If I had to name one downside to living in Rijeka, the first thing to come to mind would probably be the non-existence of green areas in the city centre. While countless other cities house vast parks and gardens providing refuge from the hectic traffic, noise and heat, we’re a bit… lacking in the urban oases department.
Enter Matija Vlačić Flacius Square, a charming location tucked away in the Old Town. Two years ago, this shabby little location was transformed into the so-called Tea Square (Čajni trg) as part of the project European Capital of Culture 2020. An initiative was formed to embellish several town squares with as much green as possible, aiming to increase the quality of life in the tightly packed urban sprawl.
It doesn’t take much to create a nice, cozy open space where people can enjoy a moment of quiet. A fresh coat of bright blue paint turned an entire side of a building into an eye-catching mural; the terrace of Samovar, a lovely tea and coffee bar, is now dotted with pots and barrels chock-full of plants and medicinal herbs. The Tea Square is a living, breathing garden in the open – a perfect place to sit in the shade and sip on a glass of cold lemonade.