Tourist Information Center:TIC Koper
Titov trg 3, 6000 Koper
+386 (0)5 664 64 03
Height above sea level
in the countryside
Smokvica is a clustered village on the lower slope of Kras - Karst (414 m) along the Grači-šče - Movraž road.
There are extensive mountain meadows on the bottom of Smokavska vala joining Gračiška vala in the south. The village lies in the midst of a dry system of valleys between Gračiška and Movraška vala below the Krog (418 m) hill. Even in ancient times, there was a freight route leading through the village from Čičarija past Rakitovec, Movraž, Gračišče and Kubed towards Koper. Since 1958, the village’s water supply has come from the Škedenca na Krogu water catchment located above the village. Slightly removed from the village centre, on the slope below Krog, is the Gorenci hamlet. Hills with names like Veliki Gradež on the Rakitovec-Movraž Plateau and Gradec pri Sv. Kviriku (Sočerga), the remains of hill forts in Lačna and the preserved ruins of the Na jamnicah hill fort above Smokvica bear witness to the early settlement of this area. Written sources mention the village (Figaruola) in 1028 in the deed of donation by the German Emperor Conrad II. the Salian to the Patriarchs of Aquileia, who enfeoffed it to the Reifenberg family in the 13th century. In the 14th century, the village became the property of the Koper Commune, then of the Vida noble family from Koper in 1488, who owned it until the 17th century. Tithe from some of the estates from this area was also given to the Gravisi family, one of the most notable noble families from Koper. This area played an important part as the frontier zone of the Koper Commune during the time of the Ottoman invasions at the end of the 15th century and the Austro-Venetian wars in the first half of the 16th century. During the Uskok War (1615 – 1617), the village was plundered and burnt down.The swifter economic development in the area is especially evident in the second half of the 19th century. The territory of Movraž, Smokvica and the neighbouring villages developed trade with hay and firewood, as the territory was not appropriate for growing vegetables due to the colder climate and the distance to Trieste. The area was a wine-growing area though and the locals also grew fruit. Until 1907, when the pastures were divided, several thousand sheep were bred and large quantities of ewe’s milk cheese were therefore being sold to Koper and Trieste. In addition to the restau-rants, lively traffic facilitated the development of other non-agricultural branches, especially blacksmithing. At the time of accelerated economic development, especially in the 1880s and 1890s, the beginnings of national awakening emerged with the development of social life and a livelier cultural pulse. The village was partially burnt down during the German October offensive in 1943, but the locals nevertheless actively joined the national liberation movement. The locals from Smokvica and Movraž partook in the smuggling of salt from the Sečovlje Salt Pans to the hinterlands for the partisan army. From 1 August 1944, there was also a partisan school operating in Smokvica. Agriculture, especially animal husbandry, was the main economic activity in the village until a few years after the Second World War. In 1945, the village still had as many as 210 residents. The locals also engaged in simple learned handicraft – the men undertook masonry and some were true masters of it, as proven by the Bržan homestead and other houses in the village. The refurbished »Pri Bržanih« homestead is undoubtedly among the most interesting sights of the village.