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Izola ( ) is an old fishing town and a municipality in southwestern Sloveniamarker on the Adriaticmarker coast of the Istrian peninsulamarker. Its name originates from the Italian Isola, which means island.


An ancient Roman port and settlement known as Haliaetum stood to the southwest of the present town as early as the 2nd century BC. The town of Izola was established on a small island by refugees from Aquileiamarker in the 7th century . The coastal areas of Istria came under Venetianmarker influence in the 9th century. The settlement was first mentioned in writing as Insula in a Venetian document entitled Liber albus in 932AD. It became definitely the territory of the Republic of Venicemarker in 1267, and the centuries of Venetian rule left a strong and enduring mark on the region. The Venetian part of the peninsula passed to the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation in 1797 with the Treaty of Campo Formio, until the period of Napoleonic rule from 1805 to 1813 when Istria became part of the Illyrian provinces of the Napoleonic Empire. After this short period, during which Izola's walls were torn down and used to fill in the channel that separated the island from the mainland, the newly established Austrian Empiremarker ruled Istria until November 1918. Then Istria became part of the Kingdom of Italy, until Italian capitulation in September 1943, whereupon control passed to Germany. Izola was liberated by a naval unit from Kopermarker at the end of April 1945. After the end of World War II, Izola was part of Zone B of the provisionally independent Free Territory of Trieste; after the de facto dissolution of the Free Territory in 1954 it was incorporated into Slovenia, then a part of Yugoslaviamarker. The newly defined Italo-Yugoslav border saw the migration of many people from one side to the other. In Izola's case, many Italian speakers chose to leave, and in their place Slovenian-speaking people from neighbouring villages settled in the town.

In 1820, a thermal spring was discovered in Izola, leading to the town's earliest forms of tourism. Between 1902 and 1935 the Parenzana, a narrow-gauge railway line connected the town to Triestemarker and Porečmarker (Parenzo until 1947). Today Izola has many hotels near the sea, a famous discothèque (Embassy of Gavioli) Ambasada Gavioli, many art galleries, summer concerts, street performances and a movie festival.


The municipality has 14,549 inhabitants. There are marginally more females (7,385) than males (7,164). By mother tongue, they identify themselves as Slovenes (12,059), Croatians (1,099), Italians (520) and Serbo-Croatians (562) with other smaller minorities.

Population by mother language, census 2002
Slovene 12,059 (71.14%)
Croatian 1,099 (7.94%)
Italian 520 (3.96%)
Serbo-Croatian 562 (3.86%)
Bosnian 537 (3.69%)
Serbian 385 (2,65%)
Macedonian 124 (0.85%)
Albanian 93 (0.64%)
Others and Unknown 970 (6.67%)
Total 14,549


The municipality of Izola-Isola is officially bilingual, with both Slovene and Italian as official languages

In addition to Izola town, the broader municipality includes the villages of Baredimarker, Cetoremarker, Dobravamarker, Jagodjemarker, Korte, Malijamarker, Nožedmarker, Šaredmarker.


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