10 Reasons to Visit Zagreb, Croatia

Zagreb might not be the #1 capital city on your list – but it should be. A city that is truly one that must be visited to be appreciated fully, this Croatian metropolis is a combination of old architecture, modern buildings, and everything in between. With a flat geographical profile, this city can be explored by car, bike, or – the best way – on foot, taking in all of the beautiful sights along the way. 

Not only is Zagreb filled with diverse cultural attractions, a gorgeous landscape, and nearby nature attractions – like the stunning Plitvice Lakes and Adriatic Coast with the bright, blue sea – but this city is a mecca for Croatian culture. 

Let’s see the top 10 reasons why you should visit Zagreb once you’re allowed to freely travel!

10. Plenty of Sights in a Small Area!


Zagreb – By By Nick Savchenko from Kiev, Ukraine – Zagreb, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=66690098

Much of Zagreb is condensed, making it a fairly easy city to ‘see’ in just a few days on holiday or during a weekend getaway. Although you’ll need much more time to get a real feel for the lifestyle, you can easily visit numerous cultural institutions in a short time period. 

Walk around on foot and visit the Zagreb Cathedral, Saint Mark’s Church, Mestrovic Atelier, the Croatian Museum of Native Art, Mimara Museum, and the Museum of Nikola Tesla. 

9. Sip Coffee at One of the Many Cafes

Tkalciceva Street with many cafes, bars and restaurants – By By Qaalvin, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=53786216

If you are a fan of sipping a hot latte or an iced cappuccino, Zagreb is the perfect spot to sit outside and people-watch during the summer months. Croatia is a culture of enjoying what you are currently eating and drinking, taking your time, and spending your meal with friends, or enjoying the peace and quiet by yourself.

Stroll through the streets of Zagreb and pick whichever cafe seems like your style – we recommend Cogito Coffee Shop, In The Yard, or Quahwa.

8. Imbibe With Some Croatian Beer 

Ozujsko is the most popular beer brand in Croatia – By By David Bailey – Flickr: Otok Rab – June 2011, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=17451087

If you visit Croatia on a hot summer day, nothing is more refreshing than an ice-cold beer sitting outside in zagreb. Croatia is a little behind when comparing their beer and wine with the rest of Europe, but when you try the local craft beers, you can see why this country is making its way up in notoriety. 

Check out Craft Room, Faking Craft Bar, Tolkien’s House, or The Beertija for some refreshing pale ales.

7. Sit Outside At the Local Parks

Park Maksimir – By By Mister No, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=55255229

There are many green spaces in Zagreb for a quick stroll, a picnic, or sunabthing on a hot summer day. The perfect spot to escape from the bustling city, Zagreb’s parks offer a serene break from the thousands of pedestrains on the cobblestone streets.

Head to Bundek City Park, Maksimir Park, or Park Ribnjak for a nature break. 

6. On a Budget? No Problem!

Zagrebacka Uspinjaca Funicular – By By Roberta F., CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=19984048

Unlike other European countries with poor exchange rates or high-priced attractions – we’re looking at you, London – Zagreb, and Croatia as a whole, is known for its’ low prices and affordable nature. 

Zagreb is very cheap and one of the most budget-friendly capital cities to visit in Europe -and the entire world. Most attractions in Zagreb are free, or low-priced, with almost all tourist activities costing less than just 15 euros for an unforgettable experience.

5. Go back in time in the Historic Upper Town

Ban Jelacic Square before 1900 – By By Unknown – https://web.archive.org/web/20160913095142/http://www.balkanforum.info/f16/ehemals-tuerkische-balkan-zivilisiert-wurde-241364/index2.html, PD-US, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7639174

If you are a history buff, or just enjoy gazing at old-school and beautiful architecture that takes you back a few hundred years, then head to the Upper town of Zagreb to soak in some Croatian culture. Perched on two hills encapsulated by Renaissance walls, the Upper Town is home to many of the tourist attractions you’ll find in guide books. 

4. Stay healthy with some local produce

Dolac – By By Rilegator – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=77605027

Get a taste of what many Croatian dishes are made of by shopping for, and cooking with, some local produce. Head to Dolac Market, a colorful, busy, exciting, and open-air market that is home to some of the freshest fruits and vegetables in Europe. 

If Dolac is a little too busy for you on a hot summer day, head to Mali Plac to buy from some smaller grocers.

3. Day Trip to Plitvice Lakes

Plitvice Lakes – By By Donarreiskoffer – Own work at en-Wikipedia 1200×1600 (905316 bytes), Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=395731

Plitvice Lakes is home to some of the clearest water and most beautiful waterfalls in Europe. A half-day or day trip away from Zagreb, this insanely popular tourist attraction is extremely busy for a reason. With sixteen crystal clear lakes, boardwalks for easy walking, hiking trails for a full-day exploration, and a ferry boat ride for some relaxation, this natural paradise has it all.

2. Helpful Locals!

Prva Voznja – By By Mudroslov – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=75984348

Are you afraid of suffering from some culture shock when you head to Croatia? Don’t worry – although some locals may not speak English, they will certainly try their best to help answer your question. With a friendly demeanor that is often amused and interested to see foreigners, Croatian nationals are extremely nice and polite people.

1. The Atmosphere is Unbeatable!

Tkalciceva Zagreb – By By Modzzak – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=5061266

If you are searching for an authentic European experience that combines history, culture, modern attractions, different ethnicities, and cultural attractions, Zagreb is the place to be. When searching for your next destination holiday once it is safe to travel again, Zagreb should be at the top of your list.