Valli Cinema Pula

Valli Cinema Pula Article

Top Highlights

  • A century-long cinematic legacy in the heart of Pula.
  • Unique screening selection from world hits to indie films.
  • Proud member of esteemed international film networks.
  • Specialized programs nurturing young film enthusiasts.
  • Situated on the historic Giardini promenade amidst ancient stone walls.
  • Film aficionados seeking diverse cinematic experiences.
  • History buffs curious about Pula’s rich film heritage.
  • Families looking for kid-friendly film programs.
  • Travelers keen on witnessing a blend of culture and entertainment.

About the Valli Cinema

Nestled in the heart of Pula, along the famed Giardini promenade, stands Kino Valli — a symbol of the city’s rich cinematic heritage and a beacon for film enthusiasts from all corners of the world. Its ancient stone walls, remnants of times long past, whisper stories of eras gone by, while its vibrant screenings continue to enchant audiences of today. This is a deep dive into the story of Kino Valli, Pula’s historic cinematic treasure.

Origins and Early Days

Kino Valli is not just any cinema; it’s Pula’s first real cinema and the only one that has been preserved in its original glory. The cinema’s location boasts ancient stone walls that echo back to the days of Antiquity, giving it an allure unlike any other. These walls have witnessed history unfold, from the rise and fall of empires to the changing landscapes of art and culture.

The city of Pula itself was introduced to the magic of cinema in 1896 when a traveling cinematographer showcased his films at Politeama Ciscutti, which is now known as the Istrian National Theatre. By 1906, when Pula became the main base of the Austrian war fleet, it established its first permanent cinema. Kino Valli, with its rich legacy, is a living testament to this longstanding romance between Pula and films.

Transformation through Political Tides

Over the century, Kino Valli, like the city of Pula itself, has witnessed several political and cultural shifts. Originally known as L’Alhambra during the Austrian era, the cinema underwent significant expansion in 1919. This was to cater to the increasing number of spectators who not only came for films but also for sports meetings, notably boxing.

The winds of change brought by the Italian era were reflected in Kino Valli’s façade, which took on the “fascia” symbol resonating with fascist ideology. With this change, it donned a new name, ‘Sala Umberto’. Later, as it transitioned into the Central House of Culture, it became known as Cinema Zagreb, a name it bore for many years.

A Hub for Film Enthusiasts

Kino Valli is not just a place to watch films; it’s an experience. Unlike many modern multiplexes that focus on commercial titles, Kino Valli celebrates the art of cinema in its entirety. From world film hits to European and independent productions, it offers a platter rich in diversity. As a member of renowned international film organizations like Europa Cinemas and CICAE, it holds its place proudly on the global cinematic map.

Furthermore, the cinema has always emphasized the importance of introducing classics and retrospectives, turning it into a haven for film aficionados. This dedication is evident in its extensive programs focused on film education and its proud membership in the European Association of Children’s Films.

Cinema for All

Kino Valli’s commitment to catering to audiences of all ages is commendable. Their diverse programs, including the Pula Film Festival matinees for children and educational workshops like “Professor Baltazar’s Adventure Laboratory”, demonstrate their dedication. The FUŠ – Film at School initiative, which curates films for children throughout the year, is a testament to their dedication to nurturing the next generation of cinephiles.


Kino Valli is not merely a cinema; it’s an institution. Its stone walls stand as silent witnesses to the ever-evolving history of Pula, while its screens light up with stories from around the world. For residents and tourists alike, a visit to Kino Valli is not just about watching a film; it’s about being part of a legacy that spans over a century. In a world where multiplexes dominate, Kino Valli stands tall, reminding us of the timeless magic of cinema.

Historical facts

  • Ancient Origins: Kino Valli’s location on the popular Giardini promenade in Pula has ancient roots, as it’s integrated into former stone walls that date back to antiquity.

  • A Pioneering Cinema: Pula’s cinematic history runs deep. As early as 1896, people in Pula had the chance to watch films when a traveling cinematographer was hosted at Politeama Ciscutti.

  • Military Cinema: By 1906, the main base of the Austrian war fleet in Pula had its own permanent cinema. This highlights the significant role cinema played in even military environments.

  • A Yugoslavian Film Mecca: During the Yugoslavian era, Pula became a central hub for film, with the first film festival in this region being organized in 1954 in the Arena.

  • Film Footage Pioneer: Interestingly, the first film footage on Croatian soil was shot in Pula. Lumière’s cameraman A. Promi filmed the maneuvers of the Austro-Hungarian navy in 1898.

  • Changing Names and Roles: Over its long history, the area of Kino Valli saw several transformations. It once went by the name L’Alhambra during the Austrian era. By 1919, the hall was expanded to cater to an increasing number of film enthusiasts and sports meetings. It underwent another transformation during the Italian era, adopting the “fascia” symbol on its facade in line with the fascist ideology, and was renamed Sala Umberto. Later, it housed the Central House of Culture, and eventually got its more permanent name – Cinema Zagreb.

  • A Meeting Spot: Given its strategic location on what was known as the Korzo (city promenade), Kino Valli was a popular spot for the youth of Pula, making it not just a place for movies but also a significant social hub.

When to Visit

The best times to visit the Pula Cinema are during the evenings, especially if you’re looking to catch a late-night movie. Weekends are usually packed, so weekdays might offer a cozier experience.

What is There to See

Apart from movies, the cinema’s architecture is a treat. Its intricate facade and interiors narrate tales of the past. Special screenings, retrospectives, and film festivals are common events that offer a unique cinematic experience.

How Long Does a Visit Take

A typical movie lasts about 2 hours. However, set aside an additional hour if you wish to explore the premises, enjoy some local snacks, or attend post-screening events.

Local Tips & Tricks

  • Opt for evening shows to avoid the crowd.
  • Check out their weekly schedule for special screenings.
  • Grab a local treat from nearby stalls before your movie.
  • Solo travelers eager to immerse in Pula’s cinematic culture.
  • Couples looking for a cozy movie date.
  • Groups interested in film retrospectives and festivals.

Contact Info

How to Get Here

  • How to Get There: Valli Cinema Pula is located in Center of pula, to be precise on Giardini promenade. Cant miss it.

Where to park

  • For parking recommendations, please refer to our where-to-park section, which provides details on all available parking spots.


Can I book tickets for Pula Valli Cinema online?
Yes, most screenings allow online bookings. It’s advisable to check their official website for the most up-to-date information.
Are there any special discounts for students or seniors?
Yes, Pula Cinema usually offers discounts for students and senior citizens. It’s best to check with the cinema directly.
What kind of films does the cinema typically screen?
The cinema offers a mix of mainstream, indie, European, and classic films, catering to a wide range of audiences.
Is it kid-friendly?
Absolutely! With programs like Professor Baltazar’s Adventure Laboratory and the FUŠ – Film at School, it’s a hit among young film enthusiasts.
Are there guided tours available to know more about the cinema’s history?
While there aren’t regular guided tours, the cinema occasionally hosts special events and tours, especially during festivals.
Do they have English subtitles for non-English movies?
Most non-English films screened here come with English subtitles. However, it’s always good to confirm beforehand.
Is there a cafe or eatery inside the cinema?
While the cinema itself doesn’t house a cafe, there are numerous eateries and snack stalls nearby for a quick bite.