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ZAGREB MUNICIPAL MUSEUM (MUZEJ GRADA ZAGREBA)
On my first day in Zagreb we went to the city museum so that I could dive into its history straight away. We were late so we had the whole place to ourselves which was really nice. You will find interesting bits and details about Zagreb from prehistoric times to today here.
My favourite in here were the angel statues, the advertising posters of the 20th century, the room where models are placed on a city map telling you about the horseshoe of parks.
The museum - which is placed in beautiful old convent building - is a great place to get a feel for the city. I can only recommend spending an hour here before exploring the city.
The museum is open Tuesday-Friday, 10am - 6pm and on weekends from 10 am to 1 pm. Closed on mondays.
- Museum Visits
- Historical Travel
STROSSMAYER PROMENADE (STROSSMAYEROVO SETALISTE)
I think taking the Strossmayer Promenade is the nicest way down to the lower town. There are the most beautiful lamps here as well some nice views and benches under old trees here. One of them is always occupied though as you can see on the next tip.
The best view of the city
Formerly it was possible to climb the cathedral towers (I've never been up myself), but now the best view you can get is the one from the Upper Town (Gornji Grad). If you walk down Ilica street (it's going west from the main square (trg bana Josipa Jelacica), take the stairs or the Uspinjaca (opened in 1890 - one of the oldest funiculars in Europe!) to the Upper Town. You can take a nice promenade up there & if you want a total 360° view of the city, climb the tower of Kula Lotrscak. I think the admission costs a couple of kunas, but it's worth it. :)
THE NICEST VIEW
At the end of Strossmayer Promenade before you get to the stairs down to the lower town there's a little terrace. From here you can take some nice pics of the typical lamps with the spires of Zagreb's churches in the background. It's also a nice spot at night here.
The Upper Town (Gornji Grad)
I can't say anything about this part of the city! The whole thing is just great! St. Mark's church with the famous colored roof, St. Catherine's church, the Cathedral - everything is just beautiful. I use to go there to rest my soul sometimes... Just let the city take over you. Stroll down & up the streets, get lost, whatever! Just let yourself feel the touch, please.
BAN'S COURT PALACE (BANSKI DVORI)
This place used to be the Ban's (Croatian vice-king) palace. It is the only building in Zagreb that was hit by rockets during the war in the 1990s. Back then it was the seat of Croatia's president Franjo Tuðman and the Yugoslav army tried to kill him. They didn't. You can see destroyed furniture from this bulding in the city museum.
LOTRSCAK TOWER (KULA LOTRSCAK)
Walk through Cirilometodska and you will get to the upper funicular stop and Lotrscak tower next to it. The tower which fires a cannon every day at noon (see Warning or Dangers) was built in the 13th century as a watchtower.
OLD PHARMARCY (ALIGHIERI LJEKARNA)
OK let's leave the quiet place --- and go towards the quietest area of Zagreb - the upper town. Walk uphill and on your left side you will see the old pharmacy which has been there since the 14th century. It was founded in 1350, from 1399 it belonged to Nicolo Alighieri, great-grandson of Dante Alighieri.
Nowadays it got some competition though, there are pharmacies basically at every corner in Zagreb. At least it seemed like it, that green cross was everywhere I looked (a bit like the magenta ads ;)
STONE GATE (KAMENITA VRATA)
Stone Gate was one of my favourite must sees in Zagreb, it has this certain atmosphere that I like. The gate is the last remaining entrance to the city.
All wooden elements in the gate were destroyed by a fire in 1731 apart from one painting of holy Mary and baby Jesus. The people worship this picture even today because they believe this was a miracle. It was nice to see people stopping here for a short prayer or to light a candle. There are lots of plaques at the wall of people saying thank you. A quiet place in the middle of the city. Beautiful!
From the tower you can take the funicular down (though I recommend taking it uphill and walking down if you - like me - are dying to take it) or then take the nicest walk down (see next tip).
The short funicular was built in 1891 and it connects the upper town with Ilica, Zagreb's longest street full of shops and cafes.
Kamenita vrata - A Passage Through Time
These gates used to be one of entrances through city walls. The fire of 1731 caused a lot of destruction, and people reported seeing the vision of Virgin Mary in the ashes that were found in these gates. After basic reconstruction, these gates were left untouched since the end of 18th century, and have ever since been place of peaceful thoughts, remembering and prayers.
- Religious Travel
- Arts and Culture
- Family Travel
ST. MARK'S CHURCH (SV. MARKO)
St. Mark's church used to be the parish church for Gradec. It was built some time in the 13th century. It's main attraction is the roof (see next tip), its portal (which was under scaffolding when I was there) and for me the beautiful christmas tree with Licitar hearts in front of it ;)
UPPER TOWN (GORNJI GRAD)
What I really liked was to just stroll around the little streets of the upper town. I have no idea where I was and what I took pictures of here but I don't care. It's so peaceful up there and there are some beautiful yellow buildings and nice corners. I think you should do the same if you have a little time to spend. Don't worry, we will continue with our little walk soon and the next stops will bring us back down to the lower town.
SABOR - THE PARLIAMENT
At the corner of Camenita and Markov Trg (St. Mark's square) there's the parliament of the Republic of Croatia called Sabor. It looks quite big for the upper town but it also looks quite small considering it's the parliament for a whole country!
MATIJA GUBEC'S HEAD
At the building at the corner of Markov Trg and Cirilometodska there's a head carved in stone at the edge. According to legend the guy looking at St. Mark's church is Matija Gubec, the leader of the peasant uprising against their feudal lords in 1573. Also according to legend he was executed right at Markov Trg.
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