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Where to stay in Zagreb Croatia: Top areas & hotels

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Heading to Croatia’s capital, and wondering where to stay in Zagreb? We got you covered. Zagreb is one of our favorite cities in Europe. With affordable accommodation, and sightseeing options Zagreb is a fantastic place to explore more of the Balkans – whether it is to venture to Slovenia, mountains, or festivals.

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Top Zagreb Hotels: Where to stay in Zagreb

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Where to stay in Zagreb

Hotel Esplanade

*Best for first timers

*Short city breaks

*Sites within walkable distance

*Luxury suites

*City centre – Lower town

Best Western

*Mid-budget, good value

Best for first timers

*Sites within walkable distance

*Free parking & breakfast

*City centre-Lower town

The 29 Airbnb

*Best value

* Long term accommodation

*Sites within walk-able distance

*Clean, modern space

*City centre – Upper town

Detailed Reviews: Best places to stay in Zagreb Croatia 

Booking.com

The city of Zagreb is pretty compact. Majority of the historic and tourist attractions are located in the city centre area, namely Lower town (neighbourhood of Donji Grad) and Upper town (neighbourhood of Gornji Grad).  

Lower Town is perfect for first time visitors, as well as those visiting on weekend trips. We love Lower Town as there are plenty of attractions and landmarks located nearby, and all within walkable distance. 

Upper Town is home to major heritage sites and restaurants and cafes in the city. This part of the city centre is not densely populated like the Lower Town, but you can easily find some classy hotels to stay here. Due to the plethora of bars and clubs in the neighborhood of Gornji Grad, no wonder this area is perfect for those seeking an active nightlife! 

A part of the Upper town is Kaptol – this is an affordable area to stay in, whether you are visiting for a short city break or looking for long term accommodation. There are apartments, Airbnb and a network of hostels which are great options for budget travelers. 

Little further away from the city center is Novi Zagreb; this is great for business travelers. This neighbourhood has green parks, Communist era buildings, and newer architectural spaces. Love this area due to its quirkiness, and mid value hotels, with modern amenities. 

Jarun is an amazing place for those traveling with kids. The neighborhood is home to a massive artificial lake and is surrounded by parks and areas to play and stay close to natural settings. The only thing to keep in mind is that this area is located about 20 minutes drive away from the lower town, and there are fewer options for restaurants and touristy attractions. 

Where to stay in Zagreb for first timers: Lower Town 

Lower Town is perfect for FIRST TIME travelers, and we really love this neighborhood. Everything is within walkable distance from any type of accommodation you choose to stay in. If you are visiting for the weekend or arriving as a stop-over before heading to Split or Dubrovnik, you must consider staying here to make the most of your trip to Zagreb

It is the city centre, and is densely populated and bustling with activities. Although it is downtown, you will be amazed to know that it is very safe for travelers at all times of the day, and has quick access to tram lines to venture outside of the city. 

With a plethora of shops, restaurants, cafes, and bakeries and prime attractions, Lower Town will keep you mesmerized. 

Best places to stay in Zagreb Lower town

Lower Town Highlights:

  • Bustling city center with lots of attractions
  • Ban Josip Jelačić Square, the central square of Zagreb surrounded by shops and restaurants
  • Grič Tunnel, a World War II bomb shelter displaying art exhibitions
  • Dolac Market, where you will find local vendors selling homemade jams and pickles, and handicrafts

Top Picks: Best Hotels in Lower Zagreb  

Esplanade Zagreb Hotel

Esplanade Zagreb Hotel is a lavish art nouveau-style 5 star hotel. It is a vintage hotel, dating from the 1920s. The hotel complex is very plush with green spaces and manicured flower beds.

Rooms are super luxurious with state of the art infrastructure with sitting areas, flat-screen TVs, mini-bars, and dining. The hotel property also offers free WiFi, and paid breakfast. Many suites have the option of a kitchenette as well. 

Located at the heart of the city center, Esplanade Hotel is great for those who want a luxurious and comfortable stay. It is nice for those embarking on road trips in the Balkans too, as you can opt for parking here (paid). Other amenities on-site include 4 restaurants, a cocktail bar, a health club, and a lavish ballroom. 

Another reason to book this hotel: STUNNING CITY VIEWS from their rooms! 

The Westin Zagreb

Westin needs no introduction. And this property is perfect for families and couples alike. Staying here, you can walk to all of the popular attractions in the city center. The Lotrščak Tower (1.0 km), Zagreb 360 (1.0 km) and Zagreb Muzej Iluzija are located very close to the Westin.

This 4+ star property is furnished with sleek and luxurious amenities from a flat-screen TV, air conditioning, pool, and an on-site restaurant.

Sheraton Zagreb Hotel

Sheraton Zagreb Hotel is a popular 5 star accommodation option located in the heart of the city center – lower town. With amazing on-suite amenities and stunning city views, this is a great hotel to stay in.

Room service is available 24/7, and many suites have a kitchenette, a bar, and a whirlpool tub. From here, you can explore most of the city attractions on foot. Breakfast and wifi are free at the property. There is also a wellness center, gym, a cafe, 2 restaurants on-site. The property is pet friendly and offers paid parking. 

Hotel International Zagreb

Hotel International is a mid budget accommodation option in the Lower Town. Although it is located 20 minutes away from the attractions (20 minutes on foot), this business hotel is a great option to explore the city center as well as enjoy greenery, and eat out at local cafes. 

Hotel International Zagreb lower town

The hotel is great for families, business travelers and couples. If you are renting or traveling by car, you can secure paid parking on site.Guests can also enjoy a sauna, indulge in local delicacies at their restaurant on site. 

Popular landmarks like Zagreb 360, Jelacic Square (Trg Bana Josipa Jelacica), The Well of Life, and Ban Josip Jelacic Monument and Funicular are located not too far from Hotel International. 

Best Western Premier Hotel

This is a no-frills, great value hotel located in the Lower Town. The property dates back to the 1930s and the coolest part of this hotel is FREE breakfast, wifi, and parking. 

Hotel Best Western Premier is located a few minutes away from Ban Jelačić Square and Zagreb Cathedral. The hotel rooms are clean, warm, and inviting. It has flat-screen TVs, sitting areas, minibars, and tea and coffee makers in-suite. 

If you like you can also hang out at the bar/lounge and patio located at the hotel. 

Modern cozy apartment: Airbnb

If you are visiting Zagreb for the long term, then opt for this Airbnb in the city center or the old town. This property is perfect for couples – it is clean, affordable, and comes with a kitchen and utensils. Other amenities like hairdryer, laundry, and wifi, and cable TV.

For nomads and those planning to work, this space is very neat and has a dedicated area for laptops. Keep in mind, the apartment is not huge, but perfect for couples who want quick access to restaurants and attractions. You can also arrange for an airport shuttle/pick up by the host. 

Best places to stay in Upper Zagreb: Nightlife, Historic Sites 

“Gornji Grad” or the “upper town” is home to the prime attractions of Zagreb, from St Mark’s Church, Museum of Broken Relationships to buzzing night clubs – this is where the party comes alive!

As the neighbourhood is located on a hillside, above the Lower Town, accommodation here will welcome you to scenic city views! And who doesn’t love orange-red roof tops – we do!

St Mark's in one day in Zagreb itinerary
St Mark’s

Top highlights in Upper Town:

  • Strossmayerovo šetalište is the route that takes you to the Upper Town. You can also opt for the quickest funicular ride connecting upper and lower towns in the city centre. 
  • The Church of St. Mark is the iconic symbol of Zagreb city. It is  located in St. Mark’s Square, and is one of the oldest architectural monuments
  • The Croatian Museum of Naïve Art is a fine art museum in Zagreb. The museum is dedicated to the work of naïve artists and boasts of over 1,900 works of art – paintings, sculptures, drawings and prints, mainly by Croatians
  • The Museum of Broken Relationships is a quirky little museum in Upper town, located close to the St Mark’s Church where you will find exhibits and tokens of personal love letters, notes, etc donated by travelers. 
  • The Lotrščak Tower is a fortified tower, dating back to the 13th century. 
  • Zagreb City Museum or Museum of the City of Zagreb is home to cultural, artistic, economic and political history of the city. The musume holds over 75,000 items depicting the city’s past through paintings, maps,  flags, military uniforms and coats of arms. 

Top Picks: Best Hotels in Upper Zagreb  

Hotel President Pantovcak Zagreb

Hotel President Pantovcak is a cool 4-star accommodation in Upper Town. Its location is amazing, within walkable distance are the Gothic Zagreb Cathedral and the Museum of Broken Relationships.

Hotel rooms come with modern amenities and furnishings (flat-screen TVs, minifridges and safes). What is special about the hotel rooms is teak terraces or direct garden access for all guests. 

Complimentary breakfast is offered with a trendy restaurant/bar overlooking a garden. 

Timeout Heritage Hotel Zagreb

Timeout Heritage in Upper town is a cute, low budget hotel in the city center. Rooms are perfect for a short stay (or longer if you like as nightly rates are less than $80). Rooms are compact, but clean.

You can eat at their restaurant (breakfast is offered), or venture out as there are tons of cafes and dine-out places located nearby. You won’t regret this central location for sightseeing. 

The 29

The 29 is one of the most sought after Zagreb apartments in Upper town. This is a private suite with everything that you will need for a night’s stay or long term vacationing. 

The property comes with clean, airy bedroom and modern living room space – you will find all the kitchen, laundry and entertainment here. What we love about the 29 is their balcony – you can chill here over coffee or beer, and work or just people watch.

The 29 is located at the heart of downtown, so you will get to be at the center of everything!

Centar Kaptol: Best Places to stay in Zagreb for budget travelers

Kaptol is a great option for budget and long term vacationers. There are tons of hostels and apartments in the vicinity (found on Booking.com as well as on Airbnb). It is the center of the Zagreb city, so you can pretty much find all the attractions within walking distance. 

This is the historical part of the city. Here are the top highlights

Zagreb Cathedral
Zagreb Cathedral
  • Zagreb Cathedral is the tallest building in the whole of Croatia. It is also considered to be the most monumental and holy site as well. The Cathedral is dedicated to the Assumption of Mary and to kings Saint Stephen and Saint Ladislaus. 
  • Right outside the Cathedral is the Monument of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. From here you can embark on walking or biking tours of Zagreb
Kaptol Area

As mentioned, Kaptol is perfect for affordable living, and because it is at the center of everything you can walk from here to the Upper and Lower Town with ease (no car or tram is necessary). Dolac Market is located in front of the Cathedral lane, and there are so many amazing local cafes here. 

From Dolac markets, you will arrive at the main square and can access the train station or hang out at shopping/showrooms and restaurants. 

Dolac One Apartments

Dolac One Apartments is located right next to the Dolac Green Market. From the Cathedral (street called Kaptol) you will find the apartments in the lane opposite to it (no steps needed). Although technically the accommodation is in Upper Town, depending on the direction you arrive from you can access it from Kaptol street.

This property is housed in an art deco building and features a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. There is also a kitchen, fitted with a microwave, toaster, a fridge and stove top. 

Dolac Apartments
Dolac Appartment

There is a private bathroom with a rain shower in each unit. Towels and bed linen are featured. We loved the views of the Dolac Market from our living/kitchen area – so pretty! 

Garden Apartments

Affordable apartment located between Upper Town and Lower Town. The apartment is set for long term stay with modern amenities (especially kitchen, and bedroom furnishings).

Zagreb Where to stay for business travelers:  Novi Zagreb

Novi Zagreb as the name suggests is the newer part of Zagreb. This neighborhood is a cocktail mix of the old and the new – like communist buildings and modern architecture (offices and hotels). 

As a district, Novi Zagreb comprises of many neighborhoods – Dugave, Sopot, Travno, and Utrine. All of the neighborhoods listed here are accessible by tram. The entire district is not popular with tourists, but it is just a few pockets where you will find newer hotels for accommodation and apartments.

Zagreb is not a large city, so from Novi Zagreb istok to the city centre is about 14 minutes by car. Don’t walk as it will take you about 1 hour or more. 

Novi Zagreb Hotels

Best places to stay in Novi Zagreb 

International Business Hotel

Perfect for business travelers, the International Business Hotel is located at an amazing spot. Surrounded by restaurants, shopping malls and the Museum of Contemporary Art, if you plan on staying in this district, choose this hotel. 

Clean and beautiful rooms, the hotel also offers free parking. You can request an airport shuttle and breakfast too. This property is a 4 star hotel, with great value.

Little land of lights

Cute, and a cozy place in Novi Zagreb, this apartment is great for long term stays or those road tripping in the area. The suite is equipped with modern amenities and furniture is clean and rooms are super airy (and cutely decorated).

The apartment offers free parking, and we LOVE the amazing views from the balcony. From here you can soak in the view of the biggest loop in Croatia and see the whole mountain of Medvednica. Pets are allowed here.

Where to stay in Zagreb for families: Jarun 

Jarun is named after the lake, formed by the River Sava in Zagreb. It is located about 20 minutes away from the city centre (by car or take Tram 17). Due to enormous open spaces, nature, and parks this neighborhood is most liked by families traveling with children and pets.

Although you won’t find any iconic monuments here, you can, however enjoy the lake – swimming and sunbathing. The Jarun Lake is the hub of the city’s largest entertainment and outdoor lovers from water and ground sports to night clubs. 

Many of the hotels in the neighbourhood are priced around the low-mid range. 

Best places to stay in Jarun

Jarun Hotel

Jarun Hotel is a 3 star hotel, with standard room furnishings and amenities. The hotel staff is very welcoming and helpful, and rooms are clean and of decent size.

It is not a luxury hotel, and the prices reflect that, but you will definitely feel at home with their hospitality and access to the lake. Complimentary parking is available. The airport is about 30 minutes away. 

Jarun Studio

This Airbnb is perfect for couples looking for a nice little place to stay. With separate entrance and free parking you will feel at home here, for long term stay. Jarun Studio is about 20 minutes away from the lake.

This property offers a clean, relaxing space, without hurting the wallet too much. You can work while on vacation, or just binge watch Netflix on their large LCD TV (on the host!). 

Need more options?

You can browse more apartments and budget accommodation for Zagreb here

Happy travels to Zagreb!

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