Updated: Jun 14
Hello from Zagreb, a low-key city set against low-slung hills, which apparently inspired the name Zagreb; apparently meaning behind the hill. The city reminds me of Bratislava in its look and feel. It is a mix of Communist buildings, older historic towers with onion domes, red tile roofs and neo-Baroque style. Both cities seemed carved out of the same Habsburg Empire blueprint with a dash of socialism. Even weirder, for me, the main street in front of my hotel is pretty much the same as the one down the down block from my apartment in Bratislava, complete with small stores and a tram line down the middle.
People-wise, Zagreb is friendly and folks are out and about in small groups meeting their friends for coffee at the many outdoor cafes. Well, why not make things festive. Like Slovakia/Poland, a glass of beer can be a breakfast drink here if you are in the mood or feeling the party music at the cafe. Weather-wise, a bit chilly and rainy, which is a nice change of pace from California. Overall, Zagreb has a relaxed, quiet vibe, perhaps because of the pandemic or being offseason or the weekend or the weather, or all of the above. But a nice compact city to amble about in the twisty streets and central produce market and scout for good coffee or beer spots.