Pula’s magnificent Roman amphitheater, known by locals as the Arena, was built between 2 b.c. and a.d. 14. One of the largest remaining buildings of its type in the world (the best known being the far bigger Coliseum in Rome), it has passed through the centuries remarkably well preserved. The outer wall remains intact, though stone seats from the interior were carried away in medieval times for use on other buildings, including the town cathedral. The Arena was designed to seat 20,000 people (highlighting the importance of Pula during the Roman period), and would have hosted gladiatorial contests. Nowadays, it stages the two-week Pula Film Festival each July, attracting international names from the world of cinema, in addition to hosting open-air summer concerts (Joss Stone and Status Quo played here in 2014).
- Frommer's Staff