Falling in love…with Zagreb.

Okay so they give you a map of the best places in the city to steal a kiss 💋. What does that tell you about this city?

Bernard, gotcha!  I quite like this map, especially when I can catch my hubby off guard.😊

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Romantic Zagreb - best kissing spots in town

We’ve only been in Zagreb now for one week, but already we’ve fallen in love with this city. It was really love at first sight. Within a couple of days we liked what we saw and how we felt here.

Thank-you my friend, for these welcoming flowers.fullsizeoutput_2ad7.jpegZagreb is the capital of Croatia.  It is also the largest city in Croatia. The city’s population is about 800,000 people and the metropolitan area has a population that exceeds a million. On the map below of Croatia you can see the city of Zagreb which is further inland and almost touching the Slovenian border.Related imageThe city has a lower and upper town. The upper town is the historic district. You can access the upper town different ways; taking stairs up from the lower town, going through the stone gate or by using the funicular. We will be referring to the upper and lower town quite often throughout these posts on Zagreb.

Here are a few pics of the Ban Jelačić Square which is the central square of the city,

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Here is a photo of the beautiful St. Mark’s church in the upper town.

fullsizeoutput_2903.jpegAs we were planning our trip to Croatia we didn’t really know too much what to expect of Zagreb. But wow, are we ever pleasantly surprised! Zagreb’s city centre is compact which makes it lovely to stroll around and discover it’s different sites. The city has a relaxed feel to it and its people, well, they are just friggin’ laid back.❤️ It’s actually weird but the city’s “mood” just gets you in that same state of mind. From the moment we entered the city centre we instantly felt its relaxed vibe.  Zagreb just has a nice atmosphere. Can’t quite put our finger on it but maybe it’s because most of the city centre is free of cars, which makes it nice and quiet in the streets. It has a tram system but you actually get surprised when one creeps up behind you..

So the first thing that we noticed right away is that the locals here, love flowers. There are stands everywhere and the locals pick up flowers as they do their daily bread.IMG_6736Their other HUGE passion is coffee. It is so big that we are going to write about it later in another post. So, coffee addicts stay tune! We had read about the cafés being a meeting place for people before coming  but we had never expected it to be so much a part of this city’s culture. Each neighbourhood has multiple indoor/outdoor cafés that provide a setting for people to get together for coffee. Another reason we’re in love with the city. ☕️😊IMG_7079.JPGOh yes, we should mention, if you despise the colours yellow and blue, well, you should probably avoid Zagreb 😊. Many of its buildings have a significant Viennese influence often painted yellow, which was the official colour of the Habsburg ruling family. And guess what, the buses and trams are blue!IMG_6814.JPG

 

fullsizeoutput_2aa9We’ve now been here for a week and we’ve done so much already. What is nice about this place is that many different things around the city can be done for free.

After completing the best kissing places in the city we set out the very next day to find all the planets that are placed here & there throughout the city. You start with the sun. Here is a cheat sheet that will help you along. The sun is the easiest to locate.

Okay great, at least we’ve found the sun…good eyes Bernard!

fullsizeoutput_296d.jpegAll the other ones are not as obvious as they are just little plaques. It was a great way to get us around and exploring the city.

 

Here below is the Cathedral of Zagreb (lower town)

fullsizeoutput_2ad9.jpegYou have different architectural influences in Zagreb but I think we were first struck by the Austro-Hungarian influence. As well the lower town has a significant Viennese influence.

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The city has a botanical garden that is attached to the university and it’s free.🆓

 

If you ever decide to come to Zagreb please, please make sure you are here on a Saturday to visit the Dolac Market. You will be in awe. We were like little kids . We finally have found a huge traditional European market like we yearn to have back home. ALL FRESH and unprepared food! fullsizeoutput_2a86The first thing that catches your eye is the colourful red umbrellas. Hundreds of them!. This is the first level of the market which is outdoors. They are a symbol of this oldest market in Zagreb. What a cheerful way to start your Saturday morning. So beautiful and vibrant. Almost every vendor has one.  Wouldn’t you know these umbrellas have a romantic legend behind their existence. The legend tells that “many-many years ago, people of Zagreb were protecting themselves from the rain, using sadly-looking black umbrellas. One rainy day, a young man and his lady were standing under one of these sad umbrellas and suddenly a young man opened his heart, and confessed his love for this lady. The loving couple kissed, and, at the same second, their boring sad umbrella turned to a bright-red.” 

IMG_6884.JPGUnderneath the umbrellas (see below) you have ” experience ”  checking out the the freshness and prices of the produce! Lets’ follow them! 😊fullsizeoutput_2a78What caught our eye right away was how meticulous everything was arranged. Have a look at these potatoes below, each has been perfectly & individually stacked.fullsizeoutput_2a61

 

The market outdoors is where you have all the fresh produce, nuts, spices, flowers and more and then a covered underground section which is HUGE has all the fresh meats, sausages, pasta, breads, millions of cheese varieties and yes, freshly made warm PASTRIES! 🥮

Of course everyone comes out on  market day, so you never know who you’ll run into.  We figured that’s why some people dress up for the occasion!😊

 

 

We lucked out this week, when we arrived we heard that the city was hosting its annual “Festival of Lights”  to celebrate the start of Spring. The whole upper town was illuminated and we’re sure all the generations were out for it. It was so well done and appreciated. 👏

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Watch this minute u-tube video of this amazing week of lights in Zagreb. We were in awe ! Goggle “festival of lights Zagreb 2019” and you will get to a u-tube video of this year’s festival. 

We ended our first week today, Sunday, with great weather reaching 24 C and of course this meant a picnic with our p’tite nappe champêtre at tow. We had our first picnic in Ribnjak Park and enjoyed a nice relaxing day.

 

“Doviđenja” for now from Zagreb and stay tuned as we explore more of this wonderful city, and we’ll share soon!

 

11 thoughts on “Falling in love…with Zagreb.

    1. C’est ça le plaisir….découvrir avant les autres! Continuez à piquer notre curiosité…on aime ça. On a bien hâte de manger des fruits et légumes frais du marché nous aussi. On compte les dodos sur nos doigts!

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