Monday, 13 December 2021

A Jolly Good Trip: Digital Nomads Discover Zagreb County

TCN joins a merry band of digital nomads on a tour of Zagreb County, discovering some of the fine things the region has to offer

Digital nomads residing in Zagreb got together to recap the year at the Zagreb Digital Nomad Jolly WrapUp event that took place last week.

After the opening night hangout and the panel that followed the next day, a merry band of digital nomads set off on tour of Zagreb County on Saturday, December 11th. Sure, Advent in Zagreb might be the star of the show, but there’s plenty to see and do around the Croatian capital: the plan for the day promised nice views, cake, dinner and wine. Of course we tagged along - to the bus we go!


It took a whole five minutes for the sleepy crowd to perk up thanks to James who ingeniously brought along three bottles of rakija, all different kinds at that. Many thanks, kind sir! The goods were generously passed around the bus and we quickly got to chatting - it was looking out to be a jolly good trip indeed.

First stop - Medvedgrad, a 13th century castle perched on the southern slope of Medvednica mountain. The medieval fortress solemnly stands guard over the city of Zagreb, offering a spectacular view over the capital and its surroundings.


Left to ruin for hundreds of years, the castle was restored a few decades ago, with the most recent addition being an educational visitor centre completed in 2020. By a stroke of luck, Medvedgrad suffered no damage in the devastating earthquakes that hit the area last year.


The new visitor centre is a work of art - more on that coming soon in a separate feature. Housed in the south tower and two palaces, several sleek exhibits unveil the secrets of Medvedgrad: medieval history, legends and mysteries, nature and wildlife, all superbly presented through a series of interactive displays. We had loads of fun exploring the castle grounds and admired the winter landscape from the top of the tower. 



On to Samobor, a charming little town located a 10 minute drive from the city of Zagreb. The town is known for the lively traditional carnival (Fašnik) that takes place in February, but also for its artisans and craftspeople manufacturing various goods and souvenirs such as the licitar hearts.

It was too cold a day for any ambitious sightseeing and we were perfectly happy to get acquainted with our destination in a different way: feasting on kremšnita, the iconic custard cream cake Samobor is famous for.


We gathered at the Livadić cafe on the main square for a generous serving of kremšnita and coffee to warm up before the last leg of the tour.


And what a finale it was: an early dinner and wine tasting at the Jagunić winery, a family-run establishment and part of the wine road on Plešivica hill. We got there just in time to see the sun set over the rolling hills - quite a scenic backdrop even in the middle of December, and I can only imagine how sublime the view gets in spring when the entire landscape is in bloom.


It was evident how much love and care goes into everything the Jagunić family does, from grape growing and winemaking to hosting guests in their restaurant. We got a taste of the region’s traditional cuisine with a wonderful four course meal, each course paired with a different Jagunić wine.


The family predominantly produces sparkling wines, as well as whites and amber orange wines. They’re made from several grape varieties grown in their own vineyards. As our host explained during his warm welcome speech, their approach to winemaking starts with the soil and ends at the table; they control every step of the process.


Genuine hospitality and a superb eno-gastro experience. It’s a spot not to miss - pair it with a visit to Samobor or the nearby Jastrebarsko town and you have yourself a fantastic day trip. We certainly enjoyed discovering some of the fine things Zagreb County has to offer - thanks for having us, and until next time!


Tuesday, 12 October 2021

Medvedgrad Opening Planned for End of October after 3 Year Renovation

October 12, 2021 - The Medvedgrad opening is planned for October 22 after a 3-year renovation that aimed to establish sustainable use of natural heritage through the Medvedgrad Visitor Center.

The renovation of the Medvedgrad burg has been completed, which will be open to visitors at the end of this month. Namely, the Public Institution Nature Park Medvednica has implemented the EU project "Improving visitor capacity for sustainable management of the Nature Park Medvednica" since 2018, which aims to establish sustainable use of natural heritage through the opening of the Medvedgrad Visitor Center and related facilities to contribute to sustainable social-economic development at the local and regional level, reports HRTurizam.

The EU project was valued at 37,726,252.75 kuna to restore and arrange protected cultural property of the medieval noble town of Medvedgrad, which became the Medvedgrad Visitor Center with several functional units.

In the South Tower, a display of natural and cultural values ​​of the Medvednica Nature Park has been arranged to educate visitors about the values ​​and importance of the protected area. The rich history of Medvedgrad and the Park itself called "Enchanted History" is shown in the central part of the Grand Palace, which also houses the newly equipped space of the multifunctional hall and souvenir shop. The small palace contains a museum exhibition "Secrets of the Ancient Mountains" which includes a display of a medieval pantry and a shadow theater.

The implementation of the EU project carried out other demanding project activities that contributed to achieving the goal of protecting, valorizing, educating, and promoting sustainable management of natural heritage, protecting cultural and natural heritage in the Medvednica Nature Park, making it a recognizable tourist destination that contributes to socio-economic development.

In addition to construction and architectural work, some of the basic management documents were developed, such as cycling development strategy, with accompanying action plans, visitor management strategy, Visitor Center branding, marketing plan, visitor center security manual, which included cooperation with HGSS, marking eight bike paths, setting up informational educational boards, but also marking the access to Medvedgrad, purchasing electric bicycles, designing and making toys, and creating educational workshops.

"By opening the Medvedgrad Visitor Center, Croatia gets a new ecological, tourist, and economic content," said Marina Popijač, director of the Medvednica Nature Park, who added that the official opening of the Medvedgrad Visitor Center is planned for Friday, October 22, and will be open for visitors from October 23 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.

For more on lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Tuesday, 9 June 2020

Medvedgrad Getting Glass Lookout, Multimedia Hall, Theatre...

The main phenomenon of the Medvednica Nature Park is the Sljeme forest, but much more is coming to Medvedgrad, and a museological exhibition of biodiversity will be placed in the south tower.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 9th of June, 2020, back in November 2018, the most demanding and largest project for the reconstruction of Medvedgrad began. The Visitor Centre and other parts of its infrastructure are now slowly coming together and being properly arranged. The project is worth almost 30 million kuna, and more than 80 percent of that enormous figure came from European Union (EU) funds, writes HRT.

After several renovations in the past, Medvedgrad is getting a new look once again.

''Everything we found there, we tried to reconstruct in such a way that it remains in the same volume and in the same form, and everything we added we tried to make sure it appeared visibly added,'' explained designer Ivo Vranjican.

Elegant benches made of strong Slavonian oak, glass on the lookout so as not to spoil the view of the outlines of the nearby City of Zagreb, a multimedia hall and a theatre of light and shadow - these are the novelties that will come to be in beautiful Medvedgrad.

''We will also set up a certain multimedia exhibition, we will have space for certain conferences and workshops, and downstairs there is a catering facility that we hope to rent out to someone who can deal with that,'' noted Marina Popijac, the director of PP Medvednica (Medvednica Nature Park).

''Everything is quite technologically modern, so there will be some exhibits that will be performed in a way that are multimedia and active in their essence, so I think it will be very interesting for visitors,'' said Andrea Kostelic, the director of promotion, education and interpretation.

As previously touched on, the main phenomenon of the Medvednica Nature Park is the beautiful, rich Sljeme forest, and a museological exhibition of biodiversity will be placed in the south tower to give it even more of an extra edge.

The first visitors are expected at the end of the year.

Follow our lifestyle page for more. If it's just Zagreb and its surroundings you're interested in, check out Zagreb in a Page and Total Zagreb for all you need to know.

Thursday, 7 June 2018

Zagreb, Where Are Your Bears?


Saturday, 23 September 2017

Medieval Days on Medvednica Takes Place This Weekend

A true medieval experience!

Monday, 11 September 2017

Medieval Days on Medvednica

Missing Game of Thrones? Get your dose of medieval times at Medvedgrad, September 23 and 24.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Medvedgradske glazbene večeri in Zagreb July 14-16

The concerts in Medvedgrad have become traditional events that enrich the summer cultural offer of the city of Zagreb. Organized by the Center for Culture and Film Augusta Cesarca, in collaboration with the Public Institution "Nature Park Medvednica" and Menart BPM, this year’s Medvedgrad musical evenings will be held over three nights throughout the summer.