Saint Mark's Church and Square, Zagreb

Saint Mark's Church and Square, Zagreb (must see)

It is claimed by some that Saint Mark's Church in Saint Mark's Square is the oldest architectural monument in Zagreb. The evidence says maybe so or maybe not. The distinctly Romanesque window on the south facade strongly suggests the 13th century. Saint Mary's Chapel has a semicircular ground plan that indicates the same.

Here's the spoiler. In the 14th century, the church was rebuilt. It became a plain, three-nave Gothic church, ergo, not so old. The ribbed vaults are supported by stout columns. The intricately sculpted south portal has 15 figures of the Holy Family, Saint Mark, and the Apostles in niches. It is the richest Gothic portal in Central Europe.

The roof tiles, laid in 1880 by architects Friedrich von Schmidt and Herman Bolle, bear the coats of arms of Zagreb and the Triune Kingdom of Croatia. Inside are sculptures by artists Ivan Mestrovic, Jozo Kljakovic, and Ljubo Babic. There are renovated frescoes and a gilded 22-carat gold leaf ceiling.

Saint Mark's Church is in the center of Saint Mark's Square. Surrounding the square are the Banski Dvori (Ban's Court) seat of the government of Croatia, the Parliament, and the Constitutional Court of Croatia. The Old City Hall, on the corner of the square and Ciril and Metod Streets, is where the City Council meets.

The Saint Mark's Square was renovated in 2006. The ban on demonstrations in the square was lifted a bit in 2012. Until 2020 it was the site of the inaugurations of Croatian presidents. In 2020 Zoran Milanovic took his oath in the Presidential Palace.

The 2020 shooting, or the Saint Mark's Square attack, was the work of Danijel Bezuk, a 22-year-old, self-styled right wing sniper. Bezuk attacked a police officer at the Constitutional Court using an AK-74 automatic rifle. Police in the square returned fire. Bezuk fled to Jabukovak Street, where he took his own life.

Saint Mark's Square was still closed off as of 2023. Its closure has had a negative economic impact on the neighborhood. There is hope for better days.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Zagreb. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Saint Mark's Church and Square on Map

Sight Name: Saint Mark's Church and Square
Sight Location: Zagreb, Croatia (See walking tours in Zagreb)
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Zagreb, Croatia

Create Your Own Walk in Zagreb

Create Your Own Walk in Zagreb

Creating your own self-guided walk in Zagreb is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Lower Town Walking Tour

Lower Town Walking Tour

The Lower Town of Zagreb, also known as Donji Grad, is one of the two main districts in the historic heart of the Croatian capital, alongside the Upper Town (Gornji Grad). It is the more modern of the two and was built during the period of urban expansion, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The Lower Town showcases a captivating tapestry of architectural splendor dominated by...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.5 Km or 1.6 Miles
Upper Town Walking Tour

Upper Town Walking Tour

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Upper Town centered around Zagreb Cathedral consecrated in...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles