48 hours in Rijeka – A 2 day Itinerary

I’ve spent a lot of time travelling around Europe and especially in Croatia. One place I absolutely love is Rijeka. Whether you want to explore the city center, go for a nature walk, or just relax on the beach, there’s something for everyone in Rijeka.

After talking to many fellow travellers who weren’t sure what to do in Rijeka, I put together this two-day itinerary that will help get you started. Come along with me and I’ll show you the best places to check out!

Rijeka, Croatia is a charming coastal city that seamlessly blends rich history with a lively modern vibe.

This hidden gem on the Adriatic coast is the third largest city in Croatia and offers visitors an amazing experience with its beautiful architecture, stunning landscapes and vibrant culture.

If you are planning a trip to Rijeka and want to make the most of your visit, follow this suggested 2 Day Itinerary for Rijeka to immerse yourself in the city’s highlights.

RIJEKA, CROATIA - A panorama of Rijeka city and the bay, with Croatian National Theater in the center and the harbour in the distance at the sunset. a View from the upper town, in the summer

The best time to visit Rijeka is during the spring (April to June) or autumn (September to October).

The weather is mild and the city tends to be less crowded. When looking for somewhere to stay in Rijeka, there are diverse accommodation options to suit all preferences.

Consider staying in the city centre/old town for easy access to all of the Rijeka attractions. Alternatively, stay in Trsat if you are after peaceful surroundings and stunning views.

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Overview Of 2 Rijeka Itinerary

Here is a brief overview of what to do for 2 days in Rijeka:

Day 1 in Rijeka

  • Coffee at Cafe Bar Primo
  • Sightsee the City Clock Tower
  • Explore The Poke Computer Museum – no pic
  • Enjoy lunch at The Rijeka Central Market and Fish Market
  • Go for a hike in Risnjak National Park
  • Wine and Dine at Bistro Mornar
  • Enjoy an evening at The Croatian National Theatre

Day 2i n Rijeka

  •  Breakfast at Trsat Castle
  • Discover The Natural History Museum – no pic
  • Take a lunch break at Aquila Food & Wine
  • Explore Učka Nature Park
  • Dine at Bodega Grill & Beer
Trsat and Rijeka aerial panoramic view, historic old town in Kvarner bay of Croatia

Day 1 in Rijeka

Coffee at Cafe Bar Primo

Grab your morning coffee at Cafe Bar Primo. This cafe is trendy and inviting and offers a delightful experience for coffee enthusiasts.

With its warm and stylish interior, friendly staff and expertly brewed coffee, it is the perfect spot to enjoy a cup of delicious coffee before you start your day.

Sightsee the City Clock Tower

Around the corner from Cafe Bar Primo, you will find Gradska Ura, the City Clock Tower. This is a historic landmark that holds cultural significance and serves as a timekeeper for the city.

With its intricate details and commanding presence, it stands as a symbol of Rijeka’s rich heritage. It is open 24 hours a day. The tower’s chimes and rhythmic ticking add charm to daily life, while its central location makes it a popular meeting point.

Tour Pick
Rijeka, Croatia - City Clock Tower and Korzo, the main promenade in Rijeka, Croatia. Shopping street in town center with shops, cafes and walking tourists on a sunny day.

Walking Cultural Tour

  • 2.5 – 4 hours 
  • Private tour
  • Local guide
City of Rijeka clock tower and central square panorama Kvarner bay Croatia

Explore The Peek & Poke Computer Museum

Afterwards head over to the Peek & Poke Computer Museum. This is a fascinating destination for technology enthusiasts and history buffs.

This unique museum showcases a remarkable collection of vintage computers, showcasing the evolution of computing technology over the years.

When you step into the museum, you will be transported back in time to the early days of computing.

The museum houses a diverse range of exhibits, featuring iconic computer models, gaming consoles, peripherals and other technological artefacts from different eras.

As you explore the exhibits, you will have the opportunity to learn about the groundbreaking innovations that have shaped the computer industry.

Enjoy lunch at The Rijeka Central Market and Fish Market

Grab yourself some lunch at The Rijeka Central Market before you discover the unique shopping opportunities it has to offer.

The Rijeka Central Market, located in the heart of the city, is a vibrant and bustling hub where you can experience a lively atmosphere and indulge in a wide array of fresh produce, local delicacies and unique goods.

The market is also a treasure trove of local crafts, artisanal products and unique souvenirs. From handmade jewellery and clothing to traditional ceramics and artwork, you will discover an array of one of a kind items that reflect the local culture and craftsmanship of the region.

This bustling market is a true reflection of Rijeka’s culture, offering a glimpse into the daily life and culinary traditions of the region.

The Fish Market in Rijeka is located next to the Rijeka Central Market. This is where you can discover a wide variety of fresh seafood. Located near the waterfront, the market showcases a colourful array of fish and shellfish, offering a glimpse into the maritime culture of the region.

Engaging with passionate vendors and exploring the market’s diverse offerings creates an authentic and memorable experience. It is a must visit destination for seafood enthusiasts, culinary explorers and anyone seeking to immerse themselves in Rijeka’s vibrant food scene.

RIJEKA, CROATIA -  Market seller, old senior merchant woman  selling flowers in front of ribarnica rijeka, the covered indoor fish market, a monument of the city, in Rijecka trznica.

Go for a hike in Risnjak National Park

Approximately an hour’s drive from Rijeka is Risnjak National Park. Spend the afternoon in this stunning national park, a must visit if you are visiting Rijeka.

It takes its name from Mount Risnjak, the park’s highest peak, which stands at an impressive elevation of 1,528 meters. The park’s rugged terrain is characterised by dense forests, rushing rivers and stunning mountain views, providing a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

For avid hikers and nature enthusiasts, Risnjak National Park offers a network of well marked trails catering to different skill levels.

Whether you are embarking on a leisurely stroll or seeking a challenging ascent to the mountaintops, there is a trail for every adventurer. The park’s peaks provide panoramic views that stretch as far as the eye can see, rewarding hikers with unforgettable memories.

During winter, Risnjak National Park becomes a beautiful snowy wonderland, attracting skiers and winter sports lovers. The park’s landscapes are covered in a pristine layer of snow, providing the perfect backdrop for outdoor activities.

Cross country skiers and winter enthusiasts flock to the park to enjoy its scenic trails and slopes, embracing the thrilling adventures that the snowy season brings.

Panorama from Risnjak National Park in the Republic of Croatia

Wine and Dine at Bistro Mornar

Before the theatre, enjoy an evening meal at Bistro Mornar. It is a charming and cosy restaurant that offers a delightful dining experience with its delicious cuisine and welcoming ambience.

From freshly prepared seafood specialities to hearty meat dishes and vegetarian options, the menu provides a fusion of traditional Croatian flavours with a modern twist.

The bistro’s warm interior, attentive staff and quality wine selection create the perfect setting for a memorable pre-theatre meal.

RIJEKA, CROATIA -Croatian supporters in crowd at the terrace of a bar watching a football match of the Euro 2020 2021 with the Croatian Football team playing.

Enjoy an evening at The Croatian National Theatre

To end the first day of your 48 hours in Rijeka, enjoy an evening at the Croatian National Theatre. It is a renowned cultural institution that was established in 1860, the theatre has played a significant role in the city’s artistic and theatrical scene ever since.

This theatre showcases a diverse range of performances, including opera, ballet, drama and musical productions. With its grand architecture and rich history, attending a performance at the Croatian National Theatre is a cultural experience not to be missed.

Whether you have a passion for opera, a love for ballet, or an appreciation for theatrical masterpieces, the theatre’s repertoire offers something for everyone.

Croatian national theater in Rijeka square aerial view, fountain and architecture, Kvarner bay in Croatia

Day 2 in Rijeka

Breakfast at Trsat Castle

To begin the second part of your weekend in Rijeka, head straight up to Trsat Castle. Perched atop a hill overlooking Rijeka, Trsat Castle is a 13th century medieval fortress that offers panoramic views of the city and the Adriatic Sea.

With its rich history and diverse architectural styles, the castle is a great destination for history enthusiasts and cultural explorers. The castle is open from 9 am and is free entry.

Inside Trsat Castle you will find Vintage Cafe, a fantastic spot to enjoy breakfast. This cafe offers a unique dining experience in a charming and historic setting. Nestled within the castle’s walls, the cafe provides breathtaking views of the city.

With its vintage-inspired decor, delicious food and beverages and a cosy atmosphere, it is the perfect place to relax and enjoy a moment of peace before you begin a busy day.

Rijeka, Croatia - The courtyard of Trsat castle in Rijeka. Visitors enjoying the view over the city and having food at the restaurant.

Discover The Natural History Museum

Next, head over to The Natural History Museum. Take a fun journey through the geological, zoological and botanical realms of the Croatian region.

From dinosaur fossils to insights into local wildlife and the importance of conservation, the museum provides an educational and immersive experience for all ages.

With temporary exhibitions and workshops, it promotes a deeper understanding of the natural world and encourages environmental awareness. The museum is great for travellers on a budget as it only costs approximately £2 for entry.

Take a lunch break at Aquila Food & Wine

Aquila Food & Wine in Rijeka is a great spot to have lunch. With its cosy and friendly atmosphere, exceptional service and carefully crafted menu, the restaurant is a haven for food and wine enthusiasts.

The restaurant uses locally sourced ingredients to create traditional and contemporary flavours that celebrate the region.

Rijeka, Croatia - City Clock Tower and Korzo, the main promenade in Rijeka, Croatia. Shopping street in town center with shops, cafes and walking tourists on a sunny day.

Explore Učka Nature Park

Spend the afternoon at Učka Nature Park, a 45 minute drive away from Rijeka. It is situated in the beautiful Istria region and is a pristine natural oasis. It showcases the stunning landscapes and rich biodiversity of Croatia.

This protected park covers an expansive area, encompassing the majestic Učka mountain range, forests, streams and diverse flora and fauna.

At the heart of Učka Nature Park is Mount Učka, the highest peak in the region, reaching an elevation of 1,396 meters.

The mountain offers breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes, including the Adriatic Sea, picturesque Istrian towns and the lush greenery of the park itself.

Hiking enthusiasts will find a network of well marked trails that lead to the summit, providing a rewarding and invigorating outdoor experience.

Apart from hiking, the park is ideal for mountain biking, rock climbing and paragliding, providing adrenaline pumping adventures for outdoor enthusiasts. The park also features several picnic areas and rest spots, allowing you to relax and soak in your surroundings.

Hiking trails, forest paths and bicycle roads in the Ucka Nature Park, Croatia

Dine at Bodega Grill & Beer

Enjoy your final evening for your 48 hrs in Rijeka by dining at Bodega Grill. This restaurant offers delicious grilled specialities and a wide selection of beers all with a lively atmosphere.

It is the perfect spot for food and beer enthusiasts. The menu features mouthwatering dishes like steaks, burgers, ribs and seafood, all prepared with high quality ingredients.

The restaurant’s extensive beer selection includes both local and international options, catering to various tastes.

Tour ideas for 2 days in rijeka

Postojna Cave & Predjama Castle from Rijeka

Just a short drive from Rijeka lies a remarkable destination that will take you on a journey into the depths of natural wonders and ancient fortresses. Combine your visit to Rijeka with a day trip to explore the world famous Postojna Cave and the intriguing Predjama Castle, both located in Slovenia.

Prepare to be amazed as you step into the mystical underworld of the Postojna Cave, one of the best known caves in the world. With its intricate web of tunnels and breathtaking formations, this subterranean wonderland will leave you in awe.

A short distance from the Postojna Cave, you will find the captivating Predjama Castle, a unique architectural marvel built within the mouth of a cave. As the only preserved cave castle in Europe, this medieval fortress stands as a testament to centuries of history and intrigue.

PREDJAMA, SLOVENIA - Predjama Castle in Predjama, Slovenia. It is a landmark Renassiance castle in Slovenia.

Golden Island of Krk from Rijeka

Discover the “Golden Island” that is Krk Island, nestled in the scenic Kvarner Bay just off the coast of Rijeka. Embark on a memorable tour as you travel across to this island, where picturesque villages and stunning beaches await your exploration.

Immerse yourself in the island’s rich history as you admire iconic landmarks like the Krk Cathedral and Frankopan Castle.

Take leisurely walks along the scenic seafront promenades, soaking in the breathtaking views and capturing memorable photos along the way. Indulge your taste buds with a delicious lunch (at your own expense) featuring the flavours of Krk cuisine and wine.

Aerial view with Vrbnik village, Krk island, Croatia

Lipica Stud Farm & Skocjan Caves from Rijeka

Embark on an extraordinary day trip from Rijeka, where you will have the opportunity to visit two of Slovenia’s most renowned attractions.

Cross the border and delve into history and natural wonders as you embark on a guided tour of the iconic Lipica Stud Farm and the breathtaking Škocjan Caves, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Begin your adventure with a guided walking tour of the historic Lipica Stud Farm, the oldest of its kind in the world and the birthplace of the prestigious Lipizzaner white horses. Learn about the farm’s rich equestrian heritage, witness the graceful horses up close, and marvel at their exceptional beauty.

Next, prepare to be mesmerized by the awe-inspiring Škocjan Caves, a natural wonderland that will take your breath away.

Embark on a guided tour through the cave system, as you navigate the underground river and marvel at the dramatic stalactites that adorn the chambers.

Experience the power and beauty of nature as you walk across suspended bridges and witness the grandeur of this UNESCO listed site.

Beautiful Skocjan Caves Natural Heritage Site in Slovenia

Final Thoughts: 2 day intinerary for Rijeka Croatia

In conclusion, Rijeka, Croatia offers an incredible blend of history, culture and natural beauty. From its charming coastal cityscape to its iconic landmarks such as the City Clock Tower and Trsat Castle, Rijeka boasts a rich heritage that is waiting to be explored.

The city’s vibrant markets, including the Fish Market, offer a sensory experience that showcases the region’s culinary traditions and local flavours. Nature lovers can venture to the Učka Nature Park, Risnjak National Park, and the Golden Island of Krk to immerse themselves in breathtaking landscapes and outdoor adventures.

Additionally, Rijeka’s cultural scene is enriched by institutions like the Croatian National Theatre and the Natural History Museum, which offer a glimpse into the city’s artistic and scientific heritage.

Whether you are wandering the historic streets or embarking on day trips to nearby attractions like the Lipica Stud Farm and Škocjan Caves, Rijeka promises an enriching and memorable travel experience.

With its welcoming atmosphere, fascinating landmarks and a blend of tradition and modernity, Rijeka invites you to uncover its hidden treasures and create lifelong memories.

Recommended tours in Rijeka

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