Our Kostrena peninsula is about 10 kilometers long, with a mild slope toward the sea coast. Along its length there are many beautiful beaches which are visited by thousands of swimmers during the summer months. The most famous and most popular are the beaches in Žurkovo Bay, then Smokvino, Svežanj, Spužvina, Podražica, Nova voda and Perilo.
Sweet water springs
The sea along the Kostrena coast is extraordinarily clean, but also one or two degrees colder, therefore, the average summer sea temperature is 22°C. This is due to many sweet water springs of which the biggest ones are Perilo in Žurkovo Bay, Stara voda, Perilo below places called Paveki and Perilo in Podurinj Bay. Until the mid 20th century those four springs were used for clothes washing. Women from nearby villages used to come to the springs with baskets filled with clothes and washed their clothes singing and chatting along.
Kostrena is an old, popular seaside town mentioned for the first time at the beginning of the 15th century. In 1874 it gained its municipal independence for the first time. It lasted only two years. It is divided in two parts: St. Lucija and St. Barbara, with names inspired by the names of the two churches situated on its territory.
Kostrena is situated in close vicinity of Rijeka, surrounded by Martinšćica and the Bay of Bakar. Our Kostrena peninsula is about 10 kilometers long, with a mild slope toward the sea coast. Along its length there are many beautiful beaches which are visited by thousands of swimmers during the summer months. The most famous and most popular are the beaches in Žurkovo Bay, then Smokvino, Svežanj, Spužvina, Podražica, Nova voda and Perilo.
Kostrena consists of twenty settlements many of which are named after the families that used to inhabit them. Nowadays, the largest number of inhabitants live in Vrh Martinšćica, Glavani, Sv. Lucija, Rožmanići and Paveki.
The area is marked by the characteristic karst area with the Mediterranean flora, familiar Kostrena dry stone walls, and a mild climate which sometimes changes due to the strong gusts of gale.
The whole existence of Kostrena and Kostrena people is based on the sea element, and the maritime affairs have been their base orientation ever since the name Kostrena was mentioned for the first time. Kostrena has given many well known captains, among which is Pavao Randić who was the first person to sail across the Suez Canal before it was opened. Erazmo Bernard Tićac participated as a chief architect in the building of “Savanah”, a trader driven by nuclear power. Kuzma Franelić contributed to the fame and courage of our seamen through his participation in the rescue of “Titanic” passengers. Together with the famous captains and ship-builders, during the second part of the l9th century the ship-owners from Kostrena sv. Barbara owned 20 ships, while they had shares in 48. At the same time the ship-owners from Kostrena sv. Lucija owned 13 ships and had shares in 31. Unfortunately, at that time over 200 Kostrena seamen were forever lost in the darkness of the big blue.
Kostrena tends to its cultural and social life and organizes events such as Autumn in Kostrena, Spring in Kostrena, summer events, Municipality Days. In winter the Kostrena Carnival is held in the Narodna čitaonica Hall (Peoples Library), while Špažićari Carnival group represents Kostrena at the International Carnival parade in Rijeka every year.
There are a lot of clubs connected and active in the sea activities today in the Municipality and they are achieving significant results internationally. Among the famous organisations which are known outside Croatia are the Sailing Club JK Galeb, Undersea Activities Club KPA Kostrena and Sport Fishing Club ŠRD Kostrena, being the oldest organisation in the area. Kostrena people are also proud of its Football Club NK Pomorac.
Kostrena’s archaeological heritage
On the highest hills, over the Municipality of the Kostrena settlement, we can find the prehistoric Solin and Sopalj castles. Solin hill with remains of the archaeological site is located on the north-western edge of Kostrena, above the deep Martinšćica Bay and Sušačka draga valley. A great position from which a panoramic view opens up to the eastern parts of the city of Rijeka was occupied even at the end of the Neolithic Age, whilst the colony lasted during the Chalcolithic (during the fourth and third millennium BC).
Kostrena caves and holes
Under the stone surface and under the feet of the numerous visitors to Kostrena and its inhabitants is a hidden underground world. Numerous cold submarine springs located close to the shore, springs of fresh water under the sea’s surface give the hint of numerous fissures in the underground area where fresh water from the hinterland finds its way towards the sea shore.