10 Must See Sights of Zagreb, The Ultimate Guide to Croatia’s Capital City

Day-6 of our 10 country 10 night road trip from North Germany to Italy saw us leave Bratislava, Slovenia to travel via Lake Heviz, Hungary, then on to Zagreb Croatia. As a result we knew we would be short on time when we got to Zagreb. Consequently we chose 10 must see sights of Zagreb.

When we arrived at the border to Hungary we paid our road tolls and continued along the quiet straight road surrounded by a flat terrain.  Seeing so many dried-up fields of sunflowers made the area look barren.

Once again we had an unplanned stop at a roadside market. We couldn’t resist buying the largest water-melons we have ever seen. This area grows local produce where the fruit and vegetables are so flavoursome.

10 Must See Sights of Zagreb, The Ultimate Guide to Croatia's Capital City
Watermelon road side stall, Hungary

Lake Heviz, Hungary

What we found was a typical little resort town. What we discovered was the second largest thermal lake in the world (Lake Echo in New Zealand is the largest)As a result we were a little overwhelmed with the amount of bathers, bobbing about with their floatation devices. Of course we hadn’t thought of that.

While the water is naturally replenished every 72 hours, the green algae giving therapeutic relief to swimmers can be a little off putting.  With the air temperature at 35 degrees the lake was refreshing at a lower temperature.

10 Must See Sights of Zagreb
Lake Heviz, Hungary – Photo courtesy of Google
10 Must See Sights of Zagreb
Trying to Stay Afloat while taking a selfie, Lake Heviz, Hungary

10 Must See Sights of Zagreb

Where to Stay:

Nome was our choice. It’s a little hotel within walking distance of the old town city with great coffee. The room had a kitchenette too for only Euro 50 a night. We used the free app hotels.com for our booking so it won’t be long until we have our tenth night free.

 

What to See – Upper Town and Lower Town

When you visit Zagreb you will often hear the locals refer to these two areas of the city.  The reason for the two distinctions, the Upper Town is situated on the two hills Kaptol and Gradec at the foothills of Medvednica Mountain.

 

The Green Horseshoe – Lower Town

The Green horseshoe or Lenuci’s horseshoe, consists of seven squares forming the shape of a horseshow. It’s easier to see on a map. The square’s form a green space of around 12,500 sqm providing a resting and meeting point. Some of the highlights you’ll find are:

1. King Tomislav Square

In this wonderful relaxing area where you can sit and read, or take a nap on the grass, you’ll find the Art Pavilion. This impressive building is the oldest gallery in Southeast Europe opened in 1898.

Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Art Pavilion, Zagreb

2. Nicola Subic Zrinski Square

Here in this square you will find another wonderful piece of architecture, the Gallery of Old Masters. In 1884, Bishop Josip Juraj Strossmayer donated his collection of over 4,000 items, and some of it is displayed in this building.

Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Gallery of Old Masters, Zagreb

3. The Zrinjevac Park

This wonderful area and once again it is a place to sit and relax. Today the city was enjoying a local promotion.

Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Zrinjevac Park, Zagreb

4. Croatian National Theatre

A love of theatre, opera and ballet was the reason for this purpose- built building back in 1836.

Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Croatian National Theatre, Zagreb

To capture these amazing photos for your own memory record, we choose to use the Sony DSC-HX90V – for exceptional photos from a camera which easily fits in your pocket. Great for selfies too.

Disclosure: There are affiliate links so if you click through we benefit toO, helpING our blog too.

 

As you make your way into the city centre, stop for a panoramic view.

 

5. Zagreb 360 degree – Obervation Deck and Café (Lower Town)

On Ban Jelacic Square you can gain access to the observation deck 365 days of the year. It is open from 10am to midnight but we suggest seeing it earlier in the day. That’s if you want the sun behind you to take photos of the Cathedral and Upper Town.

 

Zagreb, Croatia's Capital City is often underrated as a city to visit. What you will find is one of the best preserved old towns of Croatia. Click To Tweet

 

Gornji Grad – Upper Town

The upper town is one of the best preserved medieval places to visit in Croatia, it is built on the hills of Kapto and Gradec.  It’s here you can walk along cobblestoned streets viewing majestic buildings of old.

6. Zagreb Cathedral

This monumental cathedral dates to 1287 and is the tallest building in Croatia as its spires reach 108m. The spires were built after the 1880 earthquake when the nave and original tower collapsed.

Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Zagreb Cathedral
Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Zagreb Cathedral
Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Old Fortification Wall near Zagreb Cathedral

 

7.  Old Town Gate

In 1731 a fire destroyed the wooden gate of the town except for a painting of Virgin Mary. There is a small altar here and it is said if you light a candle placed under the altar, you will receive good luck. Please remember to remain silent as you pass through.

Zagreb Croatia - Ultimate Guide - 10 Must See Sights
Old Town Gate – Shrine to Virgin Mary, Zagreb

 

8.  St Mark’s Church

This beautiful church with i’s colourful roof is in the middle of two important buildings. The Croatian Government and Parliament buildings are situated in St Mark’s Square. Our visit in the evening showcased the beauty of the church.

10 Must See Sights of Zagreb
St Mark’s Church, Zagreb

The Coat of Arms on the left side of the roof represent Croatian, Dalmatian and Slavonia with the emblem of Zagreb on the right.

9.  Strossmartre

Now here is a place to visit. During the day, you will find crafts and works of love by local artists available to buy. In the afternoon when the bars have opened the area is buzzy and you will enjoy the live music in the evening. Morning, afternoon or evening, you will have views out across the city.

But if you don’t feel like a walk back down to the lower town, then purchase a ticket for a short trip on the funicular.

10 Must See Sights of Zagreb
Or take the Love Bus – Strossmayerovo Boulevard

Now, if you want to stay a little longer, why not take a seat at Pod Grickim Topom Restaurant. You never know, there may even be a movie showing while you relax with a drink.

 

10.   Tkalciceva

This would be one of  the liveliest pedestrian café, bar and restaurant street in Zagreb. You can reach the street via Dolac, a fresh produce market opened between 6am-2pm each day.

Once again we found ourselves sitting at a local craft beer brewery Pivnica Mali Medo in Tkalciceva. Although we opted to share a pizza, we did enjoy a medley of beers to enjoy. This place is easy to find as the numbering along the street is very large. Just look for number 36.

10 Must See Sights of Zagreb
Tkalciceva, Zagreb – for bars and restaurants

An extra highlight to Consider

Our visit to Zagreb wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t mention the most unusual museum we have seen -the Museum of Broken Relationships. This museum showcases stories and items left behind after a relationship break-up. We had a quick peek in the foyer and read a couple of stories about items sent to the museum.

Just click on the website here Museum of Broken Relationships as the stories are fascinating – anything from a stiletto shoe, an axe and even a duvet cover.

Grab Your Free Walking Map

As promised we have included a map for your next visit. you’ll find this map helpful to navigate your way around the 10 Must See Sights of Zagreb.  Zagreb is an under rated city well worth a visit.

Download Your Free Zagreb Walking Path

Here’s a pin for later when planning your own European trip.

 

Zagreb, Croatia's Capital City is often underrated as a city to visit. What you will find is one of the best preserved old towns of Croatia.

2 comments

    • TravelKiwis says:

      Hi Joe – they say it is an underrated city, and exploring it even for a short time, was a great history lesson. It was so funny to come across the Museum of Broken Relationships and what stuff people send to it. A unique way to de-stress.

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