Zagreb – out of the center – Medvednica hills

Mirogoj Cemetery – Full of greenery, one of the most beautiful cemeteries (cemetery) in Europe it is located north of the center, on the slopes of Medvednica (access by bus #106 or 226 in front of the cathedral). It was designed by Herman Bolle in 1876 r. The most eminent Croatian personalities are buried here, m.in. deceased in 1999 r. President Franjo Tudjman (near the chapel). The tombs of the poet Petr Preradovic and the politician Stjepan Radic are also distinguished.

Maksimir Park – The largest park in the city – 18 ha of land full of paths, alleys and artificial lakes (Maksimirska cesta; from 9.00 until dusk; access by trams #4, 7, 11 i 12). It was founded in 1794 r. as the first public facility of this type in this part of Europe. The most characteristic building is the Bellevue pavilion. There is also a zoo (Maksimir Park, tel.01/2302199, www.zoo.hr; 9.00—18.00, introduction to 17.00, in winter. shorter; 20/10 kn).

Lake Jarun – From May to October, Jarun, called the Zagreb Adriatic Sea, is one of Zagreb's favorite weekend getaways. It stretches across the south-western outskirts of the city, over the Sava (access by trams #5 i 17). On the premises of the occupant 235 ha of the complex is a swimming pool, beaches, well-organized base of water sports, pitches for various team games and professional regatta courses.

Medvednica hills

The northern districts of Zagreb climb the slopes of the Medvednica massif, whose highest peak is Slijeme (1030 m n.p.m.) with a TV tower at the top. Medvednica stretches from the mouth of the Krapina River to the Sava (there is a highway here) in the north-east direction, up to the town of Sv. Ivan Zelina near the highway to Varazdin. Almost the entire massif is under protection, forming v 1981 r. Medvednica Nature Park. Until 64% its surface is covered with forests, and the remaining areas are fruit orchards, vineyards, fields and villages on its outskirts.
For the inhabitants of the capital, forested mountains are a great place to rest. Entry is popular (or taking the cable car) to the top of Slijeme, trips to the Vetemica Cave or Medvedgrad Castle.

A trip to Slijeme

The highest peak of Medvednica, towering over Zagreb, can be reached on foot or by cable car Sljemen-ska żićara (tooth. Public transport, s. 107). The lower station is located in Gračani on the outskirts of Zagreb. You can reach it from the center by trams #8 or 14 (to the final stops). Then change to the bus #15 going to Gaćania.
The hiking trail to the summit begins at the lower station of the cable car, the hike takes approx. 4 hours. In winter, there is a ski center here. There are several shelters waiting for tourists in the peak parts. In good weather, you can admire a vast panorama from the top – not only Zagreb and Hrvatsko Zagorje, but even the Slovenian Alps.

Excursion to Medvedgrad Castle

The castle perched on a hill between the town and the main Medvednica range (8.00-20.00) it is one of the most impressive gothic fortresses in the country. It was built in the years 1249-1254, to protect the city from the Tatars. Later it was subjected to multiple modifications, and finally abandoned in 1590 r. after the earthquake. Partial reconstruction began in 1979 r.; now you can see massive defensive walls and a small chapel with frescoes. A restaurant has opened in one of the dungeons. W 1995 r. a monument commemorating the victims of the last Balkan war was erected on the hill. It offers a vast panorama of the capital and the main Medvednica range with the Slijeme peak.
To get to the castle, it is best to take a bus #102 from the center (British Square) to the church in Śestine on the outskirts of Zagreb, where the path to the ruins begins.

A trip to the Veternica cave

Veternica Cave, one of the largest Croatian caves (tel.01/4586317; half. IV-X sb. i nd. 10.00-16.00, pn.-pt. upon prior reservation; Guided tours; 25/12 kn) is located on the western slopes of Medvednica, over the sediment of Gajnica (access by trams #2, 6 or 11 to the final stop of Crnomerec, where from by bus #124).
The spacious entrance to Veternica is situated at a height 320 m n.p.m. The length of the sleepers is estimated to be slightly more than 7 km (fourth longest in Croatia), and the main corridor has 2,6 km. However, only the initial ones are visited, high and spacious parts of the cave with electric lighting.
The oldest archaeological and palaeontological finds in the Zagreb area have been made in Veternica. Bones of a cave bear were discovered there, and traces of Neanderthal encampments. For this reason, the cave is sometimes called the Zagrepcan house (the first house of a Zagreb resident).

Croatian Zagorje

Tourists rarely visit the land of green hills between Zagreb and the Slovenian border, meanwhile, it has several attractions to offer. The capital of the region, Krapina, maybe not worth attention, but in the nearby settlement of Huśnjakovo, the Museum of Evolution was organized (Šetaliśte V. Servants, tel.049/371491; IV-X pn.-nd. 8.00-17.00, XI—III pn.-nd. 8.00-15.00) with finds from prehistoric times. Health resorts are located south of Krapina: Krapinske Toplice, Tuheljskie Toplice, Śemnićke Toplice or Stubićke Toplice. Przybyszom offer, among others. mineral pools (outdoor and covered; 15-50 kn).

In the western part of the region, Kumrovec, a town known to almost every Croat, is located on the Slovenian border, where Josip Broz-Tito was born. The village was transformed into an open-air museum of 19th-century folk architecture, with approx. 40 historic houses and displays of traditional craftsmanship (Old Village Museum; tel.049/553107, mss@kr.htnet.hr; IV-X pn.-nd. 9.00-18.00, XI—III pn.-nd. 9.00-16.00; 20/10 kn).

Hrvatsko Zagorje is also famous for its castles. Not far north of Kumrovac, the impressive 16th-century castle of Veliki Tabor rises above the village of Desinić (tel.049/343052, dvt@kr.htnet.hr; IV-X pn.-nd. 10.00-18.00, XI—III pn.-nd. 9.00-17.00) with thick walls and massive towers. A very picturesque Trakoschan castle (tel.042/796281, dvor-trakoscan@vz.tel.hr; IV-X pn.-nd. 9.00-18.00, XI—III pn.-nd. 9.00-16.00; 20/15 kn) it stands on a hill above a lake in the northern part of the region. It was established in the 14th century., but it owes its present-day gothic appearance to the reconstruction in the years 1856-1860. For the last several hundred years it was in the hands of the Draśkovice family and it is so today (after a break in the 20th century). Inside is original furniture, art Gallery, weapons collection etc..

On the northern slopes of the Medvednica massif, in the country's most important pilgrimage center – Marija Bistrica – is a national Marian shrine with a wooden Gothic statue of the Virgin Mary famous for its miracles. Annually, over half a million pilgrims pray before her. W 1998 r. Pope John Paul II visited this place.

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