A city of grand Austro-Hungarian architecture and home to a multitude of museums and the majority of the country’s residents, inland Zagreb is Croatia‘s cultural hub. Legions of visitors have flocked to the city in recent years and yet Zagreb has managed to retain its old world charm, extending a warm and inviting welcome to all of its guests.
The city can be roughly divided up into three historical parts. First up, is the thousand-year old “Gornji Grad” or “Upper Town” which contains the Presidential Palace, St Mark’s Church with its iconic roof, the “Sabor” or Croatian parliament, and a plethora of museums and galleries set on cobbled medieval streets lit by gas lamps. Next comes the 19th century “Donji Grad” or “Lower Town” which is full of shops, restaurants, cafes, theatres, and parks. Characterised by high-rise towers and mainly residential in nature, the newest part of the city is nearly entirely post World War II and is aptly named “Novi Zagreb” or “New Zagreb”.
Enjoy your time in this lively little capital strolling the cobbled streets, watching the world go by in busy cafes and darting between collections in the many museums and galleries. You’ll also find that it’s a year-round outdoor city thanks to the presence of Jarun Lake in the southwest where people venture to swim and sail; Mount Medvednica where Zagrebians hit the ski slopes; and the hiking destination of Samobor. The otherworldly green and blue lakes of the Plitvice National Park are also easily accessible on day trips.
When to go
Zagreb is a year round destination, with warm summers and mild winters. Rain and fog are common in autumn between October to December. Snowfall is common in the winter months, from December to March.
What to do
- Take a tour around Gornji Grad and Kaptol to see Zagreb's medieval churches, palaces, museums, galleries, and government buildings
- Enjoy 360 degree views of the city from the 13th century Lotrscak Tower
- Take in a performance at the Croatian National Theater
- Stroll around Mirogoj, one of the most beautiful cemeteries in Europe
- Try a traditional hearty Croatian "rucak" lunch
- Learn about Zagreb's rich Roman history
- Spend some time at Jarun Lake and its shingle beaches
- Ski on Medvednica Mountain
- Hike at Samobor
- Take a day trip to the Plitvice National Park
Itineraries including Zagreb
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