Krapina is a town located about sixty kilometers north of Zagreb in Northern Croatia. It is the biggest agglomeration in the north-east of the country. Founded in the 12th century and known for its military reputation in the Middle Ages, the city is known today for its many prehistoric remains. In fact, the highest concentration of Neanderthal bones can be found here.
The best time to visit the city is in the fall. The sky is still blue, the plants are still full of color, and the smell of the surrounding vineyards reaches the town. Krapina is the perfect place to visit after Zagreb on your way to the parks in the north and east of the country.
The town is particularly beautiful because of its romantic castles and legends (the Black Queen, the Ceh, Leh, Meh brotthers and their sister Vilina, the chapel of the three holy kings…). Krapina is also the birthplace of the linguist Ljudevit Gaj, founder of the modern Croatian language. Finally, those who are interested in spas and body treatments should head to Krapinske Toplice, one of the most important spas in Croatia.
What can you visit in Krapina ?
- Krapina is famous all over the world for its many prehistoric sites containing Neanderthal remains (more than 900 fossils dating back 100,000 years), the most famous being the site of Hušnjakovo. The name of the city was also given to a female fossil found nearby that is believed to be the link between Neanderthal man and Homo sapiens. The prehistoric museum is today one of the major tourist attractions of the city. Its little brother, the archaeological museum will please old stone lovers.
- Another tourist attraction, the museum of old cars is also worth a look.
- In September, don’t miss the Kajkavian cultural week, which celebrates the local dialect, especially through songs, or the Kajkavske popevke festival.
- Krapina’s historical center with Dr. Ljudevit Gaj’s house-museum and Majcen’s house, which has a painting gallery, reveals another interesting face of the city.
- Built in 1760, the Church of Our Lady of Jerusalem in Trški Vrh is the most famous church in Krapina.
- The church of St. Catherine and the Franciscan monastery date from 1650. Today, the church hosts many classical and religious concerts.
- St. Nicholas Church, the oldest local church, is worth a visit during your walk through the city center.