Would you like to smell the freshness of the ploughed land, listen to the birdsong at dawn, see the dew on the freshly mown grass whilst you walk barefoot and touch nature with your whole being? If you do, Hrvatsko zagorje can offer all this to you. Holiday on the fields of Zagorje, the hills and pastures that are intertwined with the experience of the old, slow way of life. It is nature-oriented, the contact with the animals which you care about and feed, and the cultivation of plants. Hrvatsko Zagorje is situated in the central part of Croatia, among Invanscica, Kalnicko gorje and Medvednica and the rivers Sava and Sutla. This adds to its relief variety and offers many possibilities for various activities in the open air like walking, biking tours, riding in nature, grape harvesting, blackberry and mushroom picking etc. Zagorje is well known for its rich gastronomic offer which can be tasted in many taverns, restaurants where autochthon, homemade food is prepared as e.g. the turkey of Zagorje, kukuruzna zlevka (cake) and other delicacies. Enliven your taste buds by coming to Hrvatsko Zagorje.
Tour suggestion – Baroque towns of Zagorje and a traditional village
Varazdin – Lepoglava – Krapina – Kumrovec
Varazdin – a baroque town of flowers and music. Very often called Little Vienna, because of its charm and baroque atmosphere. While you walk the streets of Varazdin, you are enshrouded in the spirit of the past which is present at every street corner. You should definitely visit Stari Grad – the old baroque fortress with the town museum, the town hall in which Croatian Parliament resided in the period when Varazdin was the capital of Croatia until 1776 – the year of the great fire. The old town centre with its towers, streets and houses makes Varazdin one of the most romantic towns in Croatia. Everything is enlivened again especially during the period of the famous Spancirfest, when walking – the so called spanciranje, becomes an activity which takes you back to the old times. It is usually held at the end of August. Regardless of this festival, we recommend walking across Varazdin in all seasons as it is always shrouded in romantic atmosphere.
Lepoglava – baroque town, rich in history. The fact that there is the major state penitentiary which is situated in the old Pauline Monastery, gives Lepoglava a dark and mystical tone. It has a dark history as many well-known Croatians were imprisoned in this penitentiary. Lepoglava is also known for its lace, and today it is linked to the Lace Festival so that the old trade can be revived.
Krapina – the town which is known around the world for its precious historical findings – the prehistoric human remains that go back 130 thousand years. So many years ago and yet they are here, in our proximity. The remains which we can see in the museum. At the very spot of the cave many questions are put regarding time, space, and existence – all of which makes the trip to Krapina a memorable one. In Krapina there is a fortress which is also worth visiting and you should try the culinary delicacies of that part of Zagorje.
Kumrovec – the town which is known around the world for its precious historical findings – the prehistoric human remains that go back 130 thousand years. So many years ago and yet they are here, in our proximity. The remains which we can see in the museum. At the very spot of the cave many questions are put regarding time, space, and existence – all of which makes the trip to Krapina a memorable one. In Krapina there is a fortress which is also worth visiting and you should try the culinary delicacies of that part of Zagorje.
Cellars – For those who enjoy a good drink and a bite to eat this is an inevitable stop in Zagorje. The cellars of the old houses in Zagorje are autochthon. The food and the wine offered here are of excellent quality. In every old house and cellar, one can not only enjoy the food and the drink but also the nature. There are numerous activities in the open, in the shade or on the grass with domestic animals and the traditional games.
Arqueological sites in Zagorje – Zagorje is an area which is rich in archaeological sites of which the world best known is Husnjakovo in Krapina, and there are other cave arqueological sites as the caves: Vindija, Osines jama, Votla pec, Skedenj, Brackova pecina, Sincekova spilja and Velika pecina. The remains of the Neanderthal man were discovered in the Vindija cave, and in other caves there were found stone handmade objects which are attributed to the Neanderthals. The area all across Zagorje is famous for accidental findings of polished stone axes that date from the Early Stone Age, or the Neolithic, Copper Age or the Eneolithic period. Such a condensed treasure site is worth seeing, as well as experiencing the story of each location. The tour The archaeological sites in Zagorje gives us an opportunity to learn about the history in the easiest possible way as well as to enjoy nature.
Husnjakovo in Krapina – surreal, fascinating and astonishing are the words which best describe the experience of the museum of Neanderthal people in Krapina. Thousands of years old remains of humans who once inhabited this location make this an unsurpassable arqueological site of the tour of Zagorje. The story goes back to 1899 – the year when Dragutin Gorjanovic-Kramberger came to the site on the hill of Husnjakovo so he can study the remains of bones and teeth that were found there. By digging out holes in the sand of that hill, the workers found fragments of the bones. During the following six years of excavations some 900 fossils of human remains were found there, as well as numerous stone tools from the Palaeolithic period. The remains of hearths were also found there, from what could be deduced that the prehistoric humans from Krapina were familiar with fire. All remains are well preserved and transformed into tales that can be seen and told and which come alive in this new museum.
Vindija Cave – one more precious archaeological site with younger remains which date back to the Palaeolithic and early Mediaeval Periods. The bone remains enable tracing the evolution of the Neanderthal man to the man from the present. All findings lead to the conclusion that the cave was used as a shelter and for daily activities some 40 000 years BC up to 19th century AD. This precious and rare site will satisfy every visitor who has some interest in history.
Mountain paths of Zagorje – Because of its specific relief and hilly area, Zagorje is an ideal place for mountaineering, walks and mountain biking. These tours take us along the old well trodden mountain paths and discover new areas of hidden natural beauty.
The Kalnik Mountain The highest peak is Vranilac (643 m). The mountain is approximately 40 km long, and it extends from east to the west. It is 10 km wide. It is widely forested by deciduous trees, whereas the characteristics of its central part are the barren cliffs – the target for a large number of mountaineers, climbers and holiday makers.
Educational path – 7 teeth (7 zubi), Kalnicka greda, Vratno, stream Hruskovec.
Kalnik is well attended by both local and foreign climbers. It has 150 routes divided into 7 sectors length of 4 to 22 meters, and two longer routes length of 85 and 150 meters