Medvedgrad is a medieval fortified town located on the south slopes of Medvednica mountain, approximately halfway from the Croatian capital Zagreb to the mountain top Sljeme. For defensive purposes it was built on a hill, Mali Plazur, that is a spur of the main ridge of the mountain that overlooks the city. On a clear day the castle can be seen from far away, especially the high main tower. Below the main tower of the castle is Oltar Domovine (Altar of the homeland) which is dedicated to Croatian soldiers killed in the Croatian War of Independence.

In 1242, Mongols invaded Zagreb. The city was destroyed and burned to the ground. This prompted the building of Medvedgrad. Encouraged by Pope Innocent IV, Philip Türje, bishop of Zagreb, built the fortress between 1249 and 1254. It was later owned by bans of Slavonia. Notable Croatian and Hungarian poet and ban of Slavonia Janus Pannonius (Ivan Česmički) died in the Medvedgrad castle on March 27, 1472.

The last Medvedgrad owners and inhabitants was the Gregorijanec family, who gained possession of Medvedgrad in 1562. In 1574, the walls of Medvedgrad were reinforced, but after the 1590 Neulengbach earthquake, the fortress was heavily damaged and ultimately abandoned. It remained in ruins until the late 20th century, when it was partly restored and now offers a panoramic view of the city from an altitude of over 500 meters.

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Medvedgrad, Zagreb, Croatia
See all sites in Zagreb

Details

Founded: 1249-1254
Category: Castles and fortifications in Croatia

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Markus Pfahler (2 years ago)
The whole castle is closed due to renovation. Sadly, nobody bothered to put this information on their English version of their website or on Google Maps, so the visit was pretty pointless.
Tim Axall (2 years ago)
Still closed. Sign on the gate says construction is scheduled until 30Oct2019.
Matija Bartolac (2 years ago)
I've been there at night, found closed gate. It is under reconstruction at the moment so nothing to see up there
Neven Radanović (2 years ago)
Closed 5 years already
Omer Hadzic (3 years ago)
I'm satisfied by visiting Medvedgrad site with my family because of the nature, the view and the fairytale-like castle which pleased my daughter. But the fortress itself is much historically inauthentic because of the too much of modern parts built with modern materials, such as concrete, making it more look like a film stage. Luckily, while we been there we've been informed by the most friendly staff that the Medvedgrad's fortress will be reconstructed in next two years to make it valuable again.
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