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Snuggling against the eastern flanks of the wooded Samobor uplands, the market town of Samobor is a popular day-trip destination from Zagreb – especially on Sundays, when the pavement cafes are packed with visitors.

What makes the place so popular is its idyllic small-town ambience, with a low-rise centre of nineteenth-century houses overlooked by a lemon-yellow parish church. Main activities include taking a stroll through the riverbank park, or settling down on the main square to enjoy a Samoborska kremšnita or Samobor Cream Slice - a rich cream-and-custard pastry served in almost all the central cafes.

There’s a small Town Museum which, like most small museums, contains a bit of everything, from geology through archeology to nineteenth-century furniture and paintings. The museum preserves the nineteenth-century atmosphere of the original collection, begun by musician., antiquarian and leading-light in the patriotic Illyrian movement, Ferdo Wiesner Livadić (1799-1879).

The path from the museum along the banks of the river Gradna makes for an exceedingly pleasant stroll; trails lead uphill from here towards the stark ruins of Samobor’s thirteenth-century castle.

Samobor is a popular base-camp for hikers, with trails leading up into the local wooded park Anindol and nearby peaks Oštrc, Japetić and Okić.

Practical Info Practical Info icon

There’s a tourist information centre on the main Trg Kralja Tomislava

Getting there

By car: Samobor is a straightforward 30-minute drive northwest of Zagreb

By bus: Buses leave Zagreb’s main bus station for Samobor every 40-60min.

Gabreku 1929, Samobor

Meat, mushrooms and more (l,d; €€)

Philipecz, Samobor

Culinary curiosities

Slastičarna U Prolazu, Samobor

Creamcake heaven

Text © Jonathan Bousfield

Image by Grad Samobor