With the lighting of the first Advent candle throughout Zagreb County, a series of events began, and we bring you part of the holiday magic of the green Zagreb ring in anticipation of the most joyous Christian holiday, Christmas.
Just as the green ring of Zagreb is a region rich in nature and culture, Christmas events in Zagreb County are attractive, colourful and exceptional. Of course, during the holiday season, everything still rests on good old customs and folk heritage, combined with modern entertainment programs for all ages. The Zagreb area is ideal if you want a more peaceful and pleasant Advent mingling in direct contact with living tradition. The holiday celebrations here are lavish enough to amaze us, but always with the right measure of modesty and dignity so as not to lose the true spirit of Christmas. From Prigorje, Moslavina and Turopolje, through the Jaska and Samobor-Žumberak region, to the Sutla valleys and hills, every place wants to present itself in distinctive holiday attire, spreading light, warmth and good mood.
In celebration of the holiday season, various towns around Zagreb showcase their cultural heritage and traditional decorations through abundant lighting and imaginative displays. Workshops for creating holiday decor and cookies add to the festive atmosphere. For instance, visitors to the Native Museum in Donja Kupčina can learn about making Christmas decorations using crepe paper, clay, dough and wool. At the same time, those in Samobor can explore the meaning of a Kinch. Alongside the unique decorations, visitors can purchase local souvenirs and authentic products from numerous holiday fairs, such as the Castle under Candles fair at the picturesque Lužnica Castle near Zaprešić. Other towns, including Jaska, Ivanić-Grad, Vrbovec, Pisarovina, and Marija Gorica, also host colourful fairs that offer live nativity and nativity scene workshops.
Sunday is the most anticipated day of the week. Families gather to light the new Advent candle and enjoy Christmas music, winter dishes, and mulled wine. Local festivals feature various music and spiritual themes, including theatre plays, exhibitions, performances by cultural and artistic societies and choirs, and live performances by famous musicians. Dugo Selo offers Advent in the cellar, Winter concerts in Sveta Nedelja, and the Miraculous Forest in Sveti Ivan Zelina. In Križ, they hold a Christmas concert to honour their famous local, the opera diva Milka Trnina. In Velika Gorica, the celebration culminates in mid-December, coinciding with the Day of the City and the feast of St. Lucia. A specific custom is held at the Lukavec castle - the St. Lucia spravisce.
The holiday season in Zagreb County is full of fun activities for people of all ages. There are open ice rinks for the young ones in Samobor, Velika Gorica, Zaprešić, Jastrebarsko, Vrbovec, and Sveta Nedelja. In Zelina, Santa Claus arrives on a motorcycle, which is quite impressive. On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, families celebrate and attend midnight mass in local churches. For a more peaceful celebration, one can visit the chapel of St. Jurja on Tepec Hill above Samobor or one of the unique wooden chapels in Turopolje. As the year ends, people celebrate the New Year by organising children's parties at noon, which has become a tradition in many places. In the evening, the main squares are transformed into festive party spots, open to everyone. The celebration continues until the Feast of the Holy Three Kings. The Advent calendar of Zagreb County offers a wide range of activities for everyone to enjoy a memorable holiday season.