King Tomislav Square and Glavni Kolodvor, Zagreb
King Tomislav Square and Main Station, Zagreb
Trg Kralja Tomislava and Glavni Kolodvor, Zagreb
See also: FAM (Familiarization) tour of Croatia
“A fast approach by plane robs the journey of anticipation; a slow approach by road always begins with the hope of a pleasant trip, and continues with the hope of simply reaching the destination.”
Stones of Silence, George Schaler
I was definitely robed the journey of anticipation as I reached Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, by plane. Had I have travelled by train I would have been welcomed by the grand main station in Zagreb, known as the Glavni Kolodvor.
Glavni Kolodvor, was constructed in 1892 by Hungarian architect Ferenc Pfaff, something of a specialist when it came to railway stations.
The 186.5 meter long building is an interesting mix of Renaissance and Neo – classical architecture and once the luxurious Orient Express passed through the Glavni Kolodvor.
Today the main station is located at the southern end of the King Tomislav Square (Trg Kralja Tomislava), which is part of the famous Lenuci Horseshoe, a U – shaped belt of squares and parks designed by engineer Milan Lenuci, in the late 19th century.
Every visitor visiting Zagreb by train is greeted by a horse mounted statue of King Tomislav, the first Croatian king. Tomislav united all the Croatian land into one country and was crowned the king in 925 AD, after papal recognition.
The horse mounted statue of King Tomislav was completed by sculptor Robert Frangeš-Mihanović in 1938, but was installed in the current location only in 1947, after the completion of World War II.
To the left is the iconic Hotel Esplanade, Zagreb, built for the passengers of famous Orient Express. Although I missed out the opportunity of arriving at Zagreb on train but I did had the opportunity of staying in the iconic Esplanade Hotel.
On the corner of the King Tomislav Square stands a domed building crowned with a golden coloured angle, holding a torch.
King Tomislav Square is the south – eastern square of the Lenuci Horseshoe. Its a large open square with fountains and flower beds and tree lined walkways.
On the norther end of King Tomislav Square stands the famous Art Pavilion of Zagreb.
The butter – yellow coloured Art Pavilion, with its glass dome is one of Zagreb’s most iconic building. It is the first custom built art pavilion in South Eastern Europe.
Strangely the Zagreb Art Pavilion was once located in Budapest in neighboring Hungary. It was removed piece by piece and was reconstructed on the King Tomisalav Squre, Zagreb in 1897 – 98.
The Art Pavilion, with a display area of 600 square meter, does not have any permanent display.
It specializes in showcasing the art works of a single or a group of artist representing a particular period, style or theme.
Till date 700+ exhibitions have been held at the Art Pavilion, Zagreb and works of leading artists from around the world have been exhibited.
The Glavni Kolodvor is an important station in the European rail circuit and is busy 24 X 7.
The station is also well connected with the rest of Zagreb and just infront of the station is the tram stop for Zagreb’s iconic Blue Trams.
There are a couple of make shifts stall selling souvenir and artifacts and the open street artists make full use of the open space in front of Zagreb’s main station.
The place remains busy throughout day and night. The Glavani Kolodvor (Main Railway Station) is lit up during the night and and offers a grand spectacle and should not be missed by visitors visiting Zagreb.