A Day in Zagreb, Croatia
Croatia has beautiful coastlines and national parks. But the capitol of the country is also worth a visit! Last year some friends and I stayed there for a day and a half at the beginning of our road trip through Croatia. This was the perfect start of our journey and a full day there was enough to explore the highlights of the city. In this post I'd love to share what we've seen and done to help you start planning your own trip!
Start the day
At Otto & Frank for a real Zagreb breakfast.
The breakfast consists of cottage cheese, sour cream, radish, ham, fried poached eggs, horseradish, red chicory and spring onions. If you're a vegetarian, don't worry! There's also an option to get it without the meat.
After this breakfast you will have more than enough
energy to start your day of exploration. The restaurant is close to the Zagreb Cathedral, right in the middle of the old city centre.
You can stroll over the Dolac market, a daily market that's open from 07:00 - 14:00 during weekdays and from 06:00 - 13:00 on saturdays. The colorfull market offers mainly fruits and vegetables but also flowers, plants and small souvenirs.
You can hunt down some nice healthy juice and continue your walk towards the Zagreb Cathedral. But a quick disclaimer: if you'd like to visit the inside of the cathedral, don't forget to dress appropriately! Make sure your shoulders and knees are covered.
Instagram worthy spots
From the cathedral you can easily hop onto a bus towards the Mirogoj cemetery. A cemetery you ask? Yup. This cemetery has beautiful buildings covered with ivy. It's a very peaceful place where you can walk around and take a couple of photos. It's only a 13 minute bus ride from the cathedral and a bus ticket will cost you less than 1 euro.
Another photogenic piece of architecture inside the city is St Mark's Church. It may be smaller than Zagrebs Cathedral but it's definitely as, if not more, beautiful.
If you're looking for a great look out point over the city make your way to Lotrščak Tower. It's close to St Mark's Church and gives you great views over the city. Inside the building you can find old photos of the city and from the top you have a beautiful view over both the church and cathedral.
Underneath the tower you will find another small market with creative prints and other small pieces of art. And, very important, the Funicular Railway! It's the smallest funicular in Europe (or the world even? google was giving me doubts) with only being 66 meters high! For 5 kuna (around 0,70 eurocents) you can make your way up or down. And that concluded our exploration of the city that day.
What else is there to do?
Get a delicious cocktail at the Swanky Mint Hostel. This is where we stayed for a few nights but the hostel is famous for it's bar. Even the locals love the signature cocktails.
Shopping! In the lower part of the city you will find many big clothing brands. But most importantly, lots of swimwear options. So make sure to get them here if you're going coastwards later on.
Maksimir Park; if you're looking for some peace and quiet. Here is another watchtower for a different view over the city and you'll find the Zagreb Zoo right in the middle of the park.
Visit the Grič Tunnel to escape the heat. The tunnel has a rich history and you'll find different expo's and events throughout the year inside the tunnel.
Good to know
Most things in the old city are within walking distance. However, trams and busses are available, easy and affordable. You can get tickets at small kiosks you can find in the city. You can also take an uber. This is especially nice to get from the airport to the city center.
Accomodation (where we stayed)
Budget: Swanky Mint Hostel
A little bit more expensive but really nice: Doma Zagreb
Croatian Kuna (HRK)