Zagreb is the capital city of Croatia. The European city is encircled by a rich display of history, culture, and architecture. Unfortunately, many tourists tend to miss this charming city with bustling streets, cobblestones, Baroque cathedrals, and natural beauty in favor of the coastal destinations. However, Zagreb is a historic city with so much to offer for a travel enthusiast, from socialist architecture to Austro-Hungarian architecture, museums, beautiful parks, and galleries.
In addition, the city boasts a plethora of UNESCO World Heritage sites that will fascinate you. During the winter, Zagreb makes an unforgettable winter destination with its extravagant Christmas market. Believed to be the most important Christmas markets in Europe, tourists are often spoiled for choice during their visit to the city. Join us as we explore the best places to visit during a day trip from Zagreb.
Croatia COVID19 travel Restrictions
Note: Croatia is going by the European Centre for Disease and Prevention Control (ECDC).
• Entry is permitted for all travelers from Schengen Area and EEA countries. You must present a valid EU Digital COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate. Here are some documents you may be required to submit to enter the country without the certificate; a negative PCR test, vaccination certificate, a Coronavirus recovery certificate.
• You may get tested (at your own expense) upon arrival and practice self-isolation until you receive your result if you are a traveler from EEA/EU countries.
• Check out the EU’s list of epidemiologically safe countries to find more information about your eligibility to enter Croatia.
Be sure to check for the updated COVID19 restrictions whenever you choose to travel.
Best destinations on a Day Trip from Zagreb
1. Plitvice Lakes
Plitvice Lakes is ideal for starting if you only have time for a one-day trip from Zagreb. Plitvice Lakes National Park harbors 16 of the most beautiful lakes in Croatia. The government of Croatia has preserved these lakes to maintain their pristine natural beauty. So if you are looking to flee the landlocked capital of Zagreb, the Plitvice Lakes make up for an exciting day trip.
You can reach the lakes just a couple of hours from the capital and enjoy the clear waters, waterfalls, and a play in the sun. This trip can be taken any day of the year as the area is rich with sites despite the season.
The best time to tour the park’s main attractions is the afternoon. The park offers beautiful views of the lakes, turquoise falls, and fulfilling forest walks along the lake shores.
If you love nature, this is the absolute perfect destination for you. The Plitvice Lakes National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We recommend a day trip to Plitvice from Zagreb during your visit to Croatia.
Did you know that Zagreb lies only about 35 minutes from the border of Slovenia? A drive from Zagreb to Slovenia’s capital city will only take you up to two hours (it may take a bit longer during the busier times of the year due to border patrol). Ljubljana city is highly populated with countless Baroque buildings. Visit the Old city center to see most of the historic buildings. The town has copious to offer in the way of both Historical and Cultural attractions. A significant number of the Baroque buildings are UNESCO World Heritage sites. The historic city center is entirely pedestrian with a lot of pastel-colored architecture. Take an afternoon walk around the city center and visit the Ljubljana castle. One day will be enough for you to explore this bejeweled city. For your transfer from Zagreb to Ljubljana we are at your service.
A road trip from Zagreb to Trieste will take you nearly 3 hours. Trieste is a beautiful old town with a serene atmosphere. The city boasts a rich culture and historical heritage. The town neighbors the Adriatic Sea giving it breathtaking sights.
Descend into the center of the town to catch the most picturesque sights of this town. It is located at an intersection of different nations and cultures, making it a must-visit if you love to explore other cultures.
Another day trip you may love is Zagreb to Dakovo. The serene town is surrounded by various cornfields that give it scenic beauty.
The one thing you shouldn’t miss during your visit is the Dakovo Cathedral. It is a beautiful red brick monastery with soaring towers and a landmark in the center.
There is always a fun folkloric event in the town, making it the perfect place to visit.
This 300-year-old village is located on the way between Zagreb and Plitvice Lakes National park. The town is a common stop, especially amongst the locals. It is a delightful picturesque getaway. But, unfortunately, many travelers tend to miss this gem.
Rastoke is notorious for its beautiful combination of windmills and waterfalls.
You can spend a day here strolling around and taking pictures of the traditional windmills. Some of the windmills go as far back as the 1600s. The village is small enough to see within two hours and is worth the trip from Zagreb.
A drive to Istria will take you approximately 3 hours from Zagreb. Istria is located west of Croatia and is the most significant part of the Istrian Peninsula. Visiting Pula, Opatija, Poreč and other beautiful towns one day is not enough. Also, Rijeka is nearby and you should visit this city too.
Istria has a rich history, with many Greek myths mentioning the city. Many Greek travelers and sailors are familiar with the city. It is a beehive of attractions with UNESCO World Heritage Sites and ancient Roman architecture. A trip to this ancient city will be both satisfying and breathtaking.
7. Lake Bled
Lake Bled, a beautiful combination of castles, lakes, alpine peaks, and churches found in Croatia’s Julian Alps past Ljubljana, is a popular destination amongst locals and tourists. Lake Bled is the ultimate destination for a romantic getaway or an outdoor adventure. Voyagers from all corners of the globe visit this picturesque destination to hike, climb, and canoe. If you are in search of a change in scenery from Zagreb, visit Lake Bled.
If you intend to see what a 20th Century Zagorie village looked like, book yourself a day trip from Kumrovec to Zagreb. The town is located in northwest Croatia along the Sutla River. It is famous for being home to communist Yugoslavia founder, an army commander called Josip Broz Tito. On the other hand, if you are a historian traveler, take this day trip and visit the Ethnological Museum.