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Zagreb
—  City  —
City of Zagreb
Grad Zagreb
View of Zagreb Landmarks.

Flag

Coat of arms
Location of Zagreb within Croatia
Coordinates: 45°49′0″N 15°59′0″E / 45.816667°N 15.983333°E / 45.816667; 15.983333
Country Croatia Croatia
County City of Zagreb
RC diocese 1094
Free royal city 1242
Unified 1850
Subdivisions 17 districts
70 settlements
Government
 - Type Mayor-Council
 - Mayor Milan Bandić
 - City Council
Area [1]
 - City 641.29 km2 (247.6 sq mi)
Elevation [2] 158 m (518 ft)
Highest elevation 1,035 m (3,396 ft)
Lowest elevation 122 m (400 ft)
Population (2008 estimate)[3]
 - City 804,200
 Density 1,203.9/km2 (3,118.1/sq mi)
 Urban 1,188,000
 - 2001 census 779,145
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 - Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 10000
Area code 01
License plate ZG
Website zagreb.hr

Zagreb (Croatian pronunciation: [ˈzâːɡrɛb]) is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. Zagreb is the cultural, scientific, economic and governmental center of Croatia.[4] According to the city government, the population of Zagreb in 2008 was 804,200[3] (approximately 1.2 million in the metropolitan area).[5] It is situated between the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain and both northern and southern bank of the Sava river at an elevation of approximately 122 m (400 ft) above sea level.

Its favorable geographic position in the southwestern part of the Pannonian Basin, which extends to the Alpine, Dinaric, Adriatic and Pannonic regions, provides an excellent connection for traffic between Central Europe and the Adriatic Sea.

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.

Contents

Name origin

The Square of Ban Josip Jelačić
King Tomislav Square
Cathedral

The name Zagreb appears to have been recorded in 1094, although the origins of the name Zagreb are less clear. The Croatian word "zagrabiti" translates approximately 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.[6] Some suggests 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, which is believed to have previously flowed closer to the city centre. From here, the words may have been fused into one word and, thus, the name Zagreb was born. According to another legend, a city ruler was thirsty and ordered a girl named Manda to take water from Lake Manduševac (nowadays a fountain), using the sentence: "Zagrabi, Mando!" which means, Scoop it, Manda! [7]. A less probable theory is that the name Zagreb is believed to be related to the Zagros mountains of Iran.[8]

Demographics

View of Zagreb
Zagreb daytime

Zagreb is the largest city in Croatia, and is the only Croatian city whose metropolitan population exceeds one million people. Most people live in the city proper. The official 2001 census counted 779,145[9] residents, although by 2006 that number had grown to 804,900, according to the city government estimates.[3] According to the 2001 census, there are 1,188,841 people in the Zagreb metropolitan area, which includes the smaller cities of Dugo Selo, Samobor, Velika Gorica, Zaprešić and Jastrebarsko. However, non-city-sanctioned 2007 estimates place this number around 1.1 million.[5] The majority of its citizens are Croats making up 92% of the city's population (2001 census). The same census records 60,066 residents belonging to ethnic minorities. Such ethnic minorities comprise: 18,811 Serbs (2.41%), 6,204 Bosniaks (0.80%), 8,030 Muslims by nationality (1.02%), 6,389 Albanians (0.83%), 3,225 Slovenes (0.41%), 3,946 Roma (0.55%), 2,131 Montenegrins (0.27%), 2,315 Macedonians (0.27%), together with other smaller minor ethnic communities.[9]

Climate

Mamutica - One of the biggest buildings by volume in Europe (over 5000 people live in it)

The climate of Zagreb is classified as oceanic (Cfb in Köppen climate classification system), near the boundary of humid continental. Zagreb has four separate seasons. Summers are hot, and winters are cold, without a discernible dry season. The average temperature in winter is 1 °C (34 °F) and the average temperature in summer is 20 °C (68 °F). Particularly, the end of May gets very warm with temperatures rising above 30 °C (86 °F). Snowfall is common in the winter months, from December to March, and rain and fog are common in fall (October to December).[10] Highest recorded temperature ever was 40.4 °C (104.7 °F) in July 1950,[11] and lowest was −27.3 °C (−17 °F) in February 1956[11]

Climate data for Zagreb
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 19.4
(67)
22
(72)
26
(79)
29.4
(85)
33.4
(92)
37.6
(100)
40.4
(105)
39.8
(104)
32.8
(91)
28.3
(83)
25.4
(78)
22.5
(73)
40.4
(105)
Average high °C (°F) 2.8
(37)
5
(41)
11.1
(52)
14.4
(58)
20
(68)
23.3
(74)
25.6
(78)
25
(77)
21.7
(71)
15
(59)
8.3
(47)
3.3
(38)
14.6
(58.3)
Average low °C (°F) -3.9
(25)
-2.8
(27)
1.1
(34)
5
(41)
8.9
(48)
12.8
(55)
14.4
(58)
13.9
(57)
10.6
(51)
6.1
(43)
1.7
(35)
-1.7
(29)
5.5
(41.9)
Record low °C (°F) -24.3
(-12)
-27.3
(-17)
-18.3
(-1)
-4.4
(24)
-1.8
(29)
2.5
(37)
5.4
(42)
3.7
(39)
-0.6
(31)
-5.6
(22)
-13.5
(8)
-19.8
(-4)
-27.3
(-17)
Precipitation mm (inches) 53.3
(2.1)
48.3
(1.9)
55.9
(2.2)
68.6
(2.7)
83.8
(3.3)
94
(3.7)
78.7
(3.1)
78.7
(3.1)
78.7
(3.1)
94
(3.7)
86.4
(3.4)
66
(2.6)
883.9
(34.8)
Avg. precipitation days 7 6 9 13 13 13 11 10 10 10 11 9 122
Source: [10] 2006-07-02
Source #2: [11] 2008-12-27

History

Burza square in 1930s

Zagreb is a city with a rich history, with Roman settlements such as Andautonia existing as early as 1st century AD.[12] The first recorded appearance of the name Zagreb is dated in 1094, at which time the city existed as two different city cores: smaller, eastern Kaptol, inhabited mainly by clergy and housing the Zagreb Cathedral, and larger, western Gradec, inhabited by other people, mainly farmers and merchants. Gradec and Zagreb were united in 1851 by ban Josip Jelačić, who was credited by naming the main city square, Ban Jelačić Square in his honour. During the former Yugoslavia, Zagreb remained an important economic node in the country, and was the second largest city. After the dissolution of Yugoslavia, Zagreb became the capital of Croatia.

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Early Zagreb

The history of Zagreb dates as far back as 1094 when the Hungarian King Ladislaus founded a diocese. Alongside the bishop's see the canonical settlement Kaptol developed north of the Cathedral, as did the fortified settlement Gradec on the neighboring hill. 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 Tatar 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. According to legend, Bela left Gradec a cannon, under the condition that it be fired every day so that it did not rust. Since 1 January 1877 the cannon is fired from the Lotrščak Tower on Grič to mark midday.

Gradec - A old fortified town (part of the Upper Town)

Fighting ensued between the Zagreb diocese and the free sovereign town of Gradec for land and mills, sometimes also for political reasons. The term Zagreb was used for these two separate boroughs in the 16th century. Zagreb was then seen as the political center and the capital of Croatia and Slavonia. In 1850 the town was united under its first mayor - Janko Kamauf.[13]

17th and 18th century

It was not until the 17th century and Nikola Frankopan that Zagreb was chosen as the seat of the Croatian viceroys in 1621. 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 a university where philosophy, theology and law were taught.

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.[14]

19th to early 20th century

In the 19th century Zagreb was the center of the Croatian National Revival and saw the erection of important cultural and historic institutions.

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 and the first horse-drawn tramcar was used in 1891. The construction of the railway lines enabled the old suburbs to merge gradually into Donji Grad, characterized 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, theaters and cinemas. An electric power plant was erected in 1907 and development flourished 1880–1914 after the earthquake in Zagreb when the town received the characteristic layout it has today.

The first half of the 20th century saw a large expansion of Zagreb. Before the World War I, the city expanded and neighborhoods like Stara Peščenica in the east and Črnomerec in the west were created. After the war, working-class quarters emerged between the railway and the Sava, whereas the construction of residential quarters on the hills of the southern slopes of Medvednica was completed between the two World Wars.

In the 1920s the population of Zagreb went up by 70 percent — the largest demographic boom in the history of Zagreb. In 1926 the first radio station in the region began broadcasting out of Zagreb, and in 1947 the Zagreb Fair was opened.[15]

Modern Zagreb

Modern Zagreb
Ban Jelačić square
View of Zagreb

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).[16] 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 southeastern part of the city represents an extension of the industrial zones on the eastern outskirts of the city, between Sava and the Prigorje region.

In 1987 Zagreb hosted the Summer Universiade.[17]

In 1991, it became the capital of the country following secession from Second Yugoslavia. 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 that killed seven civilians.

Urbanized area connects Zagreb with the following surrounding districts: Sesvete, Zaprešić, Samobor, Dugo Selo and Velika Gorica; Sesvete was the first and the closest one to become a part of the agglomeration and is in fact already administratively included in the City of Zagreb.[citation needed]

Zrinjevac Park
Areal view of the Lower Town
Radićeva Street
King Tomislav Square
Bogović Street
Ilica Street - Main shopping street
Zagrebs Mosque
Zagreb Panorama from The Upper Town

Area and population development

Year Area
(km²)
Population
(inside city limits at that time)
Population
(inside today's city limits)
Notes
1368 2,810 from the household census
1742 5,600 from the household census
1805 7,706 population census without clergy and nobility
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
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).[18]

Economy

Most important branches of industry are: production of electric machines and devices, chemical, pharmaceutical, textile, food and drink processing. Zagreb is international trade and business center, and the transport crossroad of Central and East Europe.[19]

The city of Zagreb has the highest nominal gross domestic product per capita in Croatia ($ 19,132 in 2005, compared to the Croatian average of $ 10,431).[20] In 2004, the GDP in purchasing power parity was $ 28,261 ( 19,067).[21]

As of July 2008, the average monthly net salary in Zagreb was 6,228 kuna, about $1,356 (Croatian average is 5,234 kuna, about $1,140).[22] In 2006 the average unemployment rate in Zagreb was around 8.6%.[1]

34% of companies in Croatia have headquarters in Zagreb, and 38.4% of 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.[21][23]

Cityscape

Petar Preradović Square

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).

There have been many recent constructions in Zagreb, such as the Almeria Tower, Eurotower, HOTO Tower and Zagrebtower. Several new skyscrapers, such as Center Črnomerec, Sky Office Tower and the Tower 123 are planned for construction in 2008, along with proposed business districts in Kajzerica and Buzin, both in Novi Zagreb. There has recently been an announcement of high-rise development along the Jadranska Avenue, near Blato and Lanište, where the Zagreb Arena is being built.[24]

Due to a long-standing restriction that forbade construction of 10-story or higher buildings most of Zagreb's skyscrapers date from 70s and 80s 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 skyscrapers in Lanište or Kajzerica.[25]

Metropolitan administration

According to the Constitution, the city of Zagreb, as the capital of Croatia, has special status. As such, Zagreb performs self-governing public affairs of both city and county. 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.[26]

City districts

The city districts (Croatian: gradska četvrt) are:[27]

Croatia

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No. District Area (km²) Population (2001) Population density
1. Donji Grad 3.01 45,108 14,956.2
2. Gornji Grad - Medveščak 10.12 36,384 3,593.5
3. Trnje 7.37 45,267 6,146.2
4. Maksimir 14.35 49,750 3,467.1
5. Peščenica - Žitnjak 35.30 58,283 1,651.3
6. Novi Zagreb - istok 16.54 65,301 3,947.1
7. Novi Zagreb - zapad 62.59 48,981 782.5
8. Trešnjevka - sjever 5.83 55,358 9,498.6
9. Trešnjevka - jug 9.84 67,162 6,828.1
10. CČrnomerec 24.33 38,762 1,593.4
11. Gornja Dubrava 40.28 61,388 1,524.1
12. Donja Dubrava 10.82 35,944 3,321.1
13. Stenjevec 12.18 41,257 3,387.3
14. Podsused - Vrapče 36.05 42,360 1,175.1
15. Podsljeme 60.11 17,744 295.2
16. Sesvete 165.26 59,212 358.3
17. Brezovica 127.45 10,884 85.4
TOTAL 641.43 779,145 1,214.9


City government

The current mayor of Zagreb is Milan Bandić (elected with the support of SDP, but has since become an independent, losing membership in his party).

The city assembly is composed of 51 representatives. As of 2009 the member parties/lists are:

Elections

Transport

Highways

Petlja Držićeva Slavonska.jpg

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 upgraded coincided with the Mura Bridge opening on A4 and the completion of the Hungarian M7, which marked the opening of the first freeway corridor between Rijeka and Budapest.[28] The A1 starts at Lučko interchange and concurs with the A6 up to the Bosiljevo 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.[29]

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.[29]

Highway A2 is a part of the Corridor Xa.[30] It connects Zagreb and the frequently congested Macelj border crossing, forming a continuous highway-level link between Zagreb and Western Europe except for the Slovenian part, which is still just a primary route.[29][31] 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.[29][32] 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.[33] 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.[33][34]

Roads

Zagrebačka Avenue

The city has an avenue network with several main arteries up to ten lanes wide and Zagreb bypass, a congested four-lane highway encircling most of the city. There is much congestion in the city center during the rush hour and a daytime parking problem. 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 artery, former Highway "Brotherhood and Unity", consisting of Ljubljanska Avenue, Zagrebačka Avenue and Slavonska Avenue; and the Vukovarska Avenue, the closest bypass of the city center. The avenues were supposed to alleviate traffic problem, but most of them are today gridlocked at rush hour and others, like Branimirova Avenue are gridlocked during the whole day.

Bridges

As of 2007, 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) Franjo Tuđman Street Connects Zagreb to its close exurbs by old road to Samobor, the fastest route to Bestovje 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) Most famous bridge in Zagreb. The bridge spans from Savska Street in the north to the Western Rotary in the south.
Sava Bridge Savski most 1938 Pedestrian since the construction of the Adriatic Bridge 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.[35]
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, 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 Trnje, Peščenica, Donja Dubrava and Maksimir.
Homeland Bridge Domovinski most 2007 Four-lane road bridge (also carries two bicycle and two pedestrian lanes) This bridge is the last bridge built on Sava to date; it links Peščenica via the 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 Sava, one near Sava bridge and one near Mičevec, as well as two bridges that are part of 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 TMK 2200 on Line 6
ZET bus on line 106

Public transportation in the city is organized in two layers: the inner parts of the city are mostly covered by trams and the outer suburbs are linked with buses. The public transportation company, ZET (Zagrebački električni tramvaj, Zagreb Electric Tram), operating trams, all inner bus lines, and the most of the suburban lines, is subsidized by the city council.

The funicular (uspinjača) in the historic part of the city is a tourist attraction. Taxis are readily available with the prices significantly higher than in other Croatian cities.

As of 1992, the state rail operator HŽ (Hrvatske željeznice, Croatian Railways) has been developing a network of suburban trains in metropolitan Zagreb area.

Tram network

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 25–50 km/h (15-31 mph), but slow considerably during rush hour. The network is unique as it operates mostly at the curb.

An ambitious program is currently underway to replace old trams with the new and modern ones built mostly in Zagreb by companies Končar elektroindustrija and, to a lesser extent, by TŽV Gredelj. Dubbed "TMK 2200", 70 trams have been delivered in 2005–2007 period, and delivery of additional 70 trams is contracted and already started.[36]

Suburban rail network

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 commuting opportunity.[37] A new link to the nearby town of Samobor has been announced and is due to start construction in 2009. This link will be standard-gauge and tie in with normal Croatian Railways operations (the previous narrow-gauge line to Samobor was closed in the 1970s).[38]

Air traffic

Zagreb Airport (IATA: ZAGICAO: LDZA), known as 'Pleso Airport' is the main Croatian international airport, a 20 km (12 mi) drive southeast of Zagreb in the suburb of Pleso. The airport is also the main Croatian airbase featuring helicopters, as well as military and freight transport aircraft. New terminal is planned for 2011 to replace the current inadequate building, with construction commencing in 2008.[39]

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.[40]

A third, small grass airfield, Buševec, is located just outside Velika Gorica. It is primarily used for sports purposes.[41]

Education

There are 136 primary schools and 100 secondary schools including 30 gymnasiums.[42][43] There are 5 public higher education institution and 9 private professional higher education schools.[44]

University

Founded in 1669, the University of Zagreb is the oldest 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.[45]

Cultural sites

Museums

Moderna galerija

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.

Archeological Museum

The Archaeological Museum (19 Nikola Šubić Zrinski Square) collections, today consisting of nearly 400,000 varied artifacts and monuments, have been gathered over the years from many different sources. These holdings include evidence of Croatian presence in the area.[46] 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.

Croatian Natural History Museum

The Croatian Natural History Museum (1 Demetrova Street) holds one of the world's most important collection of Neanderthal remains found at one site.[47] 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 different collections.

Museum of Technology

The Museum of Technology (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.[48]

Museum of the City of Zagreb

The 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.[49] 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 75,000 items arranged systematically into collections of artistic and mundane objects characteristic of the city and its history.

Arts and Crafts Museum

The 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.[50]

Ethnographic Museum

The 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.[51]

Mimara Museum

Mimara Museum at night

The museum called the "Art Collection of Ante and Wiltrud Topić Mimara" or, for short, the 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.[52] The holdings comprise 3,750 works of art of various techniques and materials, and different cultures and civilizations.

Croatian Naïve Art Museum

The Croatian Naïve Art Museum (works by Croatian primitivists at 3 Ćirilometodska Street) is considered to be the first museum of naïve art in the world.[citation needed] The museum keeps 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 1500 works of art - paintings, sculptures, drawings and prints, mainly by Croatians but also by other well-known world artists.[53] From time to time, the museum organizes topics and retrospective exhibitions by naïve artists, expert meetings and educational workshops and playrooms.

Museum of Contemporary Art

New building of the Museum of Contemporary Art

The Museum of Contemporary Art was founded in 1954 and a rich collection of Croatian and foreign contemporary visual art has been collected throughout the decades. The Museum (2 St. Catherine's Square) is located in a space within the Kulmer Palace in the Gornji Grad. The new Museum building in Novi Zagreb opened in 2009.[54]

Other museums and galleries

Zagreb's Meštrovićev Paviljon

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 Strossmayer's Old Masters Gallery (11 Zrinski Square) offers permanent holdings presenting European paintings from the 14th to 19th centuries,[55] 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.

Other cultural sites and events

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.

RFF is a new film festival, which will have its third edition this January. The RFF is organized and run by a group of young enthusiasts, who struggle to find some way of expressing themselves in "this cruel world".[citation needed]

Religious organizations

The Archdiocese of Zagreb is a metropolitan see of the Catholic Church in Croatia, serving as its religious center. The current Archbishop is Josip Cardinal Bozanić.Zagreb is also the Episcopal see of the Metropolitan of Zagreb, Ljubljana and all of Italy of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Islamic religious organization of Croatia has the see in Zagreb. Current president is Mufti Ševko Omerbašić. A mosque used to be located at the Žrtava Fašizma Square, but it was relocated to the neighborhood of Borovje in Peščenica.

Surroundings

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.

Tourism

Hotel Esplanade/Regent

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 around half 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.

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.

Souvenirs and gastronomy

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

Zagreb Arena night view
Sports and Recreational Center Šalata

There are several 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[56] 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 is was finished in 2008. The handball arena has 15,024[57] seats and it 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 p art of the year.

The 38,923[58]-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.

Zagreb events

Zagreb was, and is, the host of some of the most popular artists in music industry, such as Rolling Stones (1976. & 1998.), U2, Eric Clapton, Depeche Mode, Prodigy, Beyonce, Nick Cave, Manu Chao, Massive Attack, Metallica and many more. This is mostly recognized because of the cities location in central and eastern Europe, and it's good traffic relations with other neighbouring capital cities in that part of Europe. 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.

Notable sports clubs

Club Leagues Venue Established
NK Dinamo Croatian First Football League Maksimir Stadium 1945
NK Zagreb Croatian First Football League Stadium Kranjčevićeva 1903
NK Lokomotiva Croatian First Football League Kajzerica 1914
NK Hrvatski Dragovoljac Croatian Second Football League Siget 1975
KK Cibona Euroleague, NLB League (regional) and A1 Basketball League (national) Dražen Petrović Basketball Hall 1946
KK Zagreb NLB League (regional) and A1 Basketball League (national) Trnsko Gymnasium 1970
KK Cedevita A1 Basketball League Sutinska Vrela Gymnasium 1991
RK Zagreb Croatian First League of Handball Dom Športova 1922
HAVK Mladost Croatian First Water polo League PVC Mladost na Savi 1946
HAVK Mladost (rowing) Jarun 1912
AOK Mladost Croatian 1A Volleyball League Dom Odbojke 1945
HARK Mladost Interleague (regional) and Croatian Rugby League ŠRC Mladost 1954
HASTK Mladost 1945
Zagrebački plivački klub Bazen "Utrine" 1934
HAPK Mladost PVC Mladost 1945
VK Medveščak Croatian First Water polo League ŠRC Šalata 1946
Ski klub Zagreb Sljeme 1918
KHL Medveščak Erste Bank Eishockey Liga and Croatian Championship Dom Športova 1961

International relations

Satellite photo of Zagreb showing the Sava River and Medvednica mountain.

Twin towns — Sister cities

Zagreb is twinned with the following towns and cities:[59]

Partner cities

The city has partnership arrangements with:

See also

References

Bibliography

Notes

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  3. ^ a b c (Croatian)"Vital Statistics in 2006", First Release (City of Zagreb, City Institute for Urban Planning, Statistics Department), 2007-10-26, http://www.zagreb.hr/UserDocsImages/Vitalna%20statistika%20u%202006..doc, retrieved 2008-08-29 
  4. ^ "The World According to GaWC 2008".
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  29. ^ a b c d Croatian highway authorities
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