Attractions In Zagreb: The 10 Best

Zagreb, Croatia
Zagreb

Zagreb is like all of Croatia in miniature. This metropolis has everything you might want for a great urban vacation. There are excellent museums, galleries, and theaters, as well as numerous medieval churches, monasteries, beautiful parks, mountains, and nature preserves in the city.

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Croatia's capital is located in the country's northwest, on the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain, along the Sava River. The Upper Town (Gornji grad), the 19th-century Lower Town (Donji grad), and the post-World War II area of New Zagreb are three main parts of the city.



After Ljubljana, Zagreb was the second city I visited in Southern Europe and the Balkans. If I didn't feel the southern vibe in the Slovenian capital, it's evident in Zagreb's architecture, flora, air, and people's mentality. My fascination with Southern Europe began in the Croatian capital, as I had previously been an enthusiastic traveler in Scandinavia and Scotland. Here is my list of ten Zagreb attractions I found the most exciting. Perhaps you might want to put some or all of them on your bucket list for your visit to Croatia's capital.


Top 10 Zagreb Attractions


1. St. Mark's Church


St. Mark's Church in Zagreb

The magnificent Church of St. Mark, located close to the Croatian Parliament building in the Upper Town, is Zagreb's oldest parish church and one of the city's most recognizable landmarks. First mentioned in 1256, it received its main external contours in the 14th–15th centuries before being restored in the 19th century, giving the building its current interior appearance. Two massive coats of arms with colored tiles adorn the steep slope of the roof: the historical coat of arms of the Triune Kingdom of Croatia, Slavonia, and Dalmatia, and the coat of arms of Zagreb (white castle on a red background).

Address: Trg Sv. Marka 5, 10000 Zagreb
Official website: Archdiocese of Zagreb


2. Zagreb Cathedral


Zagreb Cathedral

The Neo-Gothic Zagreb Cathedral is the largest Croatian sacral building and one of the most valuable monuments of the country's cultural heritage. From any spot in the city center, you can see this icon of Croatia. The image of the Zagreb Cathedral adorns the 1000 Croatian kuna banknote. Over its centuries-long history, the building has been destroyed, rebuilt, and altered countless times. Unfortunately, in the spring of 2020, an earthquake measuring 5.5 on the Richter scale destroyed the top of the cathedral's south bell tower.

Address: Kaptol 31, 10000 Zagreb
Official website: Glas Koncila


3. Ivana Tkalčića Street


Tkalciceva Street

Ivana Tkalčića Street, dotted with pubs, cafes, restaurants, stores, and tiny parks, is Zagreb's most vibrant street. This cobblestone pedestrian lane is just a few steps from the main city square, Trg Bana Josipa Jelačića.


4. Ban Josip Jelačić Square


Ban Josip Jelačić Square

Located in the Lower Town, Ban Josip Jelačić Square is the Croatian capital's main pedestrian zone and central square. In the area founded in the 17th century, you will find buildings dating from the 19th and 20th centuries in different architectural styles, such as baroque, classical, and modern. In the square, there is also an equestrian monument (erected in 1866) to Croatian politician and commander Count Josip Jelačić von Bužim, the country's largest Zagreb bank, the city's first high-rise business building Neboder (built-in 1959), 19th-century Mandusevac fountain, and numerous cafes, restaurants, and shops.


5. Ilica Street


Ilica Street

Ilica – Zagreb's main street and one of the city's oldest and longest streets – stretches 5.6 kilometers (3.5 miles). Numerous cultural institutions, banks, offices of various companies, expensive stores, cafes, and restaurants concentrate on Ilica. It is also the most expensive street in Croatia's capital for living and renting an apartment.


6. Dolac Market


Dolac Market

Opened in 1930, Dolac is the largest and most famous market in Zagreb. Located near Ban Josip Jelačić Square and the Zagreb Cathedral, it has two sections: an outdoor area for fruits and vegetables and an indoor area for fish, meats, and dairy products. According to tradition, parasols at this market have the same colors and designs as the 18th-century Šestine umbrella, a well-known souvenir of Croatia's capital and part of the traditional costume worn in Zagreb's Šestine region.


Kumica Barica

A traditional saleswoman sculpture created by Croatian sculptor Stjepan Graan in 2006 stands at the top of the stairs leading to Dolac. It illustrates the significance of Kumica Barica, a village woman who works for the market.

Address: Dolac 8, 10000 Zagreb


7. Centar Kaptol


Centar Kaptol

Centar Kaptol – one of the first shopping malls in the city – has 85 shops, Zagreb's first Japanese restaurant, five cinema auditoriums, various bars, and cafes. It is only a short distance from Ban Josip Jelačić Square.

Address: Nova Ves 17, 10000 Zagreb
Official website: Centar Kaptol


8. Art Pavilion


Zagreb Art Pavilion

The Art Pavilion, located in the Lower Town, north of the Zagreb Train Station, is Southeast Europe's oldest art gallery and the only one in Zagreb that hosts large-scale art exhibitions. It has a total display area of 600 square meters (6458 square feet) and specializes in temporary individual and group exhibitions. Construction began at the very end of the 19th century. A show of local artists called the Croatian Salon inaugurated the new art gallery in 1898.



Address: Trg Kralja Tomislava 22, 10000, Zagreb
Official website: Art Pavilion in Zagreb


9. Park Zrinjevac


Park Zrinjevac

With its tree-lined walks, flowers, water fountains, and gorgeous statues, Park Zrinjevic is the most romantic location in an otherwise big and bustling city to take a walk and converse with your better half or to sit down and relax. You can enjoy various annual activities such as open-air concerts, cuisine festivals, and the Christmas market. The park lies between the Art Pavilion and Ban Josip Jelačić Square in the Lower Town.


10. Croatian National Theatre


Croatian National Theatre

The Croatian National Theatre, which opened in 1860, is Croatia's oldest and most significant theatre institution. It is a well-known performing arts center, particularly for musicals. It also hosts opera, ballet, and drama performances. The imposing Neo-Baroque building of the Croatian National Theater is a masterpiece by Ferdinand Fellner, an Austrian architect, and Hermann Helmer, a German architect. Ban Josip Jelačić Square is only a few minutes away on foot.

Address: Trg Republike Hrvatske 15, 10000 Zagreb
Official website: HNK



Where to Stay in Zagreb

Unsure of where to stay in Zagreb? For my trips, I use Booking.com, a well-designed website that helps me find everything from small B&Bs to large hotel chains, vacation rentals, and homestays.




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Have any questions about things to do in Zagreb? What about other suggestions? Feel free to leave a comment below.




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