This article is about the Croatian capital city. For other uses, see Zagreb (disambiguation).
City of Zagreb


Coat of arms

City of Zagreb (light orange)
within Croatia (light yellow)
Coordinates: 45°49′N 15°59′E / 45.817°N 15.983°ECoordinates: 45°49′N 15°59′E / 45.817°N 15.983°E
Country Croatia
County City of Zagreb
Andautonia 1st century
RC diocese 1094
Free royal city 1242
Unified 1850
Subdivisions 17 districts
70 settlements
  Type Mayor-Council
  Mayor Milan Bandić
  City Council
  City 641 km2 (247 sq mi)
  Urban 1,621.22 km2 (625.96 sq mi)
  Metro 3,719 km2 (1,436 sq mi)
Elevation[2] 158 m (518 ft)
Highest elevation 1,035 m (3,396 ft)
Lowest elevation 122 m (400 ft)
Population (2013)[3][4]
  City 795,505
  Density 1,200/km2 (3,200/sq mi)
  Urban density 4,200/km2 (11,000/sq mi)
  Metro 1,110,517
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code HR-10000, HR-10020, HR-10040, HR-10090, HR-10110
Area code +385 1
Vehicle registration ZG

Zagreb (Croatian pronunciation: [zǎːɡreb];[5] names in other languages) is the capital and the largest city of the Republic 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. In the last official census of 2011 the population of the City of Zagreb was 792,875.[6] The wider Zagreb metropolitan area includes the City of Zagreb and the separate Zagreb County bringing the total metropolitan area population up to 1,110,517. It is the only metropolitan area in Croatia with a population of over one million.

Zagreb is a city with a rich history dating from the Roman times to the present day. The oldest settlement in the urban area of the city is Andautonia, a Roman settlement in the place of today's Ščitarjevo. The name "Zagreb" is mentioned for the first time in 1094 at the founding of the Zagreb diocese of Kaptol, and Zagreb became a free royal town in 1242, whereas the origin of the name still remains a mystery in spite of several theories. In 1851 Zagreb had its first mayor, Janko Kamauf, and in 1945 it was made the capital of Croatia when the demographic boom and the urban sprawl made the city as it is known today.

Zagreb has a special status in the Republic of 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 being at 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 Sljeme 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 Western 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 oldest settlement in the urban area of Zagreb was a Roman town of Andautonia, now Šćitarjevo, which dates back to the 1st century AD.[7] The first recorded appearance of the name Zagreb is dated to 1094, at which time the city existed as two different city centers: the smaller, eastern Kaptol, inhabited mainly by clergy and housing Zagreb Cathedral, and the larger, western Gradec, inhabited mainly by farmers and merchants. Gradec and Zagreb 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.[8] 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.[9]


St. Mark's Church, 13th century

The name Zagreb appears to have been first recorded in 1134 in a document relating to the establishment of the Zagreb bishopric around 1094, although the origins of the name Zagreb are less clear. The Croatian word "zagrabiti" translates approximately to "to scoop", which forms the basis of some legends. One Croat legend says that a Croat ban (viceroy) was leading his thirsty soldiers across a deserted region. He drove his sabre into the ground in frustration and water poured out, so he ordered his soldiers to dig for water. The idea of digging or unearthing is supported by scientists who suggest that the settlement was established beyond a water-filled hole or graba and that the name derives from this.[10]

According to another old legend, a city ruler was thirsty and ordered a girl named Manda to take water from Lake Manduševac (nowadays a fountain in Ban Jelačić Square), using the sentence: "Zagrabi, Mando!" which means, Scoop it up, Manda!.[11]

Some sources suggest that the name derives from the term 'za breg' or 'beyond the hill'. The hill may well have been the river bank of the River Sava (the modern Croatian word "breg" or "brijeg", meaning "hill", originally meant "river bank"), which is believed to have previously flowed closer to the city centre. Another possible origin is the term "za grabom", meaning "behind the moat", as the city was heavily fortified since its beginnings.[12][13]

During Austria-Hungary, Zagreb was more commonly known outside Croatia by its Austrian German exonym "Agram".[14] In today's German though, "Zagreb" prevails.

Early Zagreb

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 centuries

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 the capital of Croatia and Slavonia. In 1557, the Croatian Parliament, 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.[15]

19th to early 20th century

Political history is missing (March 2013)

Burza square in 1930s

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.[16]

The first railway line to connect Zagreb with Zidani Most and Sisak was opened in 1862 and in 1863 Zagreb received a gasworks. The Zagreb waterworks was opened in 1878.

Zagreb in the Kingdom of Croatia-Slavonia, bilingual cancelled in 1900
Sculpture representing the Triune Kingdom

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.

Since 1 January 1877, the Grič cannon is fired daily from the Lotrščak Tower on Grič to mark midday.

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 out of Zagreb, and in 1947 the Zagreb Fair was opened.[17]

During World War II, Zagreb became the capital of the Independent State of Croatia, which was backed by the Nazi Germany and Italians. The city was liberated by the partisans at the end of the war.

Modern Zagreb

View of the eastern part of Lenuzzi's horseshoe

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).[18] 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.[19]

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.[20]

Area and population development

Gornji grad
Year Area
(within city limits at that time)
(within today's city limits)
1368 2,810[nb 1]
1742 5,600[nb 1]
1805 7,706[nb 2]
1850 16,036
1857 16,657 48,266
1869 19,857 54,761
1880 30,830 67,188
1890 3.33 40,268 82,848
1900 64.37 61,002 111,565
1910 64.37 79,038 136,351
1921 64.37 108,674 167,765
1931 64.37 185,581 258,024
1948 74.99 279,623 356,529
1953 235.74 350,829 393,919
1961 495.60 430,802 478,076
1971 497.95 602,205 629,896
1981 1,261.54 768,700 723,065
1991 1,715.55 933,914 777,826
2001 641.36 779,145 779,145
2011 641.36 792,875 792,875
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).[21]


The climate of Zagreb is classified as an oceanic climate (Cfb in Köppen climate classification system), near the boundary of the humid continental climate. Zagreb has four separate seasons. Summers are warm, and winters are cold, without a discernible dry season. The average temperature in winter is −0.5 °C (31.1 °F) and the average temperature in summer is 22.0 °C (71.6 °F). Temperatures rise above 30 °C (86 °F) on an average 17 days each summer.[22]

Snowfall is common in the winter months, from December to March, and rain and fog are common in autumn (October to December).[23] Highest recorded temperature ever was 40.4 °C (104.7 °F) in July 1950, and lowest was −27.3 °C (−17.1 °F) in February 1956.[22]

Climate data for Zagreb
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 19.4
Average high °C (°F) 3.1
Daily mean °C (°F) 0.0
Average low °C (°F) −4.0
Record low °C (°F) −24.3
Average precipitation mm (inches) 48.6
Avg. rainy days 10.8 10.0 11.2 12.7 13.2 13.6 10.9 10.4 9.8 10.2 12.2 12.1 137.1
Avg. snowy days 6 5 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 5 23
Mean monthly sunshine hours 58.8 93.7 140.4 177.7 233.9 244.8 282.4 260.0 186.4 131.2 64.8 45.5 1,919.6
Percent possible sunshine 21 32 38 43 51 52 59 58 50 38 23 17 40
Source #1: World Meteorological Organisation (UN)[24]
Source #2: Croatian Meteorological and Hydrological Service[22]


Eurotower in Zagreb, home of the Zagreb Stock Exchange
Rockets Zagreb

Zagreb is by far the largest city in Croatia in terms of area and population. The official 2011 census counted 792,324 residents,[25][26] 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 1.2 million inhabitants,[27] as it includes the Zagreb County.[28] In 1997, the City of Zagreb itself was given special County status, separating it from Zagreb County,[29] although it remains the administrative center 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.[30]

City districts

The city districts (Croatian: gradska četvrt) are:[4][31]

No. District Area (km²) Population
density (2001)
1. Donji Grad 3.01 37,123 45,108 14,956.2
2. Gornji Grad – Medveščak 10.12 31,279 36,384 3,593.5
3. Trnje 7.37 42,126 45,267 6,146.2
4. Maksimir 14.35 49,448 49,750 3,467.1
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
10. Črnomerec 24.33 39,040 38,762 1,593.4
11. Gornja Dubrava 40.28 62,221 61,388 1,524.1
12. Donja Dubrava 10.82 36,461 35,944 3,321.1
13. Stenjevec 12.18 51,849 41,257 3,387.3
14. Podsused – Vrapče 36.05 45,771 42,360 1,175.1
15. Podsljeme 60.11 19,249 17,744 295.2
16. Sesvete 165.26 70,633 59,212 358.3
17. Brezovica 127.45 12,040 10,884 85.4
TOTAL 641.43 792,875 779,145 1,214.9


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:[3]

  • 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


Most important branches of industry are: production of electric machines and devices, chemical, pharmaceutical, textile, food and drink processing. Zagreb is an international trade and business centre, and an essential transport hub placed at the crossroads of Central Europe, the Mediterannean and the Balkans.[32] 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.[33]

As of January 2013, the average monthly net salary in Zagreb was 6,699 kuna, about 900 (Croatian average is 5,399 kuna, about €725).[34][35] At the end of 2012, the average unemployment rate in Zagreb was around 9.5%.[36] 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.

Companies in Zagreb create 52% of total turnover and 60% of total profit of Croatia in 2006 as well as 35% of Croatian export and 57% of Croatian import.[37][38]


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 council 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 the recently completed Sky Office Tower. In Novi Zagreb, the neighbourhoods of Blato and Lanište expanded significantly, including the Zagreb Arena and the adjoining business centre.[39]

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.[40]

Panoramic view of Sava
Panoramic view of southern Zagreb
View of Upper Town towards east
View of Zagrabe Main Station area from Esplanade Hotel, Zagreb
View from astronomic observatory in Upper town

Metropolitan administration

Districts of Zagreb

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 city assembly as the representative body and mayor and the city government as the executive body. The members of the city assembly are elected at direct elections. Prior to 2009, the mayor was elected by the city assembly. It was changed to direct election in 2009. They elect the mayor and members of the city government by majority vote. The city government has 11 members elected on mayor’s proposal by the city assembly by majority vote. The mayor is the head of city government and has two deputies. The city administrative bodies are composed of 12 city offices, 3 city bureaus and 3 city services. They are responsible to the mayor and the city government. Local government is organized in 17 city districts represented by City District Councils. Residents of districts elect members of councils.[41]

City government

The current mayor of Zagreb is Milan Bandić.

The city assembly is composed of 51 representatives. The current structure of the city assembly by party lines is as follows:[42]



Main article: Transport in Zagreb


Further information: Highways in Croatia

Zagreb is the hub of five major Croatian highways. Until a few years ago, all Croatian highways either started or ended in Zagreb.

The highway A6 was upgraded in October 2008 and leads from Zagreb to Rijeka, crossing 146.5 kilometers (91.0 mi) 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.[43] 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 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.[44] It connects Zagreb and the frequently congested Macelj border crossing, forming a near-continuous motorway-level link between Zagreb and Western Europe.[45] 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 the least 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.[46] 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.[47] 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.[47][48]


Homeland bridge

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.

See also: Zagreb bypass


Zagreb has seven road traffic bridges across the river Sava, and they all span both the river and the levees, making them all by and large longer than 200 m (660 ft). In downstream order, these are:

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.[49]
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

ZET bus on route 106
ZET TMK 2200 on Line 3
Newest model of the Zagreb city trains system.

Public transportation in the city is organized 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 subsidized by the city council.

The national rail operator Croatian Railways (Hrvatske željeznice, HŽ) runs a network of urban and suburban train lines in the metropolitan Zagreb area, and is a government-owned corporation.

The funicular (uspinjača) in the historic part of the city is a tourist attraction.

Taxis are readily available through a network of around 3000 taxi vehicles,[50] 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.

Tram network

Main article: Trams in Zagreb

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 September 5, 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.[51]

Suburban rail network

Main article: Zagreb Commuter Rail
Zagreb Main Station

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.[52]

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.[53]

Air traffic

Zagreb Airport (IATA: ZAG, ICAO: LDZA), known as 'Pleso Airport' is the main Croatian international airport, a 17 km (11 mi) drive southeast of Zagreb in the suburb of Pleso. The airport is also the main Croatian airbase featuring a fighter squadron, helicopters, as well as military and freight transport aircraft.[54] The airport had slightly less than 2.5 million passengers in 2012, but in September 2013 a new terminal is to be built and the airport will be able to receive more than 5 million passengers after the end of construction.

Zagreb also has a second, smaller airport, Lučko (ICAO: LDZL). It is home to sports airplanes 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.[55]

A third, small grass airfield, Buševec, is located just outside Velika Gorica. It is primarily used for sports purposes.[56]

Cultural sites


Mimara Museum at night
Museum of Arts and Crafts, Zagreb

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 artifacts and monuments, have been gathered over the years from many different sources. These holdings include evidence of Croatian presence in the area.[57] 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.[58]

Croatian Natural History Museum (1 Demetrova Street) holds one of the world's most important collection of Neanderthal remains found at one site.[59] 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.[60][61]

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.[62] 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 Marshal Tito 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.[63]

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.[64]

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.[65] The holdings comprise 3,750 works of art of various techniques and materials, and different cultures and civilizations.

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.[66] From time to time, the museum organizes 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 nineteenfifties till today. The museum is located in the center of Novi Zagreb, opened in 2009. The old location, 2 St. Catherine's Square, is part of the Kulmer Palace in the Gornji Grad.[67]

Other museums and galleries

Exterior of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts building.

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 The Strossmayer Gallery of Old Masters (11 Zrinski Square) offers permanent holdings presenting European paintings from the 14th to 19th centuries,[68] 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 theaters 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.[69][70][71] It is the first private museum in the country.[72]

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.[73][74]


Zagreb has been, and is, hosting some of the most popular mainstream artists, most recently 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 as well as some of world most recognized 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 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 recognized 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.

Performing arts

There are about 20 permanent or seasonal theaters 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 is 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 Bienniale, 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, theater performances and concerts, mostly in the Upper Town, are organized either indoors or outdoors. The stage on Opatovina hosts the Zagreb Histrionic Summer theater 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 November 16 is celebrated every year with special festivities, especially on the Jarun lake near the southwestern part of the city.


Further information: List of high schools in Zagreb

There are 136 primary schools and 100 secondary schools including 30 gymnasia.[75][76] There are 5 public higher education institution and 9 private professional higher education schools.[77]


Main article: University of Zagreb

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 28 faculties, three art academies, the Teacher Academy and the Croatian Studies Center. 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. [78]

As of 2011, University of Zagreb is ranked among 500 Best Universities of the world by the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities.

Religious organisations

Zagreb Islamic centre and mosque

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.[79] 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. A mosque used to be located in the Meštrović Pavilion during World War II [80] at the Žrtava Fašizma Square, but it was relocated to the neighborhood 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 neighborhood of Jarun whereas Jehovah's Witnesses have their headquarters in Central Zagreb.[81] In total there are around 40 non-Catholic religious organizations and denominations in Zagreb with their headquarters and places of worship across the city making it a large and diverse multicultural community.


Further information: Zagreb County, Krapina-Zagorje County and Sisak-Moslavina County

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 Ščitarjevo.

The picturesque former villages on the slopes of Medvednica, Šestine, Gračani and Remete, maintain their rich traditions, including folk costumes, Šestine umbrellas, and gingerbread products.

The Medvednica Mountain (Croatian: Zagrebačka gora), with its highest peak Sljeme (1,035 m), provides a panoramic view of metropolitan Zagreb, the Sava and the Kupa valleys, and the region of Hrvatsko Zagorje. 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 neighboring 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 built in the 13th century, represents a special attraction of Medvednica hill. It overlooks the western part of the city and also has 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. Travel agencies organize guided excursions to the surroundings as well as sightseeing in Zagreb itself.


Jelačić Square

Zagreb is an important tourist center, not only in terms of passengers travelling from Western and Central 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 Marshal Tito 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 of the people don't know what the statue Prizemljeno sunce (The Grounded Sun) is for, so they put graffiti or signatures on it, but it's actually the Sun scaled down, with many planets situated all over Zagreb in relative 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 center 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[82] tourists visited the city, with a 10%[83] increase seen in 2011. In 2012 a total of 675 707 tourists [84] visited the city.

Souvenirs and gastronomy

Zagreb, Dolac Market
Zagreb's signature dessert dish, štrukli

Numerous shops, boutiques, store houses and shopping centers offer a variety of quality clothing. 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 specialities 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).

Recreation and sports

There are numerous sports and recreational centers in Zagreb. 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 minigolf.

Dom Sportova, a sport center in northern Trešnjevka features six halls. The largest two can accommodate 7,358[85] and 3,900 people, respectively. This center is used for basketball, handball, volleyball, hockey, gymnastics, tennis, and many others. It is also used for concerts.

Arena Zagreb was finished in 2008. The 16,500-seat arena[86] hosted the 2009 World Men's Handball Championship. The Dražen Petrović Basketball Hall seats 5,400 people. Alongside the hall is the 94-meter (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 center also has swimming pools, basketball courts, football fields, a gym and fitness center, and a four-lane bowling alley. Outdoor ice skating is a popular winter recreation. There are also several fine restaurants within and near the center.

Maksimir Tennis Center, located in Ravnice east of downtown, consists of two sports blocks. The first comprises a tennis center 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 center 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[87]-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.

International relations

Twin towns — sister cities

Zagreb is twinned with the following towns and cities:[88]

Partner cities

The city has partnership arrangements with:

See also



  1. 1.0 1.1 from the household census
  2. population census without clergy and nobility
  1. Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Kosovo. The latter declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. Kosovo's independence has been recognised by 108 out of 193 United Nations member states.


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External links