Three Romantic Days in Zagreb and Surroundings
Gingerbread heart is the most popular souvenir in Zagreb, while its slogan is “a city with a million hearts”. This sounds promising enough, but wait until you add other ingredients like Central European charm, lots of green areas and hidden romantic spots, rich history, culture, thriving restaurant scene, laid-back vibes and sun-soaked squares and streets teeming with life… Simply, Zagreb is an ideal destination for a longer date, full of excitement from the morning until the evening. If you already are in love, it doesn’t matter – in your heart you will surely find a place for Zagreb, too. Here are some guidelines to help you enjoy Zagreb as a couple.
In the multitude of cafés on the terraces and in the courtyards of the Lower Town, find one that’s just for you and start the day with a relaxed coffee session. Be sure to take a walk along the system of elegant parks and squares known as the Green Horseshoe, taking you to the Botanical Garden. When you enter this lush oasis, it will feel like you’re in an entirely different world. Take the quiet Dežman Passage and head towards Dubravkin put and Tuškanac park-forest, the perfect place for a pleasant stroll and a break from the city noise. Go to the Upper Town and don’t look at the time, allow yourself to get lost in these romantic old streets and just follow your feet. Afterwards, visit the unique Museum of Broken Relationships with no fear – it will not put your love to a test, but it will keep you entertained. On Strossmayer Promenade soak in the unforgettable view of the city, and you can also make your contribution to the abundance of love padlocks displayed on the fence. And for the grand finale, treat yourselves to an intimate dinner in one of Zagreb’s fine restaurants, starting with a glass of sparkling wine from Plešivica.
Pristine nature around you, the only sound is birds singing, and you are sitting on the grass and having a great time in one of the oldest public parks in Europe… But before you go to Maksimir, take a tour of Dolac, Zagreb’s central food market and “the belly of the city”, as they call it. Get your share of local ingredients for a proper picnic. Maksimir is a great work of landscape architecture so be sure to take a walk first, and breathe in some fresh air before you find your perfect spot. This huge park is also home of the Zagreb Zoo, one of the most popular city attractions, which celebrated its 95th anniversary recently. After the relaxing excursion, come back to the Lower Town and satisfy your sweet tooth in the Museum of Chocolate. Before going out for the night, revel in the sunset and the breath-taking view from Zagreb 360° observation deck.
It is time to explore the natural beauty of Zagreb’s surroundings. It takes around 40 minutes from the city centre to reach the gorgeous landscape of Žumberak – Samoborsko gorje Nature Park. Your destination is the canyon of Slapnica, a mountain stream that created several special waterfalls and cascades on its way through a ten-kilometre valley. You will be amazed by Vranjak and Brisalo waterfalls, and don’t miss the old-fashioned Dragan’s Mill, the only permanently inhabited house in the valley, and the manor of the Medven noble family, a preserved rural estate from the 19th century. If you are up for some light exercise, you can do the tour of the Slapnica valley on bikes. On your way back, make a stop on Plešivica wine road, in the hills above the town of Jastrebarsko, and spend the evening tasting wines and homemade food on the terrace of one of the boutique wineries with a view stretching over the picturesque vineyards.