This village above the Dragonja River has always overlooked its course. In the past, it was one of the main trade routes, whereas today it is the border between Croatia and Slovenia. According to archaeologists, living was organized already in prehistory, whereas the Roman origin of the toponym Castrum Bonae testifies to the life in Antiquity. Its strategic importance is doubtless because the position is perfect for overlooking the trade route in the Dragonja Valley. It is not surprising therefore, that it was already then fortified, as the first part of the name suggests. The second part is explained by presuming the temple dedicated to Bona Dea, Roman goddess of fertility, existed here, although it was not found.

The deed of gift from 1186 confirms that in 1028, the Holy Roman Emperor Conrad II granted Costa Bonae to the Patriarch of Aquileia. The patriarchs enjoyed it for nearly 200 years, and afterwards granted it to the Verzi noblemen from Koper.
The oldest preserved churches were built in the 15th c. The Parish Church of SS. Cosmas and Damian from 1446, with a rectangular ground plan and a deep polygonal painted sanctuary with a stellar vault, assumed Baroque traits in the 18th c. St. Andrew’s Church is a cemeterial church, of similar elements as the parish church. In the center of town, a chapel dedicated to the Blessed Elias deacon was built in 1742.  It has an impressively sculpted main portal.

In the 18th c., Koštabona was referred to in written sources as a settlement with some 30 hearths. However, already in the following century, the village flourished with the sale of wood to the Austrians who needed it for ship building. The shape of the town even nowadays indicates the existence of the one-time defensive walls.


Koštabona is known as the starting point of the tourist route called the Trail of Springs (Pot vodnih virov) giving you a chance to discover its surroundings in a different way.

Interesting facts:

According to the local tradition, the church dedicated to the Blessed Elias was built on the site of his home from the 1st c. It is also believed that the church was dedicated to saints – pharmacists Cosmas and Damian, which stood at the site of a pagan, pre-Christian temple dedicated to the goddess of health – Bona Dea.

Print page Send to a friend