet some locals.
- Val Hostel, Gregorčičeva 38a, ☏ . Open year-round, this hostel has 22 rooms with 2, 3, and 4 beds per room. €25, breakfast included.
- Youth Hostel Piran, Vodopivceva 9, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Situated on a pedestrian area, right in the heart of the old part of town. All rooms have a TV. The bathroom and the kitchen is shared between 4 rooms. €22.
- [formerly dead link] Hotel Barbara Fiesa, Fiesa 68 (outside of the old town on the bay between Piran and Strunjan and near Portorož), ☏ . Air-con, 6 Superior rooms, 36 Plus rooms, all with balcony overlooking the sea/lake, phone, satellite TV, minibar, WC and shower. €55-60.
- Bed & Breakfast - Miracolo Di Mare, Tomšičeva 23, ☏ . Completely renovated B&B with 12 tastefully decorated double and twin rooms. All rooms have a satellite TV, WC and shower. Free WiFi access and bike rental. €70, breakfast included.
- Max Hotel, Ulica IX.Korpusa 26 (in the middle of the old town), ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. A small hotel with just 6 double rooms. All rooms have a TV, bathroom and shower. €70, breakfast included.
- Slovenian coastal towns: Portorož, Izola and Koper
- Divača and the Škocjan Caves - 1 hour away by car.
- Istria region of Croatia
- Trieste, Italy - 1 hour away
- Venice, Italy - 2½ hours away