Croatia Captured Showcase

- Old town Ozalj -

Perched majestically on a cliff overlooking the serene Kupa River, the Old Town of Ozalj is a treasure trove of history, culture, and architectural wonders.

Photos taken on March 30th, 2024

Fun fact no 1

Ancient Foundations and Diverse Influence: The Old Town of Ozalj is not just a medieval fortress; it's a site where history spans millennia, from a Neolithic settlement around 4500 BC to Roman influences, where it was named Azelia. Its construction, initiated by the Babonić family in the 2nd or 3rd century, marks the beginning of its transformation, which was later shaped by several noble families, including the Frankopans and Zrinskis. This mix of cultural influences is encapsulated in the architecture and legacy of the town, making it a vibrant tapestry of Croatia's past.

Fun fact no 2

A Castle of Conspiracies and Architectural Wonders: The Old Town has been a silent witness to critical historical events, including the Zrinski–Frankopan conspiracy, which is a pivotal moment in Croatian history. The castle's architecture is a marvel in itself, featuring a wooden bridge that once functioned as a drawbridge, the Babonić tower with its medieval-style toilet, and the Zrinski Palace, which served as home to generations of Zrinskis. These elements not only tell tales of intrigue and drama but also showcase the architectural ingenuity of the era.

Fun fact no 3

A Legacy Preserved by Guardians and Nature: Entrusted to the Brethren of the Croatian Dragon for preservation in 1928 by Count Albert Lamoral Thurn & Taxis, the Old Town of Ozalj stands as a beacon of cultural heritage and architectural preservation. The transformation of its defensive ditch into a beautiful park exemplifies how history and nature have been intertwined to create a serene space where visitors can experience the legacy of the past amidst lush surroundings. This commitment to preservation allows Ozalj to offer a unique glimpse into the past, making it a must-visit for those interested in exploring the depth of Croatian history and architecture.

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Perched majestically on a cliff overlooking the serene Kupa River, the Old Town of Ozalj is a treasure trove of history, culture, and architectural wonders.

This enchanting Croatian landmark serves as a bridge across time, embodying the resilience of past civilizations and the ever-changing tapestry of human history.

The roots of Ozalj stretch deep into the annals of history, from a Neolithic settlement around 4500 BC to the Roman fortress named Azelia. The transformation of this fortress into the majestic Old Town began in the 2nd or 3rd century under the Babonić family's guidance, marking the beginning of a remarkable evolution that would see the castle change hands among some of Croatia's most noble families, including the Frankopans, Zrinskis, Perlas, Batthyanys, and Thurn and Taxis. The castle's walls whisper tales of intrigue, notably during the Zrinski–Frankopan conspiracy, a critical chapter in Croatian history. This event underscores the castle's significance as a seat of power and a focal point of national identity.

The entrance to the Old Town, marked by a wooden bridge leading into the courtyard, sets the stage for a journey back in time. The entrance tower, erected in 1599 by Juraj IV Zrinski, encapsulates the fort's military and historical significance. Within its walls, the Babonić tower and Zrinski Palace reveal a fascinating blend of medieval military architecture and residential elegance.

Notably, the castle's defensive features, including a deep ditch now transformed into a lush park, showcase the ingenious adaptations of medieval architecture to the natural landscape, reflecting a harmonious blend of functionality and beauty.

The stewardship of the Old Town of Ozalj by the Brethren of the Croatian Dragon since 1928 highlights the commitment to preserving this cultural gem. The castle, with its stone construction, remnants of Roman walls, and the iconic Babonić tower, stands as a testament to the layers of history that have shaped this site.

Ozalj is not just a historical site but a gateway to exploring the broader region's natural and cultural heritage. Just a short drive from Zagreb, it offers visitors a unique opportunity to connect with Croatia's rich past and vibrant present. The nearby Tounjčica and Bistrica canyons, along with the opportunity to taste local Tounj cheese, add to the allure of Ozalj as a destination for adventurers and history buffs alike.

In the Old Town of Ozalj, history is alive, inviting travelers to embark on a journey through time. It's a place where the past is palpable, offering a window into the lives of those who shaped this remarkable site. Ozalj stands as a beacon of Croatian heritage, a must-visit for anyone seeking to explore the depth and diversity of this fascinating country.