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subota, 6. kolovoza 2011.

Lake Jarun And Lake Bundek - Zagreb's 2 Little Known Hotspot Getaways

This one is kind of interesting. A short introduction about 2 little known lakes (outside of Croatia that is) that are located in the capital city of Zagreb in Croatia. These 2 lakes have been extremely popular with Zagreb residents for decades in the autumn and winter months as well as the popular hot summer months. Not many people outside of Croatia have heard of these man-made lakes that are located right in the middle of a bustling European city.

I think it's a great idea that they came up with. A place to cool off, bbq, take a dip in the clean water and relax on those days when the traffic and noise of the city is at it's busiest. Also, a place for people to go and enjoy the beach-like atmosphere when they can't take off to the Adriatic coast or other places for a spell. Lake Jarun is also home to the highly popular Inmusic festival, one of the Top 10 music festivals in Europe. I didn't get a chance to check either one out last time because of my hectic schedule, but it's on my list. Here's just a brief description.

*(I actually was able to check out Lake Jarun on my last full day in Zagreb in 2011, it's located not far from the Arena Centar mall and Arena Zagreb just across the river and Jadranska Avenija. It was still pretty hot that day too but the water was clean, refreshing and it was a relaxing few hours to end my last full vacation day, highly recommend)

Lake Bundek (Bundek Jezero)


Peaceful and tranquil, this body of water has a magic appeal to human beings trapped in the city. Located in Novi Zagreb (New Zagreb), on the southern bank of the Sava river, this place used to be one of favourite bathing places in Zagreb in the 60-s and 70-s. During the 80-s and 90-s people kinda forgot about it and it turned into a swamp and a thicket, almost small jungle in the city centre. Luckily, the whole place was rediscovered and refurbished in 2005 and has ever since become a favourite location for pleasant festivals and relaxing events, or just spending an afternoon chilling and BBQ-ing.

For the sportsmen types, there’s a running/cycling track, a fishing pond and a beach volleyball court. When the sun sets, its BBQ-time. In the grove around the lake, you can find wooden gazebos and nearby BBQs, use of which is free of charge, you just need to get there in time and claim your spot. You can even rent a grill (however only on Saturdays and Sundays, and they have to be returned by 19:00) for free, bring your own or ask someone to use theirs.

In the middle of the lake, there is a floating platform for bands and performers. Each year there is a FloraArt flower festival in May and a four-day Summer fireworks festival in June – when you get to listen to Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra in open air and later lie on the grass, watch fireworks and nibble on delicatessen from the nearby fair.

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Lake Jarun (Jarunsko Jezero)


Jarun (pronounced Ya-roon) is a neighborhood in the southwestern part of Zagreb, Croatia. It was named after Lake Jarun, formed by the Sava River, now located on the southern edge of the neighborhood.


The lake is the location of the Jarun sports and leisure center, where people can row, paddle, sail, surf, swim, jog, bike, roller skate, and skateboard. Around the lake are many nightclubs and cafes.


The area covered by the local city council Jarun has around 13,300 inhabitants.

The development of Jarun began at the end of the 1970s when it was merely a village, with the building of apartment blocks. Development increased in 1987 due to the building of the sports and leisure center (because of the Universiade in Zagreb the same year). It is currently a middle-class neighborhood with a very low crime rate.

A scene from the annual INmusic festival which takes place at Lake Jarun

An image from the 2005 Beach Volleyball Men's Open on the shores of Lake Jarun in Zagreb. Source:

The borders of Jarun are Horvaćanska Street to the north with Staglišće, Hrvatski Sokol Street with Vrbani to the west, Vrapčak Creek with Gredice to the east, and the Sava River and Jadranska Avenija to the south. Jarun, in the wider sense, also includes the neighborhoods of Staglišće and Gredice.


Built as the rowing lake for a university sports competition in the '80s, Jarun is now a multi-function recreational resort for the people of Zagreb, and is apparently hugely popular. The rock and pebbled beaches look fairly appealing next to the man-made lakes, and we heard that on hot days in summer half the city make their way here to cool off in the water, mingle and socialise. The lakes are surrounded by cafes, bars and restaurants (some quite classy-looking, others simple snack bars), which transform into nightclubs and concert venues on busy summer evenings. We visited on a chilly March afternoon and found it still had its attractions, offering a pleasant stroll around the lake and a warming coffee in one of several cafes making an early start to the season (and sensibly providing blankets for those sitting outside to enjoy the views). It was nice and peaceful with only the occasional jogger or fellow-stroller - quite a difference from the summer no doubt.

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