Hum Croatia, The World’s Smallest Town

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Post author SJ

Written by our local expert SJ

Sarah-Jane has lived in Croatia for 10+ years. SJ, as she is known, has been traveling the Balkans & beyond since 2000. She now shares her passion for traveling with her husband & kids.

Hum Croatia, located in central Istria. It is known as the world’s smallest town. This medieval hilltop town has just 24 inhabitants.

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia Share Istria | Croatia Travel Blog

I’ve been back home from my recent #ShareIstria adventure for just 24 hours, and I am so excited to share with you this little discovery. By little, I don’t mean figuratively; I mean literally small – so small the locals have declared Hum ‘The Worlds Smallest Town.’ 

Although reading (and hearing) repeatedly that Hum is listed as the Guinness Book of Records holder, I can not find proof. Nor can I find any other town in the world so small. Vatican City is smaller, but it’s also a country, so you decide. Either way. I introduce to you the teeny tiny town of Hum.

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia | Share Istria | Croatia Travel Blog

Hum (pronounced hh-um) is located in central Istria, approximately 2.5 hours drive from Croatia’s capital Zagreb. When I last wrote about this medieval hilltop town, I thought it had 21 inhabitants (2011 census), but it seems that between 2011, and 2016 there has been a baby boom. There are now 27 people who call Hum home – including four little ones.

I always shout about how safe Croatia is for kids and how we love that part of our life as expats here in Croatia . But this little town must be the quietest and safest town to live with children. That is if you discount the cobblestone streets. Of which there are just two. Yes, only two streets.

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia Share Istria | Croatia Travel Blog
Worlds Smallest Town – Hum Croatia.

Surrounded by nature, Hum is beyond charming. We drove up to the town gates, and I could tell instantly that it had a unique appeal. An enormous copper door shields the entrance to the town, which has striking handles adorned with Glagolitic Script (more on that later)

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia Share Istria - Croatia Travel Blog

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia - Croatia Travel Blog

My guide suggested we close to the doors to get a better look at the boškarin (Istrian Ox) horns that protect the entrance. It was a great idea; I suggest you try it.

Located in central Istria, Hums is a tiny town built in the early Medieval age and has survived all this time. The architecture of the town is second to none and is intoxicating to anyone who visits.

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What To Do In Hum

While there isn’t a lot regarding touristic attractions in Hum town, simply due to its size, it is surrounded by some of the most beautiful scenery you will set your eyes on and has a tavern which serves traditional Istrian meals.

Admire the frescos in the Romanic chapel of St. Jerolim.

Once you have wandered the two streets – be warned it will take longer than you think as you’ll stop and take a million photos along the way; you should stop at Humska Konoba, a tavern that serves traditional Istrian meals.

We sat for some 2 hours overlooking the vineyards and olive groves, eating, drinking, and chatting. My suggestion is to plan your arrival at Hum around 10 am, wander the streets, and be seated before the crowds arrive. You’ll want to claim your table overlooking the delights below.

Worlds Smallest Town - Hum Croatia
Local Brandy – Humska Biska

Along with your meal, you must try the Humska Biska, a brandy made from an ancient recipe made with mistletoe.

Speaking of brandy, each October, the Town of Hum holds the Grappa Festival. Local brandy producers from all over Istria come to show off their concoctions to win prizes.

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia Share Istria

Another fun thing to do in Hum is to attend the yearly election of the Mayor. It’s quite likely that the world’s smallest town has the most elections of any town in the world. Each year the town elects a new mayor – but only the men can vote. It’s an old tradition, dating back hundreds of years.

Voting takes place, unlike anything I have ever heard of – each of the 11 men voting is given a wooden-like spoon. On one side is a mark for candidate number one, and on the other hand, is an identifying mark for the second candidate.

The elections are held here – doesn’t this scene remind you from a movie set? Heck, the whole place reminded me of a Hollywood film set.

Worlds Smallest Town Hum Croatia Share Istria | Travel Blog Croatia
The voting spot in Hum Croatia

Hum has a certain charm, much like other destinations in Istria.


Where is Hum located in Croatia?

Hum is located in the central part of Istria, Croatia’s largest peninsula, known for its picturesque countryside and charming medieval towns.

What makes Hum unique and special?

Hum is known as the “smallest town in the world,” with only a few houses and a population of around 20 people. It has preserved its medieval appearance and offers a serene and quaint atmosphere.

What are the top attractions to see in Hum Croatia?

While small in size, Hum offers delightful attractions such as the Church of St. Jerome, the Hum Glagolitic Wall, and the ancient city gates.

Is Hum Croatia a popular tourist destination?

Hum is a hidden gem and not as crowded as some of the more well-known tourist destinations in Croatia, making it a perfect spot for peaceful exploration.

Can I explore Hum on a day trip?

Yes, Hum can be easily explored on a day trip from nearby towns like Motovun or Buzet. Its small size allows visitors to see its main attractions within a few hours.

What are the best times to visit Hum Croatia?

The best times to visit Hum are during the spring and autumn when the weather is mild, and the surrounding landscapes are lush and green.

Are there any traditional events or festivals in Hum?

Hum hosts several traditional events and festivals, such as the Glagolitic Alphabet Day, celebrating the ancient Glagolitic script, and the Day of Hum, where locals celebrate their unique town.

Is English widely spoken in Hum Croatia?

While Croatian is the official language, English is commonly spoken in tourist areas, allowing travelers to communicate with ease.

Can I try local Istrian cuisine in Hum?

Yes, Hum offers traditional Istrian dishes, such as fuži pasta, truffles, Istrian prosciutto, and local wines, providing a delightful culinary experience.

What are the nearby attractions to visit around Hum Croatia?

Hum’s location in Istria allows visitors to explore nearby towns like Motovun, Buzet, and Pazin, known for their historical sites and scenic landscapes.

Have you ever been to Hum Croatia? What’s the smallest town you’ve ever been to?

Comments (9)

  1. I always thought that Groznjan (maybe 50 Kilometers west of Hum) was the smallest town in the world.
    Eitherway, Istrians seem to have a thing for beautiful small towns. Both of them seem to be worth a visit. As many other people I love the coast of Istria but you shouldnt miss out on the inside of it. Especially because everything is really easy to reach!

    1. Ohn no, Groznajn is much bigger!! I was there also a few times and its huge compared to Hum :D And, I agree, it’s all so easily accessible for sure!

  2. Haven’t visited…but it looks so, so pretty and your photos are really awesome SJ. Look forward to reading more about your #shareistria travels :)

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