Friday, 5 September 2014

Zig Zagging Across Zagreb

Walking the two blocks from our drop off point to our hostel in the heat only a city can hold in, Zagreb reminded me of somewhere. Not anywhere I'd been in the last week, tho', gone were the stunning blues of the Adriatic at every turn. Here in Zagreb was a city that showed it's past with both Habsburg and communist style buildings. Zagreb was not like anywhere else I'd visited in Croatia, in fact the place it reminded me of most was Budapest, tho' on a much smaller scale. It even had trams in the streets and a funicular, here you really felt like you were in Eastern Europe.



I was slightly taken aback by this, and to begin with wasn't sure I really liked Zagreb, because it wasn't the Croatia I'd become accustomed to. It was as we did our orientation around the city that I realised it was as beautiful as I'd heard and slowly but surely fell in love with it, just like I had the rest of the country.

Our hostel was conveniently located right by the funicular, and whilst Nick made us walk the stairs- it wasn't like we'd been sat on a bus since 9am or anything, and could use the exercise- later in the day some of us decided to ride the world's quickest funicular ride. With just an afternoon to spend exploring Zagreb, we took to the city ready to discover all the sights. I could easily have spent a weekend exploring this place.

St Mark's Church, Zagreb
At the top of the funicular you can look over the rooftops of Zagreb, where you can see the juxtaposition of Habsburg buildings vs. the communist style ones. From there we walked up towards St. Mark's Church, probably one of the most famous icons of Croatia with it's seriously beautiful tiled roof. As you get closer and closer the fairytale style roof becomes more and more impressive. The roof's tiles are all in the colour's of Croatia, with the Croatian Coat of Arms on the left and the emblem of Zagreb on the right. We didn't go inside the church, partly for lack of time, and partly because when you've been in one church...

Important to me, as an English girl, we passed a statue of St. George slaying the... erm, salamander?! This statue has only been in this location since 1994, and was previously in Austria before it was given as a gift to Mr. Mazuranic. St. George is important in Eastern Europe as he was a soldier in the Guard of Emperor Diocletian (remember him?). The short version of the tale is that George was out converting folk to Christianity in an area that did not want to be converted, but they were being terrorised by a dragon. George told them he would slay the dragon if they all converted and thus became a saint!

St. George and his, erm, Salamander


From here we wandered across to the area where the Market is held (the Zagreb hearts at the top of this post are from the Market Place) unfortunately due to the day and time we were in Zagreb we missed this market. The market is over 80 years old and is a traditional farmer's market with all sorts of fruit, vegetables, cheeses (and even meats and other things in the undercover section). If you've been tell me what sorts of delights you got there?

Our next stop was the Cathedral of Zagreb. The tallest building in the country, and a dedication to the Assumption of Mary, St. Stephen & St. Ladislaus. The cathedral is typically Gothic and its spires can be seen from many locations around Zagreb. Unfortunately for the sake of my photo's the cathedral was under restoration when we visited. Suffice to say this stunning cathedral is going to look even more gorgeous once the work is finished.



After our orientation, we walked back towards the funicular which we this time took up to the one place in Zagreb I had been dying to go to more than anywhere; The Museum of Broken Relationships...













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8 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Isn't it just? It's *kind of* similar to the castle in Budapest, Hungary. In that they're porcelain and the rain essentially cleans them and keeps them shiny.

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  2. Have always wanted to visit Zagreb! And your post just makes me want to go more :) Hopefully in the next few years!

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    Replies
    1. Zagreb is awesome you should definitely go :)

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  3. Interesting architecture. I've never seen a church with a tiled roof like St Mark's Church. Is this style common in Croatia?

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    1. No, I don't think so, I think it's just this church :) at least I haven't heard of any other churches like it in Croatia.... the castle in Budapest's roof is similar but not the same.

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  4. The cathedral is really impressive. The roof on St. Mark's is also really cool! Thank you so much for sharing and linking up with #WeekendWanderlust!

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  5. They really did an amazing job on the roof tiles of St. Mark's Cathedral. They are so colorful and the medieval coat of arms gives it that added touch. I've never been to Zagreb but I do own a painting that my in-laws purchased there many years ago. Thanks for linking up to #WeekendWanderlust.

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