The Marunada festival was inaugurated in 1973 and is held annually. It takes place around the time when maruni (plural for marun) are harvested. Maruni grow on the Opatija Riviera at the foot of Mount Učka. Compared to regular edible chestnuts, they are sweeter and larger. Maruni also have a lighter color and are easier to peel. Due to their high quality, maruni have been one of the most important exports in the region since the 17th century.
The main attraction of the festival is cooking and tasting of various dishes made from maruni. Roasted chestnuts, chestnut pie, cakes, pancakes, chestnut goulash, chestnut puree… These are only some of the traditional dishes made with maruni that you can enjoy if you ever visit the Marunada chestnut festival. In addition to numerous chestnut dishes, you can sample other specialties of the area such as medica (homemade honey brandy) and homemade wine that will keep you warm during slightly chilly autumn weather.
Of course, the program of the festival also includes a wide range of entertainment and cultural events for attendees of all ages. They include performances by local folklore groups and artists from all over Croatia, sporting events such as a fishing competition and a bocce tournament, a bike tour, a hiking your, exhibitions, etc. Of course, you can also buy local souvenirs that will remind you what a great time you’ve had at the Marunada festival.
The festival usually takes place on the last three weekends in October. The event typically kicks off in Liganj, then moves to Dobreć for the next weekend and culminates in Lovran a week later.