A Day in Zagreb

Heading east from Ljubljana, Slovenia we stayed a couple nights in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia. We didn’t really have any expectations about the city but we found it a very walkable place with a lot of interesting sights.

We stayed at an Air BnB close to the train station so we walked from there towards downtown Zagreb. While there were a number of derelict buildings in the area, there was also a long wall of graffiti that had a number of creative pieces on it.

We went from the train station towards the downtown core. It only took about 30 minutes and we passed some sights along the way.

Statue of King Tomislav, the first king of Croatia not far from the train station. The art museum is in the background
Grabbing a coffee downtown

Near the downtown core was a large market area that had everything, especially fruits and vegetables. All the fruit stands really brought out the bees in the late summertime!

In front of the market
The bakeries were delicious too

From the market we could see Zagreb Cathedral looming overhead, so we headed over to take a look.

Originally over 900 years old and restored in the 19th century, the cathedral is the tallest building in Zagreb and visible from most places in the city.

Beautiful interior
The extensive archbishop’s quarters behind the cathedral
Side of the wall written in Glagolitic script, the oldest known Slavic alphabet

We then made our way higher to the upper town where the parliament buildings are located. On the way up we went through the stone gate, one of four surrounding the oldest part of town and one of the best preserved monuments in Zagreb.

Inside was a religious painting that survived a massive fire in 1731. It was subsequently used as the centrepiece of a tiny chapel that has been in use there since that time. You literally walk under the gate, pass the chapel and you are outside again. It was quite a unique place.

A bit difficult to see the painting these days
Parishioners at the chapel

Onward we went to the main area where the Croatian government buildings including offices, courts and parliament were located. Unlike many parliaments this was quite compact and open for visitors outside, although entry was not allowed inside most of the government buildings.

St. Mark’s Square with the beautiful varnished tiled roof
Kim trying to see whether she could go in–she couldn’t

Close to the parliament buildings was another church. St. Catherine’s church is baroque in design and was built in 1632. A lookout to the right of the old church gave us one of the best spots for a view of the city.

St. Catherine’s church
There’s the cathedral again, this time from a higher vantage point

We headed down from the old town as we made our way back to the newer part of downtown.

This doggy came and photo-bombed my shot of Kim walking down from the parliament area
Kim got to enjoy the swing at the bottom of the steps

Before heading back to our place we stopped at a microbrewery downtown. It wasn’t easy finding the entrance, but once we went inside there was a huge beer garden in the back. It was a nice end to a long day of walking.

I enjoyed Chevapi, a traditional Balkan sandwich while Kim went for pasta

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