Zagreb is the capital of Croatia and has become increasingly popular as a tourist destination over the past few years. The city is captivating with its quirky museums, chic cafe culture, and fascinating history. Those that love cycling will be happy to know that bike riding in Zagreb County is a real joy. The county boasts 30 routes taking cyclists through forests, to important historical sites, along rivers, and through the Zagreb wine regions.
Zagreb is a delightful city and there a few must-see sites to visit on two wheels before hitting any of the cycle routes. Visit Ban Jelačić Square, St Marks Church, Zagreb Cathedral, Dolac Markets and the spectacular Miragoj Cemetery, which is a park as much as it is a cemetery. Ride on over to Maksimir Park, the oldest cultivated park in Europe, where you can take a leisurely ride around before taking a break to visit the Zagreb Zoo, which is located within Maksimir Park.
The Zaprešić area is known as the Northwestern gate to the Zagreb County and is wedged between the Sava River, Medvednica Nature Park, the Sutla River and Slovenian border to the west. The area is picturesque and ideal for cycling. The routes take in mountains, foothills, lowlands, 18th & 19th-century castles, sacral architecture all neatly positioned on hills and ridges. The area is full of interesting wooden rural homes which demonstrate the skill of the craftsmen of years gone by. There are routes for both experienced and novice cyclists allowing all riders to experience this fascinating part of Croatia.
Another great cycle route is the round trip from Samobor, which takes cyclists through Bregana, Samoborski Otok, Savršćak, Medsave, Jezero Orešje, Strmec, and Domaslovec. Be sure to have a meal or two in Samobor, as it's renowned in the region as a gourmet destination preserving many local delicacies - including horsemeat.
For a more challenging route head to the Zelin wine growing region, where there are many steep climbs and thrilling descents where bikers are rewarded with gobsmacking views like the Mt Ivanščica lookout. Coupled with a glass of the best wine from the region it's a great way to spend a weekend. This route is around 40km long and aimed at experienced cyclists prepared for a workout. Another excellent wine region great to explore by bike is Plešivica, located in Jastrebarsko, where cyclists can ride the established wine road taking them to 40 wineries in the area, many of which offer tours of their wineries, wine tasting, and meals.