Photo of Zagreb

About Zagreb

Zagreb is not always high up on the list of places to visit for tourists who come to Croatia, a country that has become renowned for its beaches lining the sparkling Adriatic Sea. However this is very surprising, considering that it has more museums per square feet than any other city in the world. This salient fact still doesn't do the capital of Croatia justice: whether you're walking through the 1000-year-old Old Town, with its winding cobbled streets, red-roof houses and medieval churches, or through the New Town that's strewn with a concoction of Neo-Baroque and Art-Deco buildings housing countless cafes and gourmet restaurants, you will find yourself with umpteen things to see and do. The perfect undiscovered city to get lost in and explore, it is full of live music, good food, and enough art and history to give Rome a run for its money. Our collection of the best places to stay in Zagreb are ideally positioned for accessing all this city has to offer.

It is often said that Zagreb rewards those who walk and this isn't surprising: lazily strolling around the pedestrian-only streets scattered with street stalls and pop-up markets, one minute you'll find yourself at Dolac - the open-air fruit market - and the next you'll stand face-to-face with the neo-Gothic cathedral, with its twin steeples scraping the sky. 

Where to stay - which neighbourhood?

  • The Old Town is called Gornji Grad: charming and medieval, with similar architecture to other Central European cities like Vienna or Prague, it has stood for over 1000 years. A labyrinthine maze of winding cobbled streets full of ancient churches and red-roof houses, it is a simply beautiful place made all the more stunning during Advent, when the streets are lined with fairy lights. It is in Gornji Grad that you'll find some of the city's best-loved museums, whether it's the quirky and popular Museum of Broken Relationships, Zagreb's City Museum or for prehistory, the Convent of the Clares.
  • As you step into the newer parts of the city, life takes on a grittier and more animated edge. Donji Grad, the Lower Town, standing on a grid-plan, is beautifully laid out with tree-lined avenues in the shadow of classically 19th century Hapsburgian buildings.
  • The place-to-be for a good time, a sumptous bite-to-eat or a sip of rakija is Novi Zagreb. It is here that the rawer parts of Zagreb come to life with a different type of beauty and charm: with great Brutalist slabs jutting into the pale blue sky like tombstones, you might think that it is an area bereft of the beauty you find in the older parts of the city. You would be wrong. Everywhere you see brightly coloured murals done by local street artists, and you'll also find the infamous street Tkalciceva, where locals and tourists mingle on lengthy bar crawls.

What Not to miss

  • Museums: where to begin? Zagreb has it all. If you're looking for prehistory, look no further than the Convent of the Clares; for modern history, the Zagreb City Museum has everything from propaganda posters to automatic machine guns; for Greek and Roman finds, as well as over 1700 paintings (from Rembrandt to Raphael) check out the Mimara Museum in the Old Town; if you're after modern art, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Novi Zagreb will blow your mind. For a totally idiosyncratic experience, you have to go to the Museum of Broken Relationships, Zagreb's best-loved museum, full of bizarre and beautiful remnants and depictions of love-gone-wrong.
  • Churches: the cathedral is sublime. With a neo-Gothic facade, twin steeples and, inside the northern wall, the 10 Commandments engraved in the medieval Croatian script "glagolitic". Further along in Gornji Grad is the Church of St. Mark, a beautiful 13th century building with a stunning red, white and blue tiled roof.
  • Nightlife: Zagreb has a notoriously vibrant nightlife, whether it's the bar crawls along the Tkalciceva or the raves in the abandoned buildings of Novi Zagreb.

Though not a high priority for the tourists who annually descend upon Croatia for her beaches, Zagreb is a place steeped in history and is without a doubt the Capital of Good Times, and the best places to stay in Zagreb wil ensure that you leave the city eager to come back.

The best places to stay in Zagreb

For Local exploring

  • Hotel President Pantovcak boasts a highly central location that's an ideal starting-point for exploring the city. It has individually-decorated and spacious rooms and is near a square brimming with markets and cafes.
  • This grand hotel, Amadria Park Hotel Capital, is set in the heart of the city and features early 20th-century art nouveau with chic modern design. There's a fabulous cafe and restaurant too.

For an apartment or villa

  • Our partner Booking.com has a wide range of villas and apartments in the area.

Travel information

  • Fly to Zagreb Airport and get a taxi or shuttle bus to the city centre.
  • Zagreb is far inland and so compared to Dubrovnik and Split, the weather is not as hot. The best time to visit is during the summer months when the temperature averages out at about 20 degrees.
  • If you want to rent a car, contact our partner Rentalcars.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in Zagreb

  • Amadria Park Hotel Capital 10000, Zagreb 112 rooms from AU$176

    This grand hotel in the heart of the city combines early 20th-century art nouveau with chic modern design. Expect stunning art deco windows, doors and stylish contemporary furniture. Elegant rooms are modern and unfussy with statement pieces, and both the restaurant and café are a real delight!

    Local exploring  -  A great base from which to explore the treasures of the Old Town, and many cultural sights are located within easy distance
    Sights nearby  -  Visit the central Ban Jelačić Square, the late-gothic St Mark’s Church or the 13th-century Kamenita Vrata (Stone Gate)
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    Local markets  -  Good for local colour.
    Check Availability
  • Esplanade Zagreb 10000, Zagreb 208 rooms from AU$187

    Built in 1925 for glamorous travelers, this art deco gem is the last word in opulence. Interiors feature various kinds of marble, gold fittings and chandeliers, with a vast glittering ballroom and two gourmet restaurants. Plush rooms have rich, gold-accented tones and luxurious fabrics. Stunning!

    Local exploring  -  Very handy central location ideal for exploring sights, shops and restaurants
    Local markets  -  Head to Dolac Market a farmer's market, known as 'the Belly of Zagreb', which also sells Croatian artisanal items
    Sights nearby  -  Within easy distance of sights such as Zagreb Cathedral and St Mark's Square
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
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  • Hotel President Pantovcak Zagreb 7 rooms from AU$210

    Hotel President Pantovcak enjoys a prime central location in Zagreb. It offers individually decorated and incredibly spacious accommodation with king-sized beds in all the rooms and LCD TV's. Relax in the beautiful garden with a drink after a long day sightseeing. A fantastic and peaceful city stay.

    City Style  -  A unique and stylish boutique, brimming with elegance and understated charm, on a quiet residential street near the town centre
    Local exploring  -  Hotel President Pantovcak is ideally placed just off a charming square filled with cafes and market stalls
    Sights nearby  -  The hotel is situated less than a mile from Cvjetni Square, Tkalciceva Street and Zagreb Cathedral
    Great walks  -  Head out hiking up Sljeme mountain, just outside the city, or take a wander around Jarun lake
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  • Hotel Le Premier Zagreb 66 rooms from AU$240

    This stately five-star hotel is housed in a 20th-century palace in Zagreb's town centre. Rooms are furnished with aristocratic elegance; expect plush linens, chandeliers and marble bathrooms. Eat in the restaurant headed by a Michelin-starred chef or book in at the spa. A grand city getaway.

    Foodies  -  Food-lovers will jump at the chance to eat in the restaurant of Michelin-starred Stefano Cosattini
    City Style  -  With its central location, this hotel is great for exploring the sights of historic Zagreb
    Romantic Break  -  Feel like royalty on a romantic break at this plush, exclusive hotel
    Sights nearby  -  Stroll through Zagreb's historic centre and visit the gothic, twin-spired Zagreb Cathedral and St. Mark’s Church
    Check Availability