Things you definitely didn’t know about Zagreb

Wherever you’re going for your STAYcation, no doubt you’ll explore facts and trivia of the location you’re heading. 

We are proud to be one of the most comprehensive platforms about Croatia and all the information you need when coming to Europe’s most beautiful and diverse country. 

Dolac market, Zagreb, photo by j.duval, photo credit by TB of Zagreb
Dolac market, Zagreb, photo by j.duval, photo credit by TB of Zagreb

 In our section about Zagreb, you’ll find the necessary things to know upon your arrival, upcoming events, and various recommendations. And while you can find so much helpful info for spending your time in the Croatian metropolis, it’s not a bad thing to learn something about Zagreb that come under the umbrella of “fun trivia “and are mainly unknown to the majority of locals over here, so…why not impress them?

Zagreb-funicular, Croatia
Zagreb-funicular, Croatia

Here are 12 things you DEFINITELY didn’t know about Zagreb!

  1. The Zagreb funicular is the shortest cable railway in the world for public transport. It is only 66 meters long, the ride takes just over a minute, and it goes to Upper town from Tomićeva street.
    The statue of Ban Jelačić at main square in Zagreb, photo by Matko M. Švarc
    The statue of Ban Jelačić at main square in Zagreb, photo by Matko M. Švarc
  2. Zagreb’s most visited tourist attraction is its central city square, the famous Ban Jelačić square since it’s inevitable not to cross over it at least once. The second most visited attraction is the beautiful Mirogoj cemetery.
    Mirogoj cemetery, Zagreb, photo by J. Duval, photo credit by TB of Zagreb
    Mirogoj cemetery, Zagreb, photo by J. Duval, photo credit by TB of Zagreb

THE OLDEST HOTEL IN ZAGREB 

3. The oldest hotel in Zagreb dates back to the 19th century, or more precisely, in 1827. The Jagerhorn hotel is located in the most stunning center of Zagreb, between Upper town and Ilica street but still hidden from traffic and noise. Plus, it has been completely redecorated recently.

Photo by M. Švarc, National Theatre in Zagreb
Photo by M. Švarc, National Theatre in Zagreb

FROM CASINO INTO THE ZAGREB’S CATHEDRAL 

4. Three large gilded chandeliers that have been in the Zagreb Cathedral since 2001 decorated the ‘Gold Coast’ casino in Las Vegas. It was a donation, and since it was free, nobody saw any problem installing the chandeliers in question in one of the most important monuments of Croatian sacred cultural heritage.

          More info on this unusual fact here!

Zagreb cathedral, photo by Matko M. Švarc
Zagreb cathedral, photo by Matko M. Švarc

LET’S MEET UNDER THE CLOCK

5. Locals in Zagreb like to meet up below the clock on the main, Jelačić square. Simply, you just arrange the time and say- See ya under the clock, and everyone knows what clock they’re talking about, although there are several identical clocks scattered around town, they are all repaired and maintained by the same family of watchmakers, being in the business for 6 generations. The first clocks were imported from Vienna, and later they were produced in Croatia to look like the original Austrian clocks.

Ban Jelačić Square, Zagreb, Croati9a, Boytronic Photography
Ban Jelačić Square, Zagreb, Croati9a, Boytronic Photography

6. The first honorary citizen of Zagreb became the Austrian politician Alexander von Bach in 1853. Among other recipients of this title in history was the ban Khuen Hedervary(not quite loved among Croatians, which makes this even more peculiar) , the Serbian linguist Vuk Stefanović-Karadžić, and the UN Secretary-General Perez de Quellar. Women waited quite a long time to join the club of honorary citizens of Zagreb, over 120 years! The first woman to receive this title in 1980 was the anti-fascist politician Anka Berus.To this day, only three other women are honorary citizens of Zagreb: Mother Teresa, Margaret Thatcher, and Janica Kostelic. We are hoping to see more women on this list in the near future.

(maybe the author of this article 🙂

The square of Ban Jelačić, Zagreb, Croatia, photo by Croatian Attractions
The square of Ban Jelačić, Zagreb, Croatia, photo by Croatian Attractions

 Will you show me the way to Snail Street?

7. Jurišićeva Street was called Puževa Street, or translated to English – Snail street!

 A long, long time ago, the center of Zagreb didn’t look as near as it looks today. Jurišićeva street, which is, in a way, an extension of Jelačić square, resembled a meadow. It had a stream, by the name of Medveščak, flowing through and several fields around.  Farmers working nearby found snails (which were there in abundance) as an excellent treat since they were highly nutritious (hence, more energy to work) as well as free of charge! Once a poor man’s snack is today’s delicacy only for those who don’t mind spending a bit more on lunch…

The name of Snail street stayed until 1878, and future generations somehow forgot its “slimy “history. 

Fun fact: there is still a Snail street in Zagreb, only on another location, to be more precise, in Kajzerica neighborhood in New Zagreb!

Zagreb cathedral, photo by Matko M. Švarc
Zagreb cathedral, photo by Matko M. Švarc

Being taller 

8. The tallest building in Zagreb is The cathedral, and its height is 105 meters.

Speaking of heights, the top five tallest Croatian buildings are all located in Zagreb, and in addition to the cathedral, these are 

Strojarska Business Center (96 m),

Euro Tower (96 m)

Zagreb Tower (95 m)

and Cibona Tower (92 m).

However, if we look at the tallest building per se, with no inhabitants possible inside, the tallest building in Croatia is the chimney of the Plomin Thermal Power Plant (340 m).

The Museum of Illusions, Zagreb, Croatia, photo credit by Petar Santini
The Museum of Illusions, Zagreb, Croatia, photo credit by Petar Santini

Zagreb has the most museums per capita

9. Of all the cities in the world, Zagreb has the most museums per capita!

 Among the usual historical ones, Zagreb also has some original museums to visit, such as Museum of Broken RelationshipsMuseum of Illusions, or Museum of Hangovers!

Lotrščak Tower, Upper town Zagreb, Croatia, photo by M. Mihaljević, photo credit by TB of Zagreb
Lotrščak Tower, Upper town Zagreb, Croatia, photo by M. Mihaljević, photo credit by TB of Zagreb

 Who shoots it at noon?

10. The Grič cannon, one of the most recognizable symbols of Zagreb, marks noon since 1877. Everyone who visits Zagreb gets shocked or impressed at noon if they are near the city center since the cannon is loud. Additional fun fact: the Grič cannon was on the ship of the famous British Admiral Horatio Nelson.

Zagreb-tram2.jpg

The first Tram 

11. The tram started running in Zagreb in 1891. Of course, it was pulled by horses. The horse-pulling tram didn’t last long since the first electric tram was introduced in 1905.

The main train station in Zagreb, Croatia, photo by J. Duval, photo credit by TB of Zagreb
The main train station in Zagreb, Croatia, photo by J. Duval, photo credit by TB of Zagreb

 

12. The heaviest flood that ever hit Zagreb occurred on the night of October 24th to 25th, 1964.

Zagreb, that’s how I love you (Zagreb tak imam te rad) 

Ana & Andreja

Meštrović pavillion, Zafreb, Croatia, photo by Matko M.Švarc
Meštrović pavillion, Zagreb, Croatia, photo by Matko M.Švarc

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