Christmas in Zagreb

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Christmas is the best time of the year to visit Zagreb. During the holidays, the city is traditionally lit with festive lights, music echoes in virtually every corner of the city center, and delicious street food and winter beverages are sold at stalls and decorated chalets that populate the city’s streets and squares. This year, the Zagreb Christmas market lasts from December 1, 2018 to January 6, 2019 and it will once again bring a variety of special events to celebrate the winter holiday season in the city.

Visitors will be treated to concerts from Zagreb Christmas balconies, traditional klapa songs and Dubrovnik carols sung by ensembles featured at the Dubrovnik Aklapela Festival, the sounds of Croatia’s largest organ in the Zagreb Cathedral, and a Vienna-style concert program prepared by the Zagreb Soloists. Other notable events include concerts at the Vatroslav Lisinski Concert Hall and the Croatian Music Institute, AdvenTango, a festival of Argentinian dance and music, and a series of theatre shows, operas and ballets at the Croatian National Theatre, Mala Scena and Vidra theatres. The Zagreb Advent Run, a humanitarian race celebrating the spirit of Christmas, will be held for the third consecutive year, with hundreds of participants going on a 5 or 10 km run dressed as Santa Clauses.

Zagreb Christmas market 2018

The Advent season turns Zagreb into a winter fairy tale, one that has left behind even some of Europe’s better known traditional Christmas destinations such as Vienna and Prague in recent years. Voted the Best Christmas Market in Europe for three successive years, the Zagreb Christmas market attracts an increasing number of visitors each year and the city’s holiday offering keeps getting bigger and more varied.

Advent in Zagreb begins with the placing of the Advent wreath around Manduševac fountain on Ban Jelačić Square. This year, the first Advent candle will be lit on Sunday, December 2, and others will light up on the following Sundays until Christmas Eve, when Manduševac will finally get to shine in full splendour. The eastern part of the central square will host the Christmas Tale market, while the opposite side will welcome numerous performers on an open air stage throughout the holiday season.  The Christmas market on European Square will also host a number of stands offering traditional food, drinks and souvenirs, and treat visitors and locals to live performances of DJs and musicians on an open air stage every evening. Klovićevi dvori Gallery will give visitors an opportunity to take their best winter photo while sampling the best traditional delicacies.

One of Zagreb’s most popular Advent attractions, the Ice Park, will return to King Tomislav Square for another season of good music, food, drinks and skating under the stars, while the neighbouring Zrinjevac Park will be one of the best spots to take in the Christmas atmosphere, buy traditional holiday gifts, try various Croatian Christmas delicacies and enjoy live music in the evening.

Special Christmas offers

Travellers looking to spend their Christmas holidays experiencing the magic of Europe’s top Advent destination can book their stay at the Panorama Zagreb Hotel. Croatia’s tallest hotel has prepared special Christmas offers for the upcoming holiday season, offering guests a range of banquet packages with five menus to choose from to celebrate the end of a successful business year. Guests can also enjoy a variety of delicious Christmas holiday cookies and other special culinary delights at the hotel restaurant and Lobby Bar.

Images: Pixabay, Wikimedia Commons/Croq, Branko Radovanović

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