Zagreb (// ZAH-greb, Croatian pronunciation: [zǎːɡreb] ( listen)) is the capital and the largest city of Croatia. It is located in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately 122 m (400 ft) above sea level. The estimated population of the city in 2018 is 809,932. The population of Zagreb urban agglomeration is slightly above 1.1 million inhabitants and it makes approximately a quarter of a total population of Croatia.
|City of Zagreb|
|County||City of Zagreb|
|Free royal city||1242|
17 city districts|
218 local committees
|• Mayor||Milan Bandić (BM 365)|
|• City Assembly|
|• City||641 km2 (247 sq mi)|
|• Urban||162.2 km2 (62.6 sq mi)|
|• Metro||3,719 km2 (1,436 sq mi)|
|Elevation||158 m (518 ft)|
|Highest elevation||1,035 m (3,396 ft)|
|Lowest elevation||122 m (400 ft)|
|Population (2018 census)|
|• Estimate (2018)||810,003|
|• Density||1,300/km2 (3,200/sq mi)|
|• Metro density||300/km2 (790/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
|Postal code||HR-10 000, HR-10 010, HR-10 020, HR-10 040, HR-10 090|
|Area code||+385 1|
|- Total||$32 billion / €28.7 billion|
|- Per capita||$40,404 / €36,237|
|HDI (2015)||0.885 – very high|
Zagreb is a city with a rich history dating from the Roman times to the present day. The oldest settlement located in the vicinity of the city was the Roman Andautonia, in today's Ščitarjevo. The name "Zagreb" is recorded in 1134, in reference to the foundation of the settlement at Kaptol in 1094. Zagreb became a free royal town in 1242. In 1851 Zagreb had its first mayor, Janko Kamauf.
Zagreb has a special status in the Croatia's administrative division and is a consolidated city-county (but separated from Zagreb County), and is administratively subdivided into 17 city districts. Most of them are at a low elevation along the river Sava valley, whereas northern and northeastern city districts, such as Podsljeme and Sesvete districts are situated in the foothills of the Medvednica mountain, making the city's geographical image rather diverse. The city extends over 30 kilometres (19 miles) east-west and around 20 kilometres (12 miles) north-south.
The transport connections, concentration of industry, scientific, and research institutions and industrial tradition underlie its leading economic position in Croatia. Zagreb is the seat of the central government, administrative bodies, and almost all government ministries. Almost all of the largest Croatian companies, media, and scientific institutions have their headquarters in the city. Zagreb is the most important transport hub in Croatia where Central Europe, the Mediterranean and Southeast Europe meet, making the Zagreb area the centre of the road, rail and air networks of Croatia. It is a city known for its diverse economy, high quality of living, museums, sporting, and entertainment events. Its main branches of economy are high-tech industries and the service sector.
The etymology of the name Zagreb is unclear. It was used of the united city only from 1852, but it had been in use as the name of the Zagreb Diocese since the 12th century, and was increasingly used of the city in the 17th century. The name is first recorded in a charter by Ostrogon archbishop Felician, dated 1134, mentioned as Zagrabiensem episcopatum. The older form of the name is Zagrab. The modern Croatian form Zagreb is first recorded in a 1689 map by Nicolas Sanson. An even older form is reflected in Hungarian Zabrag (recorded from c. 1200 and in use until the 18th century). For this, Desy (1990) proposes the etymology of Chabrag, a well-attested hypocorism of the name Cyprian. The same form is reflected in a number of Hungarian toponyms, such as Csepreg.
The name Agram was used in German in the Habsburg period; this name has been classified as "probably of Roman origin" but according to Desy (1990) it could be an Austrian German reanalysis of *Zugram.  In Middle Latin and Modern Latin, Zagreb is known as Agranum (the name of an unrelated Arabian city in Strabo), Zagrabia or Mons Graecensis (also Mons Crecensis, in reference to Grič (Gradec)).
In Croatian folk etymology, the name of the city has been derived from either the verb za-grab-, meaning "to scoop" or "to dig". One folk legend illustrating this derivation ties the name to a drought of the early 14th century, during which Augustin Kažotić (c. 1260–1323) is said to have dug a well which miraculously produced water. In another legend, a city governor is thirsty and orders a girl named Manda to "scoop" water from Manduševac well (nowadays a fountain in Ban Jelačić Square), using the imperative: zagrabi, Mando! ("Scoop, Manda!").
The oldest settlement located near today's Zagreb was a Roman town of Andautonia, now Šćitarjevo, which existed between the 1st and the 5th century AD. The first recorded appearance of the name Zagreb is dated to 1094, at which time the city existed as two different city centres: the smaller, eastern Kaptol, inhabited mainly by clergy and housing Zagreb Cathedral, and the larger, western Gradec, inhabited mainly by craftsmen and merchants. Gradec and Kaptol were united in 1851 by ban Josip Jelačić, who was credited for this, with the naming the main city square, Ban Jelačić Square in his honour. During the period of former Yugoslavia, Zagreb remained an important economic centre of the country, and was the second largest city. After Croatia declared independence from Yugoslavia, Zagreb was proclaimed its capital.
The history of Zagreb dates as far back as 1094 A.D. when the Hungarian King Ladislaus, returning from his campaign against Croatia, founded a diocese. Alongside the bishop's see, the canonical settlement Kaptol developed north of Zagreb Cathedral, as did the fortified settlement Gradec on the neighbouring hill; the border between the two being the Medveščak stream. Today the latter is Zagreb's Upper Town (Gornji Grad) and is one of the best preserved urban nuclei in Croatia. Both settlements came under Tatar attack in 1242. As a sign of gratitude for offering him a safe haven from the Tatars the Croatian and Hungarian King Bela IV bestowed Gradec with a Golden Bull, which offered its citizens exemption from county rule and autonomy, as well as its own judicial system.
16th to 18th centuriesEdit
There were numerous connections between the Kaptol diocese and the free sovereign town of Gradec for both economic and political reasons, but they weren't known as an integrated city, even as Zagreb became the political centre and, representing both Croatia, Slavonia and Dalmatia, first convened at Gradec. Zagreb was chosen as the seat of the Ban of Croatia in 1621 under ban Nikola Frankopan.
At the invitation of the Croatian Parliament, the Jesuits came to Zagreb and built the first grammar school, the St. Catherine's Church and monastery. In 1669, they founded an academy where philosophy, theology and law were taught, the forerunner of today's University of Zagreb.
During the 17th and 18th centuries, Zagreb was badly devastated by fire and the plague. In 1776, the royal council (government) moved from Varaždin to Zagreb and during the reign of Joseph II Zagreb became the headquarters of the Varaždin and Karlovac general command.
19th to mid-20th centuryEdit
In the 19th century, Zagreb was the centre of the Croatian National Revival and saw the erection of important cultural and historic institutions. In 1850, the town was united under its first mayor – Janko Kamauf.
After the 1880 Zagreb earthquake, up to the 1914 outbreak of World War I, development flourished and the town received the characteristic layout which it has today. The first horse-drawn tram was used in 1891. The construction of the railway lines enabled the old suburbs to merge gradually into Donji Grad, characterised by a regular block pattern that prevails in Central European cities. This bustling core hosts many imposing buildings, monuments, and parks as well as a multitude of museums, theatres and cinemas. An electric power plant was built in 1907.
The first half of the 20th century saw a considerable expansion of Zagreb. Before World War I, the city expanded and neighbourhoods like Stara Peščenica in the east and Črnomerec in the west were created. After the war, working-class districts such as Trnje emerged between the railway and the Sava, whereas the construction of residential districts on the hills of the southern slopes of Medvednica was completed between the two World Wars.
In the 1920s, the population of Zagreb increased by 70 percent — the largest demographic boom in the history of the town. In 1926, the first radio station in the region began broadcasting from Zagreb, and in 1947 the Zagreb Fair was opened.
During World War II, Zagreb became the capital of the Independent State of Croatia, which was backed by Nazi Germany and the Italians. The history of Zagreb in World War II became rife with incidents of regime terror and resistance sabotage, and the Ustaša regime had thousands of people executed during the war in and near the city. The city was liberated by the Partisans at the end of the war. From 1945 until 1990, Zagreb was the capital of the Socialist Republic of Croatia, one of the six constituent socialist republics of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
The area between the railway and the Sava river witnessed a new construction boom after World War II. After the mid-1950s, construction of new residential areas south of the Sava river began, resulting in Novi Zagreb (Croatian for New Zagreb), originally called "Južni Zagreb" (Southern Zagreb). Today Novi Zagreb is divided in two city districts: Novi Zagreb-zapad (West Novi Zagreb) and Novi Zagreb-istok (East Novi Zagreb)
The city also expanded westward and eastward, incorporating Dubrava, Podsused, Jarun, Blato and other settlements. The cargo railway hub and the international airport Pleso were built south of the Sava river. The largest industrial zone (Žitnjak) in the south-eastern part of the city represents an extension of the industrial zones on the eastern outskirts of the city, between the Sava and the Prigorje region. Zagreb also hosted the Summer Universiade in 1987.
During the 1991–1995 Croatian War of Independence, it was a scene of some sporadic fighting surrounding its JNA army barracks, but escaped major damage. In May 1995, it was targeted by Serb rocket artillery in two Zagreb rocket attacks which killed seven civilians.
An urbanised area connects Zagreb with the surrounding towns of Zaprešić, Samobor, Dugo Selo and Velika Gorica. Sesvete was the first and the closest area to become a part of the agglomeration and is already included in the City of Zagreb for administrative purposes and now forms the easternmost city district.
Area and population developmentEdit
(within city limits at that time)
(within today's city limits)
|1805||3.33||7,706[nb 2](~11 000 in total)|
|The data in column 3 refers to the population in the city borders as of the census in question. Column 4 is calculated for the territory now defined as the City of Zagreb (Narodne Novine 97/10).|
The climate of Zagreb is classified as a humid continental climate ('Dfb. in Köppen climate classification system). Zagreb has four separate seasons. Summers are warm, at the end of May the temperatures start rising and it is often pleasant with occasional thunderstorms. Heatwaves can occur but are short-lived. Temperatures rise above 30 °C (86 °F) on an average 14.6 days each summer. Rainfall is abundant in the summertime and it continues to be in autumn as well. Zagreb is Europe's 9th wettest capital, behind Luxembourg and ahead of Brussels, Belgium. Autumn in its early stages is mild with an increase of rainy days and precipitation as well as a steady temperature fall towards its end. Morning fog is common from mid-October to January with northern city districts at the foothills of the Medvednica mountain as well as those along the Sava river being more prone to all-day fog accumulation. Winters are cold with a precipitation decrease pattern. Even though there is no discernible dry season, February is the driest month with 39 mm of precipitation. On average there are 29 days with snowfall with first snow falling in early November. Springs are generally mild and pleasant with frequent weather changes and are windier than other seasons. Sometimes cold spells can occur, mostly in its early stages. The average daily mean temperature in the winter is around 1 °C (34 °F) (from December to February) and the average temperature in the summer is 22.0 °C (71.6 °F).
The highest recorded temperature at the Maksimir weather station was 40.4 °C (104.7 °F) in July 1950, and lowest was −27.3 °C (−17.1 °F) in February 1956. A temperature of −30.5 °C (−22.9 °F) was recorded on the since defunct Borongaj Airfield in February 1940.
|Climate data for Zagreb (1971–2000, extremes 1949–2014)|
|Record high °C (°F)||19.4
|Average high °C (°F)||3.7
|Daily mean °C (°F)||0.3
|Average low °C (°F)||−3.0
|Record low °C (°F)||−24.3
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||43.2
|Average precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm)||9.8||9.4||11.0||13.0||13.5||13.7||11.2||10.4||10.4||10.9||11.3||11.0||135.6|
|Average snowy days (≥ 1.0 cm)||10.3||7.1||1.8||0.2||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.0||2.9||6.7||29.0|
|Average relative humidity (%)||82.5||76.4||70.3||67.5||68.3||69.7||69.1||72.1||77.7||81.3||83.6||84.8||75.3|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||55.8||98.9||142.6||168.0||229.4||234.0||275.9||257.3||189.0||124.0||63.0||49.6||1,887.5|
|Percent possible sunshine||23||39||43||45||54||55||63||63||54||41||26||23||47|
|Source: Croatian Meteorological and Hydrological Service|
|Climate data for Zagreb|
|Mean daily daylight hours||9.0||10.0||12.0||14.0||15.0||16.0||15.0||14.0||13.0||11.0||9.0||9.0||12.3|
|Average Ultraviolet index||1||2||3||5||7||8||8||7||5||3||1||1||4.3|
|Source: Weather Atlas|
The most important historical high-rise constructions are Neboder on Ban Jelačić Square, Cibona Tower (1987) and Zagrepčanka (1976) on Savska Street, Mamutica in Travno (Novi Zagreb – istok district, built in 1974) and Zagreb TV Tower on Sljeme (built in 1973).
In the 2000s, the City Assembly approved a new plan that allowed for the many recent high-rise buildings in Zagreb, such as the Almeria Tower, Eurotower, HOTO Tower, Zagrebtower and one of the tallest skyscrapers Sky Office Tower.
Due to a long-standing restriction that forbade the construction of 10-story or higher buildings, most of Zagreb's high-rise buildings date from the 1970s and 1980s and new apartment buildings on the outskirts of the city are usually 4–8 floors tall. Exceptions to the restriction have been made in recent years, such as permitting the construction of high-rise buildings in Lanište or Kajzerica.
The wider Zagreb area has been continuously inhabited since the prehistoric period, as witnessed by archaeological findings in the Veternica cave from the Paleolithic and excavation of the remains of the Roman Andautonia near the present village of Šćitarjevo.
To the north is the Medvednica Mountain (Croatian: Zagrebačka gora), with its highest peak Sljeme (1,035 m), where one of the tallest structures in Croatia, Zagreb TV Tower is located. The Sava and the Kupa valleys are to the south of Zagreb, and the region of Hrvatsko Zagorje is located on the other (northern) side of the Medvednica hill. In mid-January 2005, Sljeme held its first World Ski Championship tournament.
From the summit, weather permitting, the vista reaches as far as Velebit Range along Croatia's rocky northern coast, as well as the snow-capped peaks of the towering Julian Alps in neighbouring Slovenia. There are several lodging villages, offering accommodation and restaurants for hikers. Skiers visit Sljeme, which has four ski-runs, three ski-lifts and a chairlift.
The old Medvedgrad, a recently restored medieval burg was built in the 13th century on Medvednica hill. It overlooks the western part of the city and also hosts the Shrine of the Homeland, a memorial with an eternal flame, where Croatia pays reverence to all its heroes fallen for homeland in its history, customarily on national holidays. The ruined medieval fortress Susedgrad is located on far-western side of Medvednica hill. It has been abandoned since the early 17th century, but it is visited during the year.
Zagreb occasionally experiences earthquakes, due to the proximity of Žumberak-Medvednica fault zone. It's classified as an area of high seismic activity. The area around Medvednica was the epicentre of the 1880 Zagreb earthquake (magnitude 6.3), and the area is known for occasional landslide threatening houses in the area. The proximity of strong seismic sources presents a real danger of strong earthquakes. Croatian Chief of Office of Emergency Management Pavle Kalinić stated Zagreb experiences around 400 earthquakes a year, most of them being imperceptible. However, in case of a strong earthquake, it's expected that 3,000 people would die and up to 15,000 would be wounded.
Zagreb is by far the largest city in Croatia in terms of area and population. The official 2011 census counted 792,325 residents, although due to a substantial immigrant influx the number of people residing in the city is much higher.
Zagreb metropolitan area population is slightly above 1.1 million inhabitants, as it includes the Zagreb County. Zagreb metropolitan area makes approximately a quarter of a total population of Croatia. In 1997, the City of Zagreb itself was given special County status, separating it from Zagreb County, although it remains the administrative centre of both.
The majority of its citizens are Croats making up 93% of the city's population (2011 census). The same census records around 55,000 residents belonging to ethnic minorities: 17,526 Serbs (2.22%), 8,119 Bosniaks (1.03%), 4,292 Albanians (0.54%), 2,755 Romani (0.35%), 2,132 Slovenes (0.27%), 1,194 Macedonians (0.15%), 1,191 Montenegrins (0.15%), and a number of other smaller communities.
|2.||Gornji Grad – Medveščak||10.12||31,279||36,384||3,593.5|
|5.||Peščenica – Žitnjak||35.30||56,446||58,283||1,651.3|
|6.||Novi Zagreb – istok||16.54||59,227||65,301||3,947.1|
|7.||Novi Zagreb – zapad||62.59||58,025||48,981||782.5|
|8.||Trešnjevka – sjever||5.83||55,342||55,358||9,498.6|
|9.||Trešnjevka – jug||9.84||66,595||67,162||6,828.1|
|14.||Podsused – Vrapče||36.05||45,771||42,360||1,175.1|
City districts are subdivided in 218 local committees as primary units of local self-government.
The city itself is not the only standalone settlement in the City of Zagreb administrative area – there are a number of larger urban settlements like Sesvete and Lučko and a number of smaller villages attached to it whose population is tracked separately. There are 70 settlements in the City of Zagreb administrative area:
- Adamovec, population 975
- Belovar, population 378
- Blaguša, population 594
- Botinec, population 9
- Brebernica, population 49
- Brezovica, population 594
- Budenec, population 323
- Buzin, population 1,055
- Cerje, population 398
- Demerje, population 721
- Desprim, population 377
- Dobrodol, population 1,203
- Donji Čehi, population 232
- Donji Dragonožec, population 577
- Donji Trpuci, population 428
- Drenčec, population 131
- Drežnik Brezovički, population 656
- Dumovec, population 903
- Đurđekovec, population 778
- Gajec, population 311
- Glavnica Donja, population 544
- Glavnica Gornja, population 226
- Glavničica, population 229
- Goli Breg, population 406
- Goranec, population 449
- Gornji Čehi, population 363
- Gornji Dragonožec, population 295
- Gornji Trpuci, population 87
- Grančari, population 221
- Havidić Selo, population 53
- Horvati, population 1,490
- Hrašće Turopoljsko, population 1,202
- Hrvatski Leskovac, population 2,687
- Hudi Bitek, population 441
- Ivanja Reka, population 1,800
- Jesenovec, population 460
- Ježdovec, population 1,728
- Kašina, population 1,548
- Kašinska Sopnica, population 245
- Kučilovina, population 219
- Kućanec, population 228
- Kupinečki Kraljevec, population 1,957
- Lipnica, population 207
- Lučko, population 3,010
- Lužan, population 719
- Mala Mlaka, population 636
- Markovo Polje, population 425
- Moravče, population 663
- Odra, population 1,866
- Odranski Obrež, population 1,578
- Paruževina, population 632
- Planina Donja, population 554
- Planina Gornja, population 247
- Popovec, population 937
- Prekvršje, population 809
- Prepuštovec, population 332
- Sesvete, population 54,085
- Soblinec, population 978
- Starjak, population 227
- Strmec, population 645
- Šašinovec, population 678
- Šimunčevec, population 271
- Veliko Polje, population 1,668
- Vuger Selo, population 273
- Vugrovec Donji, population 442
- Vugrovec Gornji, population 357
- Vurnovec, population 201
- Zadvorsko, population 1,288
- Zagreb, population 688,163
- Žerjavinec, population 556
Government and politicsEdit
The current mayor of Zagreb is Milan Bandić (BM 365 –Labour and Solidarity Party). He was confirmed as mayor on 4 June 2017 (Zagreb local elections 2017, second round). Two deputy mayors (vice mayoresses) are Jelena Pavičić-Vukičević and Olivera Jurković-Majić.
The Zagreb Assembly is composed of 51 representatives. Last elections were held on 21 May 2017 (Zagreb local elections). The current structure of the city assembly by party lines is as follows (2 December 2017):
|Political party||No. of members per party||Graph|
|Ind. Sandra Švaljek||2|
Note: Out of 9 formally independent councilors, 6 were elected from the list led by BM 365
- Zagreb local elections, 2017
- Zagreb local elections, 2013
- Zagreb local elections, 2009
- Zagreb local elections, 2005
According to the Constitution, the city of Zagreb, as the capital of Croatia, has a special status. As such, Zagreb performs self-governing public affairs of both city and county. It is also the seat of the Zagreb County which encircles Zagreb.
The city administration bodies are the Zagreb City Assembly (Gradska skupština Grada Zagreba) as the representative body and the mayor of Zagreb (Gradonačelnik Grada Zagreba) who is the executive head of the city.
The City Assembly is the representative body of the citizens of the City of Zagreb elected for a four-year term on the basis of universal suffrage in direct elections by secret ballot using proportional system with d'Hondt method in a manner specified by law. There are 51 representatives in the City Assembly, among them president and vicepresidents of the assembly are elected by the representatives.
Prior to 2009, the mayor was elected by the City Assembly. It was changed to direct elections by majoritarian vote (two-round system) in 2009. The mayor is the head of the city administration and has two deputies (directly elected together with him/her). The term of office of the mayor (and his/her deputies) is four years. The mayor (with the deputies) may be recalled by a referendum according to law (not less than 20% of all electors in the City of Zagreb or not less than two-thirds of the Zagreb Assembly city deputies have the right to initiate a city referendum regarding recalling of the mayor; when a majority of voters taking part in the referendum vote in favour of the recall, provided that majority includes not less than one third of all persons entitled to vote in the City of Zagreb, i.e. ⅓ of persons in the City of Zagreb electoral register, the mayor's mandate shall be deemed revoked and special mayoral by-elections shall be held).
In the City of Zagreb the mayor is also responsible for the state administration (due to the special status of Zagreb as a "city with county rights", there isn't State Administration Office which in all counties performs tasks of the central government).
City administration offices, institutions and services (18 city offices, 1 public institute or bureau and 2 city services) have been founded for performing activities within the self-administrative sphere and activities entrusted by the state administration. The city administrative bodies are managed by the principals (appointed by the mayor for a four-year term of office, may be appointed again to the same duty). The City Assembly Professional Service is managed by the secretary of the City Assembly (appointed by the Assembly).
Twin towns — sister citiesEdit
- Bologna, Italy (since 1963)
- Mainz, Germany (since 1967)
- Saint Petersburg, Russia (since 1968)
- Tromsø, Norway (since 1971)
- Buenos Aires, Argentina (since 1972)
- Kyoto, Japan (since 1972)
- Lisbon, Portugal (since 1977)
- Pittsburgh, USA (since 1980)
- Shanghai, China (since 1980)
- Budapest, Hungary (since 1994)
- La Paz, Bolivia (since 2000)
- Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina (since 2001)
- Ljubljana, Slovenia (since 2001)
- Podgorica, Montenegro (since 2006)
- Tabriz, Iran (since 2006)
- Ankara, Turkey (since 2008)
- London, United Kingdom (since 2009)
- Prizren, Kosovo[a] (since 2010)
- Skopje, Macedonia (since 2011)
- Warsaw, Poland (since 2011)
- Astana, Kazakhstan (since 2014)
- Rome, Italy (since 2014)
- Vienna, Austria (since 2014)
- Petrinja, Croatia (since 2015)
- Vukovar, Croatia (since 2016)
The city has partnership arrangements with:
Zagreb is an important tourist centre, not only in terms of passengers travelling from the rest of Europe to the Adriatic Sea, but also as a travel destination itself. Since the end of the war, it has attracted close to a million visitors annually, mainly from Austria, Germany and Italy. However, the city has even greater potential as many tourists that visit Croatia skip Zagreb in order to visit the beaches along the Croatian Adriatic coast and old historic Renaissance cities such as Dubrovnik, Split, and Zadar. There are many interesting things for tourists in Zagreb, for example, the two statues of Saint George, one at the Republic of Croatia Square, the other at Kamenita vrata, where the image of Virgin Mary is said to be only thing that hasn't burned in the 17th-century fire. Also, there is an art installation starting in Bogovićeva street, called Nine Views. Most people don't know what the statue "Prizemljeno Sunce" (The Grounded Sun) is for, and just scrawl graffiti or signatures on it, but it's actually the Sun scaled down, with many planets situated all over Zagreb in scale with the Sun.
The historical part of the city to the north of Ban Jelačić Square is composed of the Gornji Grad and Kaptol, a medieval urban complex of churches, palaces, museums, galleries and government buildings that are popular with tourists on sightseeing tours. The historic district can be reached on foot, starting from Jelačić Square, the centre of Zagreb, or by a funicular on nearby Tomićeva Street. Each Saturday, (from April till the end of September), on St. Mark's Square in the Upper town, tourists can meet members of the Order of The Silver Dragon (Red Srebrnog Zmaja), who reenact famous historical conflicts between Gradec and Kaptol. It's a great opportunity for all visitors to take photographs of authentic and fully functional historical replicas of medieval armour.
In 2010 more than 600,000 tourists visited the city, with a 10% increase seen in 2011. In 2012 a total of 675 707 tourists visited the city. The record number of tourists visited Zagreb in 2017. – 1.286.087, up 16% compared to the year before, which generated 2.263.758 overnight stays, up 14,8%.
Souvenirs and gastronomyEdit
Numerous shops, boutiques, store houses and shopping centres offer a variety of quality clothing. There are about fourteen big shopping centres in Zagreb. Zagreb's offerings include crystal, china and ceramics, wicker or straw baskets, and top-quality Croatian wines and gastronomic products.
Notable Zagreb souvenirs are the tie or cravat, an accessory named after Croats who wore characteristic scarves around their necks in the Thirty Years' War in the 17th century and the ball-point pen, a tool developed from the inventions by Slavoljub Eduard Penkala, an inventor and a citizen of Zagreb.
Many Zagreb restaurants offer various specialties of national and international cuisine. Domestic products which deserve to be tasted include turkey, duck or goose with mlinci (a kind of pasta), štrukli (cottage cheese strudel), sir i vrhnje (cottage cheese with cream), kremšnite (custard slices in flaky pastry), and orehnjača (traditional walnut roll).
Zagreb's numerous museums reflect the history, art and culture not only of Zagreb and Croatia, but also of Europe and the world. Around thirty collections in museums and galleries comprise more than 3.6 million various exhibits, excluding church and private collections.
The Archaeological Museum (19 Nikola Šubić Zrinski Square) collections, today consisting of nearly 450,000 varied archaeological artefacts and monuments, have been gathered over the years from many different sources. These holdings include evidence of Croatian presence in the area. The most famous are the Egyptian collection, the Zagreb mummy and bandages with the oldest Etruscan inscription in the world (Liber Linteus Zagrabiensis), as well as the numismatic collection.
Modern Gallery (Croatian: Moderna galerija) holds the most important and comprehensive collection of paintings, sculptures and drawings by 19th- and 20th-century Croatian artists. The collection numbers more than 10,000 works of art, housed since 1934 in the historic Vranyczany Palace in the centre of Zageb, overlooking the Zrinjevac Park. A secondary gallery is the Josip Račić Studio at Margaretska 3.
Croatian Natural History Museum (1 Demetrova Street) holds one of the world's most important collection of Neanderthal remains found at one site. These are the remains, stone weapons and tools of prehistoric Krapina man. The holdings of the Croatian Natural History Museum comprise more than 250,000 specimens distributed among various collections.
Technical Museum (18 Savska Street) was founded in 1954 and it maintains the oldest preserved machine in the area, dating from 1830, which is still operational. The museum exhibits numerous historic aircraft, cars, machinery and equipment. There are some distinct sections in the museum: the Planetarium, the Apisarium, the Mine (model of mines for coal, iron and non-ferrous metals, about 300 m (980 ft) long), and the Nikola Tesla study.
Museum of the City of Zagreb (20 Opatička Street) was established in 1907 by the Association of the Braća Hrvatskog Zmaja. It is located in a restored monumental complex (Popov toranj, the Observatory, Zakmardi Granary) of the former Convent of the Poor Clares, of 1650. The Museum deals with topics from the cultural, artistic, economic and political history of the city spanning from Roman finds to the modern period. The holdings comprise over 80,000 items arranged systematically into collections of artistic and mundane objects characteristic of the city and its history.
Arts and Crafts Museum (10 Republic of Croatia Square) was founded in 1880 with the intention of preserving the works of art and craft against the new predominance of industrial products. With its 160,000 exhibits, the Arts and Crafts Museum is a national-level museum for artistic production and the history of material culture in Croatia.
Ethnographic Museum (14 Ivan Mažuranić Square) was founded in 1919. It lies in the fine Secession building of the one-time Trades Hall of 1903. The ample holdings of about 80,000 items cover the ethnographic heritage of Croatia, classified in the three cultural zones: the Pannonian, Dinaric and Adriatic.
Mimara Museum (5 Roosevelt Square) was founded with a donation from Ante "Mimara" Topić and opened to the public in 1987. It is located in a late 19th-century neo-Renaissance palace. The holdings comprise 3,750 works of art of various techniques and materials, and different cultures and civilisations.
Croatian Museum of Naïve Art (works by Croatian primitivists at 3 Ćirilometodska Street) is one of the first museums of naïve art in the world. The museum holds works of Croatian naïve expression of the 20th century. It is located in the 18th-century Raffay Palace in the Gornji Grad. The museum holdings consist of almost 2000 works of art – paintings, sculptures, drawings and prints, mainly by Croatians but also by other well-known world artists. From time to time, the museum organises topics and retrospective exhibitions by naïve artists, expert meetings and educational workshops and playrooms.
The Museum of Contemporary Art was founded in 1954. Its new building hosts a rich collection of Croatian and international contemporary visual art which has been collected throughout the decades from the nineteen-fifties till today. The museum is located in the centre of Novi Zagreb, opened in 2009. The old location, 2 St. Catherine's Square, is part of the Kulmer Palace in the Gornji Grad.
Other museums and galleries Valuable historical collections are also found in the Croatian School Museum, the Croatian Hunting Museum, the Croatian Sports Museum, the Croatian Post and Telecommunications Museum, the HAZU (Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts) Glyptotheque (collection of monuments), and the HAZU Graphics Cabinet.
The Strossmayer Gallery of Old Masters (11 Zrinski Square) offers permanent holdings presenting European paintings from the 14th to 19th centuries, and the Ivan Meštrović Studio, (8 Mletačka Street) with sculptures, drawings, lithography portfolios and other items, was a donation of this great artist to his homeland The Museum and Gallery Center (4 Jesuit Square) introduces on various occasions the Croatian and foreign cultural and artistic heritage. The Art Pavilion (22 King Tomislav Square) by Viennese architects Hellmer and Fellmer who were the most famous designers of theatres in Central Europe is a neo-classical exhibition complex and one of the landmarks of the downtown. The exhibitions are also held in the impressive Meštrović building on Žrtava Fašizma Square — the Home of Croatian Fine Artists. The World Center "Wonder of Croatian Naïve Art" (12 Ban Jelačić Square) exhibits masterpieces of Croatian naïve art as well as the works of a new generation of artists. The Modern Gallery (1 Hebrangova Street) comprises all relevant fine artists of the 19th and 20th centuries. The Museum of Broken Relationships at 2 Ćirilometodska holds people's mementos of past relationships. It is the first private museum in the country. Lauba House (23a Baruna Filipovića) presents works from Filip Trade Collection, a large private collection of modern and contemporary Croatian art and current artistic production.
Zagreb has been, and is, hosting some of the most popular mainstream artists, in the past few years their concerts held the Rolling Stones, U2, Eric Clapton, Deep Purple, Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Roger Waters, Depeche Mode, Prodigy, Beyoncé, Nick Cave, Jamiroquai, Manu Chao, Massive Attack, Metallica, Snoop Dogg, Lady Gaga, Duran Duran as well as some of world most recognised underground artists such as Dimmu Borgir, Sepultura, Melvins, Mastodon and many more. Zagreb is also a home of the INmusic festival, one of the biggest open air festivals in Croatia which is being held every year, usually at the end of June. There are also many jazz festivals like Zagreb Jazz Festival which was the host for some of the most popular artists from world jazz scene like Pat Metheny or Sonny Rollins just to name a few. Zagreb is also home of many others club festivals like Žedno uho where many of indie, rock, metal and electronica artists like Animal Collective, Melvins, Butthole Surfers, Crippled Black Phoenix, NoMeansNo, The National (band), Mark Lanegan, Swans (band), Mudhoney etc. made there performances around the clubs and concert halls of Zagreb. This is mostly recognised because of the city's location, and its good traffic relations with other neighbouring European capital cities such as Vienna and Budapest. This is the effort of Zagreb community to increase the percentage of tourist visits during the summer time, as Croatia, in generally, is a popular destination for many people around the globe during the vacation period.
There are about 20 permanent or seasonal theatres and stages. The Croatian National Theater in Zagreb was built in 1895 and opened by emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria. The most renowned concert hall named "Vatroslav Lisinski", after the composer of the first Croatian opera, was built in 1973.
Animafest, the World Festival of Animated Films, takes place every even-numbered year, and the Music Biennale, the international festival of avant-garde music, every odd-numbered year. It also hosts the annual ZagrebDox documentary film festival. The Festival of the Zagreb Philharmonic and the flowers exhibition Floraart (end of May or beginning of June), the Old-timer Rally annual events. In the summer, theatre performances and concerts, mostly in the Upper Town, are organised either indoors or outdoors. The stage on Opatovina hosts the Zagreb Histrionic Summer theatre events.
Zagreb is also the host of Zagrebfest, the oldest Croatian pop-music festival, as well as of several traditional international sports events and tournaments. The Day of the City of Zagreb on 16 November is celebrated every year with special festivities, especially on the Jarun lake in the southwestern part of the city.
Recreation and sportsEdit
Zagreb is home to numerous sports and recreational centres. Recreational Sports Center Jarun, situated on Jarun Lake in the southwest of the city, has fine shingle beaches, a world-class regatta course, a jogging lane around the lake, several restaurants, many night clubs and a discothèque. Its sports and recreation opportunities include swimming, sunbathing, waterskiing, angling and other water sports, but also beach volleyball, football, basketball, handball, table tennis, and mini-golf.
Dom Sportova, a sport centre in northern Trešnjevka features six halls. The largest two have seating capacity of 5,000 and 3,100 people, respectively. This centre is used for basketball, handball, volleyball, hockey, gymnastics, tennis, etc. It also hosts music events.
Arena Zagreb was finished in 2008. The 16,500-seat arena hosted the 2009 World Men's Handball Championship. The Dražen Petrović Basketball Hall seats 5,400 people. Alongside the hall is the 94-metre (308 ft) high glass Cibona Tower. Sports Park Mladost, situated on the embankment of the Sava river, has an Olympic-size swimming pool, smaller indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a sunbathing terrace, 16 tennis courts as well as basketball, volleyball, handball, football and field hockey courts. A volleyball sports hall is within the park. Sports and Recreational Center Šalata, located in Šalata, only a couple hundred meters from the Jelačić Square, is most attractive for tennis players. It comprises a big tennis court and eight smaller ones, two of which are covered by the so-called "balloon", and another two equipped with lights. The centre also has swimming pools, basketball courts, football fields, a gym and fitness centre, and a four-lane bowling alley. Outdoor ice skating is a popular winter recreation. There are also several fine restaurants within and near the centre.
Maksimir Tennis Center, located in Ravnice east of downtown, consists of two sports blocks. The first comprises a tennis centre situated in a large tennis hall with four courts. There are 22 outdoor tennis courts with lights. The other block offers multipurpose sports facilities: apart from tennis courts, there are handball, basketball and indoor football grounds, as well as track and field facilities, a bocci ball alley and table tennis opportunities.
Recreational swimmers can enjoy a smaller-size indoor swimming pool in Daničićeva Street, and a newly opened indoor Olympic-size pool at Utrine sports centre in Novi Zagreb. Skaters can skate in the skating rink on Trg Sportova (Sports Square) and on the lake Jarun Skaters' park. Hippodrome Zagreb offers recreational horseback riding opportunities, while horse races are held every weekend during the warmer part of the year.
The 38,923-seat Maksimir Stadium, last 10 years under renovation, is located in Maksimir in the northeastern part of the city. The stadium is part of the immense Svetice recreational and sports complex (ŠRC Svetice), south of the Maksimir Park. The complex covers an area of 276,440 m2 (68 acres). It is part of a significant Green Zone, which passes from Medvednica Mountains in the north toward the south. ŠRC Svetice, together with Maksimir Park, creates an ideal connection of areas which are assigned to sport, recreation and leisure.
The latest larger recreational facility is Bundek, a group of two small lakes near the Sava in Novi Zagreb, surrounded by a partly forested park. The location had been used prior to the 1970s, but then went to neglect until 2006 when it was renovated.
Some of the most notable sport clubs in Zagreb are: NK Dinamo Zagreb, KHL Medveščak Zagreb, RK Zagreb, KK Cibona, KK Zagreb, KK Cedevita, NK Zagreb, HAVK Mladost and others. The city hosted the 2016 Davis Cup World Group final between Croatia and Argentina.
The Archdiocese of Zagreb is a metropolitan see of the Catholic Church in Croatia, serving as its religious centre. The current Archbishop is Josip Cardinal Bozanić. The Catholic Church is the largest religious organisation in Zagreb, Catholicism being the predominant religion of Croatia, with over 1.1 million adherents. Zagreb is also the Episcopal see of the Metropolitanate of Zagreb and Ljubljana of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Islamic religious organisation of Croatia has the see in Zagreb. Current president is Mufti Aziz Hasanović. There used to be a mosque in the Meštrović Pavilion during World War II at the Žrtava Fašizma Square, but it was relocated to the neighbourhood of Borovje in Peščenica. Mainstream Protestant churches have also been present in Zagreb – Evangelical (Lutheran) Church and Reformed Christian (Calvinist) Church. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) is also present in the Zagreb neighbourhood of Jarun whereas Jehovah's Witnesses have their headquarters in Central Zagreb. In total there are around 40 non-Catholic religious organisations and denominations in Zagreb with their headquarters and places of worship across the city making it a large and diverse multicultural community.
Economy and infrastructureEdit
The most important branches of industry are: production of electrical machines and devices, chemical, pharmaceutical, textile, food and drink processing. Zagreb is an international trade and business centre, as well as an essential transport hub placed at the crossroads of Central Europe, the Mediterranean and the Southeast Europe. Almost all of the largest Croatian as well as Central European companies and conglomerates such as Agrokor, INA, Hrvatski Telekom have their headquarters in the city.
According to 2008 data, the city of Zagreb has the highest PPP and nominal gross domestic product per capita in Croatia at $32,185 and $27,271 respectively, compared to the Croatian averages of $18,686 and $15,758.
As of May 2015, the average monthly net salary in Zagreb was 6,669 kuna, about €870 (Croatian average is 5,679 kuna, about €740). At the end of 2012, the average unemployment rate in Zagreb was around 9.5%. 34% of companies in Croatia have headquarters in Zagreb, and 38.4% of the Croatian workforce works in Zagreb, including almost all banks, utility and public transport companies.
Zagreb is the hub of five major Croatian highways.
The highway A6 was upgraded in October 2008 and leads from Zagreb to Rijeka, and forming a part of the Pan-European Corridor Vb. The upgrade coincided with the opening of the bridge over the Mura river on the A4 and the completion of the Hungarian M7, which marked the opening of the first freeway corridor between Rijeka and Budapest. The A1 starts at the Lučko interchange and concurs with the A6 up to the Bosiljevo 2 interchange, connecting Zagreb and Split (As of October 2008[update] Vrgorac). A further extension of the A1 up to Dubrovnik is under construction. Both highways are tolled by the Croatian highway authorities Hrvatske autoceste and Autocesta Rijeka - Zagreb.
Highway A3 (formerly named Bratstvo i jedinstvo) was the showpiece of Croatia in the SFRY. It is the oldest Croatian highway. A3 forms a part of the Pan-European Corridor X. The highway starts at the Bregana border crossing, bypasses Zagreb forming the southern arch of the Zagreb bypass and ends at Lipovac near the Bajakovo border crossing. It continues in Southeast Europe in the direction of Near East. This highway is tolled except for the stretch between Bobovica and Ivanja Reka interchanges.
Highway A2 is a part of the Corridor Xa. It connects Zagreb and the frequently congested Macelj border crossing, forming a near-continuous motorway-level link between Zagreb and Western Europe. Forming a part of the Corridor Vb, highway A4 starts in Zagreb forming the northeastern wing of the Zagreb bypass and leads to Hungary until the Goričan border crossing. It is often used highway around Zagreb.
The railway and the highway A3 along the Sava river that extend to Slavonia (towards Slavonski Brod, Vinkovci, Osijek and Vukovar) are some of the busiest traffic corridors in the country. The railway running along the Sutla river and the A2 highway (Zagreb-Macelj) running through Zagorje, as well as traffic connections with the Pannonian region and Hungary (the Zagorje railroad, the roads and railway to Varaždin – Čakovec and Koprivnica) are linked with truck routes. The southern railway connection to Split operates on a high-speed tilting trains line via the Lika region (renovated in 2004 to allow for a five-hour journey); a faster line along the Una river valley is currently in use only up to the border between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The city has an extensive avenue network with numerous main arteries up to ten lanes wide and Zagreb bypass, a congested four-lane highway encircling most of the city. Traffic jams and daytime parking space are a great problem in the wider city centre area during the rush hour. Finding a parking space is supposed to be made somewhat easier by the construction of new underground multi-story parking lots (Importanne Center, Importanne Gallery, Lang Square, Tuškanac, Kvaternik Square, Klaić Street, etc.). The busiest roads are the main east-west arteries, former Highway "Brotherhood and Unity", consisting of Ljubljanska Avenue, Zagrebačka Avenue and Slavonska Avenue; and the Vukovarska Avenue, the closest bypass of the city centre. The avenues were supposed to alleviate traffic problem, but most of them are today gridlocked at rush hour and others, like Branimirova Avenue and Dubrovnik Avenue which are gridlocked for the whole day. European routes E59, E65 and E70 serve Zagreb.
|Name (English)||Name (Croatian)||Year Finished||Type of bridge||Road that goes over||Other Information|
|Podsused Bridge||Podsusedski most||1982||Two-lane road bridge with a commuter train line (not yet completed)||Samoborska Road||Connects Zagreb to its close suburbs by a road to Samobor, the fastest route to Bestovje, Sveta Nedelja and Strmec.|
|Jankomir Bridge||Jankomirski most||1958, 2006 (upgrade)||Four lane road bridge||Ljubljanska Avenue||Connects Ljubljanska Avenue to the Jankomir interchange and Zagreb bypass.|
|Adriatic Bridge||Jadranski most||1981||Six lane road bridge (also carries tram tracks)||Adriatic Avenue||The most famous bridge in Zagreb. The bridge spans from Savska Street in the north to the Remetinec Roundabout in the south.|
|Sava Bridge||Savski most||1938||Pedestrian since the construction of the Adriatic Bridge||Savska Road||The official name at the time of building was New Sava bridge, but it is the oldest still standing bridge over Sava. The bridge is known among experts due to some construction details.|
|Liberty Bridge||Most slobode||1959||Four lane road bridge||Većeslav Holjevac Avenue||It used to hold a pair of bus lanes, but due to the increasing individual traffic and better tram connections across the river, those were converted to normal lanes.|
|Youth Bridge||Most mladosti||1974||Six lane road bridge (also carries tram tracks)||Marin Držić Avenue||Connects eastern Novi Zagreb to the districts of Trnje, Peščenica, Donja Dubrava and Maksimir.|
|Homeland Bridge||Domovinski most||2007||Four-lane road bridge (also carries two bicycle and two pedestrian lanes; has space reserved for light railroad tracks)||Radnička (Workers') Road||This bridge is the last bridge built on Sava to date; it links Peščenica via Radnička street to the Zagreb bypass at Kosnica. It is planned to continue towards Zagreb Airport at Pleso and Velika Gorica, and on to state road D31 going to the south.|
There are also two rail traffic bridges across the Sava, one near the Sava bridge and one near Mičevec, as well as two bridges that are part of the Zagreb bypass, one near Zaprešić (west), and the other near Ivanja Reka (east).
Two additional bridges across the river Sava are proposed: Jarun Bridge and Bundek Bridge.
Public transportation in the city is organised in several layers: the inner parts of the city are mostly covered by trams, the outer city areas and closer suburbs are linked with buses and rapid transit commuter rail.
The public transportation company ZET (Zagrebački električni tramvaj, Zagreb Electric Tram) operates trams, all inner bus lines, and the most of the suburban bus lines, and it is subsidised by the city council.
Taxis are readily available through a network of around 3000 taxi vehicles, but this type of Zagreb's public transport hadn't been particularly popular among the residents until the end of the 2000s due to the monopoly of only one taxi company. In early 2010, numerous transport companies have been allowed to enter the market; consequently the prices significantly dropped whereas the service was immensely improved so the popularity of taxis in Zagreb has been increasing from then onwards.
Zagreb has an extensive tram network with 15 day and 4 night lines covering much of the inner- and middle-suburbs of the city. The first tram line was opened on 5 September 1891 and trams have been serving as a vital component of Zagreb mass transit ever since. Trams usually travel at speeds of 30–50 kilometres per hour (19–31 miles per hour), but slow considerably during rush hour. The network operates at the curb whereas on larger avenues its tracks are situated inside the green belts.
An ambitious program, which entailed replacing old trams with the new and modern ones built mostly in Zagreb by companies Končar elektroindustrija and, to a lesser extent, by TŽV Gredelj, has recently been finished. The new "TMK 2200", trams by the end of 2012 made around 95% of the fleet.
Suburban rail networkEdit
The commuter rail network in Zagreb has existed since 1992. In 2005, suburban rail services were increased to a 15-minute frequency serving the middle and outer suburbs of Zagreb, primarily in the east-west direction and to the southern districts. This has enhanced the commuting opportunities across the city.
A new link to the nearby town of Samobor has been announced and is due to start construction in 2014. This link will be standard-gauge and tie in with normal Croatian Railways operations. The previous narrow-gauge line to Samobor called Samoborček was closed in the 1970s.
Zagreb Airport (IATA: ZAG, ICAO: LDZA) is the main Croatian international airport, a 17 km (11 mi) drive southeast of Zagreb in the city of Velika Gorica. The airport is also the main Croatian airbase featuring a fighter squadron, helicopters, as well as military and freight transport aircraft. The airport had 2,77 millions of passengers in 2016 with a new passenger terminal being opened in late March 2017 that can accommodate up to 5,5 million passengers.
Zagreb also has a second, smaller airport, Lučko (ICAO: LDZL). It is home to sports aeroplanes and a Croatian special police unit, as well as being a military helicopter airbase. Lučko used to be the main airport of Zagreb from 1947 to 1959.
Founded in 1669, the University of Zagreb is the oldest continuously operating university in Croatia and one of the largest and oldest universities in the Southeastern Europe. Ever since its foundation, the university has been continually growing and developing and now consists of 29 faculties, three art academies and the Croatian Studies Centre. More than 200,000 students have attained the Bachelor's degree at the university, which has also assigned 18,000 Master's and 8,000 Doctor's degrees. As of 2011[update], the University of Zagreb is ranked among 500 Best Universities of the world by the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities.
Zagreb is also the seat of two private universities: the Catholic University of Croatia and the Libertas International University; as well as numerous public and private polytehnics, colleges and higher professional schools.
- from the household census
- population census without clergy and nobility
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Rotterdam, Netherlands (1953)
| World Gymnaestrada host city
Stuttgart, West Germany (1961)
Kobe, Japan (1985)
| Universiade host city
Duisburg, West Germany (1989)