Zagreb - getting ready to head east

Zagreb Travel Blog

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Back in Zagreb!
This year's plan was to meet up in Zagreb, then head east.... and that was about the extent of the plan! Maybe we'd go north into Hungary and Romania, maybe south to Kosovo and Greece... As it turned out we did neither! That's what happens when you travel with an itinerary built on the fly as you go! By the end of the month we'd covered 2000 miles and crossed all of former Yugoslavia and much of the Balkans.

I was happy to be back in Zagreb. After being stuck there for a week last year after a missed flight, I'd become sort of attached to the city.

The plan was to start planning our trip around southeastern Europe there, but of course we immediately started traveling instead. We walked around the city for the afternoon before heading up north couple days up north near the Hungarian/Slovenian border to visit friends, before heading east, into the unknown.
Croatian Airlines Airbus - rough weather coming over the Alps


We'd planned to go east, then to the north, maybe Romania or even the Ukraine, but east was the only certainty at this point.

Zagreb is a beautiful, clean city with almost a small town feel, despite being the capital. We even ran into people we knew walking around downtown - I might come across someone I know at random about once a year in San Diego... It's nice there in the summer, though hot - the city's nearly empty with most of the population apparently vacationing on the coast.

The layout is a well preserved ancient city at the foot of the mountains, surrounded by the river, surrounded by communist era high-rise housing, surrounded by farms. The streets are tree-lined, and bright blue trams are everywhere carrying commuters across the city.
Tree-lined streets of Zagreb
There are plenty of squares and gardens to break up the downtown area.

The city for the most part escaped major bombing in WWII or during the Balkan War, so much of the old city is intact and has been kept in good condition. If you visit a cathedral in France or Germany, it's likely to have been rebuilt after the war.

Young people will generally know a little English or maybe some German, but expect to use some basic Croatian or sign language in a grocery store, buying bus tickets, etc. English or other foreign languages are not generally understood. One warning though, Croatian is really hard to learn! If you don't speak a Slavic language, it really takes some studying to pick up the grammar and pronunciation.

Prices are low, compared to the western European capitals, but would seem high to us by the time we returned from the eastern European countries we'd visit on this trip. Public transportation is great, and downtown is small, compact and walkable. One complaint that I have heard though, is that for some reason the hostels are relatively expensive, and there are few of them around. Expect to pay what you would in the EU here in the capital for a room.


Acy_jkt says:
congrats on being featured :)
Posted on: Aug 13, 2008
Jelly says:
Have fun David!
Posted on: Jul 08, 2008
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Back in Zagreb!
Back in Zagreb!
Croatian Airlines Airbus - rough w…
Croatian Airlines Airbus - rough …
Tree-lined streets of Zagreb
Tree-lined streets of Zagreb
Look at this! Our friend Iva rando…
Look at this! Our friend Iva rand…
Funicular between the upper and lo…
Funicular between the upper and l…
Saint Marks Church in the Upper C…
Saint Mark's Church in the Upper …
Downtown Zagreb from uptown Zagreb
Downtown Zagreb from uptown Zagreb
The Westin where Bush stayed this …
The Westin where Bush stayed this…
The old city with the high rise ap…
The old city with the high rise a…
Zvonka left me for some stupid met…
Zvonka left me for some stupid me…
we made up though..
we made up though..
Hanging around with A.G. Matos
Hanging around with A.G. Matos
Corn, cucumber, and tomato pizza
Corn, cucumber, and tomato pizza
Doing something weird in front of …
Doing something weird in front of…
Beer with our friends Iva and Ivana
Beer with our friends Iva and Ivana
Zagreb
photo by: EmEm