Koprivnica is probably one of the most beautiful destinations in Northern Croatia and has one of the most romantic parks in the region.
Koprivnica has a similar history to its neighbor Varaždin and was first mentioned in 1272 using the name of a local stream. The town developed through trade and its very important military facilities, especially during the Renaissance period when the town was a key location on the border with Slavonia. It was home to a high concentration of military personnel, but also made use of the scientific and cultural advances of the time.
The town was declared a peaceful city and was able to grow outside its fortifications to become an important place for regional trade. The town was also known as Kopreinitz and was part of the Austrian Empire until the beginning of World War I. It acquired its present name in 1871.
Koprivnica is also infamous for hosting Danica, the country’s first concentration camp during World War II.
What can you visit in Koprivnica?
The town is home to 30,000 people and three historic churches that are worth a visit: St. Nicholas, St. Anthony of Padua and the Franciscan Monastery of the Virgin Mary. Such a concentration of religious buildings for a small town shows Koprivnica’s importance in the past centuries. The old town, built within the fortified city walls, can be visited by foot and allows you to go back in time and re-live Croatian history.
The city is considered a center of Croatian gastronomy. Podravka, a food company that produces a condiment known all over the world (Vegeta) and invented in 1959, is based here. You can also find the Museum of Food here. Koprivnica also has some of the most famous restaurants in the region.
Many painters of the naïve movement have made a name for themselves on the banks of the Drava River, including the famous Ivan Generalić. Thats why the town turns into an art gallery every year and puts naive art in the spotlight. This annual tourist event is called “Motifs of Podravina”.
Finally, the nearby Drava-Mura River is a great attraction for fishing and hunting enthusiasts. There are also several good cycling routes for cycling fans.