Monday, 12 March 2012

I Fall in Love at Groznjan

Groznjan is a little hill town within Medieval castle walls.  Motovun is amazing, Hum is delicious in its tiny quaintness - Groznjan stole my heart.

My apologies go to my husband - whom I love dearly.  I mean no disrespect.

But oh, how I love Groznjan!

In the 1950's, this town was all but deserted.  Then, a small band of artists decided to make their homes here, and it became a colony of art and music that has flourished to the present time.  Packed with art shops and painting galleries and musician's studios, summer brings flocks of tourists to feed on the poetry and spirit of art energy flowing in Groznjan's very veins.

Summer concerts are commonly offered, which send pure notes of musical manna echoing among the stone cottages and shops.  Artists flaunt their wares along every secret side street.   Dainty inner squares sport magical pathways sprouting off in multiple directions.  I was often conflicted, because each inviting alleyway was more delightful than the last, and I didn't want to miss anything!                                                    

An art-shopper's paradise, the jewellery, pottery, paintings, and sculptures produced in Groznjan are a tempting mix indeed.

Cute little courtyards are lazily watched by a stunning variety of shuttered and lace-draped windows, each more beautiful than the last.  Cobbled and dotted with a myriad of stone benches and pots of flowers, it was pure heaven to wander among the ancient stones under the Mediterranean sun.

This charmer was for rent!  I was mesmerized by its character, its position overlooking a garden on the edge of the hill itself.  I could imagine staying here for the summer, rubbing shoulders with gifted artisans, relaxing and enjoying a fresh gelato while listening to violins at dusk.  That mental picture is so delicious!

Even late in the season (mid-November), there were still visitors here.  Many shops had closed for the season, but the ones which were open were lots of fun to browse through.

We ate a picnic lunch at the bottom of the hill while the streets above were being swept clean for guests.  We thought we might have to bypass the town altogether (we were on a tight schedule that day) but waited.  Am I ever glad we did!

Even the sewer grates of the town were pretty - as I took some photos of them, I was laughing to myself.  I've never taken pictures of sewer grates at home!

One more detail of interest to note: the cutest ATM machine in the world is in Groznjan.  Recessed into a stone wall and down several stone steps from the street level, even the business side of the town was pretty!
Being an artist myself, the idea of an artisan village was  new and refreshing and fascinating to me.  The hilltop perch, the Medieval castle walls, the artsy-craftsy feel, the relaxed atmosphere, the charm of the streets - all will draw me back for another visit to the town that stole my heart.

1 comment:

  1. I just have this thought that that's a place where great artists born.