Wandering Through Zagreb

Phase two of my month of travel takes me from Virginia to Zagreb, Croatia. Why here? A former co-worker of mine left at the same time I did and has moved here to teach at an international school for two years, so why not?

I left Tuesday night at 6:15pm from Dulles and headed for London before connecting to Zagreb. I had no issues with security, my layover, or crowded planes (on the aisle with an empty seat next to me both times!). Upon landing in Zagreb, Katie had arranged for a car to pick me up and deliver me to her apartment. There was light snow falling and it was gorgeous! Katie’s place is in the ideal location for touring the city so I dropped my bags and off we went. I should mention that it was about noon on Wednesday when I got here.

We decided to hit some of the major sites in Zagreb so I could learn my way around for the next few days when I’d be on my own while Katie finishes teaching for the week. So we walked through the main square and up to St. Mark’s Church (shown below) which has interesting tile-work on the roof. Then we explored the Museum of Broken Relationships which was really cool! It’s artifacts are all items people have sent in and are accompanied by the story of how that piece sums up the end of their relationships. There was anything from a bike someone used to get away to an anniversary dress that was never worn to a stuffed animal that had been a memento. So it was glorified gossip, I loved it 🙂

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From the museum we wandered through the flower square and up to the Cathedral of the Assumption (shown below), which was currently being renovated but has gorgeous carvings all around it and an wonderful story of surviving an earthquake years ago. There was also a really cool clock on the wall near the church, but you’ll have to wait for those pictures. We had dinner/lunch at a cute restaurant on a pedestrian street and then headed in out of the cold to plan our week together. I managed to stay awake until 10:30pm after only a few hours of sleep here and there on planes.

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This morning I got up, got my interval workout in by running to Ribnjak Park nearby and then running laps at varying speeds. Then back to Katie’s to shower and head out for the day! Those of you who know me know that old people/death/dying and art museums aren’t really my thing. Sorry to be so random, but the point of that statement was because I chose to walk to a cemetery that was described as an outdoor art museum, lol. It was sunny and sounded cool, so a nice walk seemed smart even though it was two miles away and uphill. It gave me a chance to explore the city more on the way there and back.

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The walled entrance of the Mirogoj Cemetery was impressive, and seemed to rise up out of a typical residential area. The main building resembled a church and was closed for a funeral at the time. The two images above are the front and back of the main building, which really show the different styles present. Even more incredible were the headstones and monuments and statues that were lined up row after row after row. Some had huge structures and were for entire families, some were quite small with fresh flowers, others had benches to sit or personalized features like a waterfall or pet sculpted into them. The cemetery was huge and I saw only a fraction of it in the nearly two hours I spent there. An example of one of the more ornate tombs is below, but unfortunately you’ll have to wait until I get home to see the rest.

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After that I headed back towards town, saw a few more churches, stopped to grab sausages for lunch, then wandered the streets just enjoying the hustle and bustle and window shopping. Now I’ve paused to post this from a cute cafe before meeting up with Katie for more exploring and dinner. So far I have enjoyed Zagreb and find it to be a charming, reasonably-sized European town! Sorry if the spacing on this post was off, like I said before I will be experimenting with posting from my iPad and using pictures from my iPhone. Hope everyone is having a great week back in the States!

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Raymond Oliver
    Feb 07, 2013 @ 15:29:18

    Karen, Thank you for our wonderful visit. It is al;ways great to have time with you. Glad your trip to Europe was smooth. How did you stay awake that long in Zagreb? Sounds likea an interesting place. Keep exploring, and keep us up with your blogs which we appreciate so much. G- Dad & G- Mom O

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  2. Trackback: ZAG to TAV « Rays of Funshine

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