Things to do in Plešivica

Southwestern of Zagreb stands the hill Plešivica, a southeastern branch of Žumberak Hills, the name of which is immediately associated with good wines. Despite being the smallest wine region in Croatia, the southern slopes of Plešivica are one of our established and most successful vineyards with a grapevine cultivating tradition that is not measured in centuries, but in millennia. This picturesque area is not only notable for its wines–wine roads can be combined with hiking and biking trails, and the Cheese road of the Zagreb region also crosses this area. On the hummocks of Plešivica, you will often see the northern goshawk soaring through the skies. They have been bred for hunting purposes in the Middle Ages, and the town of Jastrebarsko on the foothills of Plešivica was named after them (“jastreb” is Croatian for goshawk). The place with its long history has been a natural central point of this area for centuries, along with being the starting point for exploring the surrounding area. 

When in the center of Jastrebarsko, also popularly referred to as Jaska, start your tour from the Town Museum and Jastrebarsko Gallery. Here, you can also find the informative center of the local tourist board, shall you need any help with getting around. Make a pit-stop next to the Erdődy Castle, the oldest estate in the town, and try to envision how noble families used to live. The Castle is situated in the dazzling park, a cultural heritage arboretum, where it awaits a long overdue renovation. Now forlorn, the medieval Oršić Castle used to witness the glorious history. It is situated on the top of the hill in Slavetić, and you can only observe it from the outside. The Parish Church of St. Nicholas, the patron saint of the town, was first mentioned in 1257. The Church got its baroque facade in the 18th century, and it has looked the same ever since. Among other valuable sacral objects, there areThe Chapel of Our Lady of the Snows in Volavje and the Church of St. Peter in the village of Petrovina, the oldest medieval preserved construction unit in the Jastrebarsko area.

The Plešivica Wine Road leads from the city to the hills. The Road has around thirty wineries, some of which are at the top of thr Wine Map of Croatia. The first association with the vineyards of Plešivica is Blauer Portugieser, a red wine that is drank while still a young wine, and after grapevine harvesting, it is the first to reach the market. Well-known international sorts such as Riesling, Pinot noir, Sauvignon blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot gris thrive on the Plešivica Hill. However, the trademark and the glory of the area are the first-rate sparkling wines, and that is the reason why Plešivica is sometimes dubbed “Croatian Champagne”. Where there is wine, there will be barrels, and the traditional cooperage craft is still alive in Jaska. The Golub family have displayed their cooperage collection on the ground floor of the old house. Wine requires food pairing, and the autochthonous local delicacy is Plešivica copanjek–a savoury delicacy made with fresh cow cheese and leafy greens.  Along the Wine Road, many wineries offer food together with wine tasting. Some of the restaurants that nurture the tradition of homemade cuisine are Ivančić and Karlo, both with a magnificent view of vineyard amphitheaters. The place where the tradition of Plešivica and creative, signature haute cuisine meet is the newly opened restaurant that is a part of the Korak Winery.

Calories are best spent hiking or biking to Plešivica, at whose top at an altitude of 778 meters a viewpoint tower was erected. The clean and not particularly challenging trail leads from the excursion site Klet Poljanice to the Čerga, the peak of Plešivica. Nine kilometers from Jaska, you can find the peaceful rural area of Sveta Jana that is ideal for cycling, and for getting to know the local heritage by visiting the Ethno collection of the Sveta Jana area and the Miller's house. The way from Jastrebarsko to Ozalj will take you to Krašić , the main pilgrimage destination, so called Dolina kardinala (Valley of the Cardinal). On the former parish court, where he spent the last three years of his life, you can find the decorated memorial room honoring the Blessed Alojzije Stepinac, who was born in Krašić.

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