Zagreb

Ozalj

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Fans of medieval cities will be delighted with the town of Ozalj which is situated on a cliff overlooking the Kupa River.
This little town lies close to the border with Slovenia, near the Dobra and Kupa rivers and close to lakes richly stocked with fish, protected by the serrated Žumberak mountains to the north, and surrounded by gentle hills and vineyards. At the centre of the little town stands, high on a limestone rock, Ozalj's castle, the symbol of the town. Founded in the 13th century and owned by successive Frankopan and Zrinski dukes, the castle grew into a small walled city. A newer part of town later grew up at the foot of the fort, but the overriding impression is a charming medieval one.
Since it acted as a seat for these noble families, the town once had a far greater importance than you would think now, including a rich cultural and literary life based on the Kajkavian dialect. Ozalj has both a Native Museum and an Ethno Park, which are excellent for giving you an insight into this cultural past and into local traditions. The museum is where you can find everything from prehistoric remains to artefacts from the time of the noble families; from the military to the religious and spiritual life of the area. There’s also a collection of landscapes by local painter Slava Raškaj. The Ethno Park (actually the ethnographic department of the museum) is where you can see the heartbreakingly pretty thatched cottages typical of the area, and the simple but pristine, whitewashed and wooden interiors brightened with flashes of colour of handmade textiles.
In the Ozalj area there are numerous stately homes and palaces dotted around. One of the most surprising looks rather like a miniature English castle, lying right by a weir on the Kupa riverbank. This “Stone Palace” is, in fact, a hydro-electric power plant, dating back to 1908, one of the first in Croatia. Although it really did work, serving Karlovac with electricity, this neo-renaissance building is nowadays a listed monument.
All in all, we vote Ozalj a great day out.

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Associated Venues

Ozalj Native Museum

Ul. Zrinskih i Frankopana 2, Ozalj
/zagreb/ozalj-native-museum_117294v

Ozalj Tourist Board

Kurilovac 1, Ozalj
/zagreb/ozalj-tourist-board_117295v
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