Croatia is best known for its coast and summer pleasures, but it also offers very interesting places for all lovers of mystical legends and scary places.
Throughout its long history, various legends about witches and vampires have emerged, and some places are said to be still haunted by ghosts.
Every lover of mystical stories and legends should definitely visit the following places:
1. Veliki Tabor is a fortress in Hrvatsko Zagorje, located on a hill 334 meters above sea level. It is one of the best-preserved medieval fortresses in Croatia. From a medieval fortress, it was adapted into a castle in the 17th and 18th centuries. The castle is associated with the legend of Veronika Desinicka, who was allegedly killed and walled up in the castle for forbidden love. Veronika was a girl of the people, and her love Frederick was a nobleman. Frederick's father, Count Herman II opposed that love and had the unfortunate Veronika killed and walled up. According to legend, her spirit still wanders the corridors of the castle.
2. The Pag Triangle is a mystical formation in the shape of an isosceles triangle on the Tusto Celo hill, near Novalja on the island of Pag. The triangle was discovered quite by accident by Croatian surveyor Zdenko Grbavac during measurements at the quarry. He noticed a triangular formation that differed in color from the rest of Tusto Celo hill and measured it. He found that the formation was a regular triangle with two sides 32 meters long and a third 22 meters long. After further examination, it was concluded that the properties of this stone are not similar to any other surrounding rock. What made this triangle even more interesting were the 30-centimeter-deep holes on each side of the triangle for which no one could offer an explanation. This discovery attracted a lot of attention from the media, ufologists and visitors.
3. Klek Hill near Ogulin is 1182 meters high and is a favorite place of many mountaineers and lovers of untouched nature, but it is best known for its many legends. The most famous story is that witches meet on Klek, which over time became a symbol of Klek and the town of Ogulin. As early as 1689, the Slovenian travel writer Janez Vajkard Valvasor recorded a legend about Klek as the Witch's Hill, where witches and demons hold their celebrations. In honor of the legend, one of the pits on the hill is called the Witch's Cave.
4. According to legend, after the fall of the Republic of Dubrovnik, the new authorities decided to close the monastery on the island of Lokrum and move the monks. The Benedictines made every effort to stay on the island, which had been their home for centuries, but failed. The last evening they spent on the island, they left the church in their hooded cloaks and surrounded the island three times, holding turned candles in their hands. Their procession lasted all night, wax dripped on the ground, and the monks cursed aloud, "Cursed be everyone who takes possession of Lokrum for their own pleasure!" From that moment on, every future owner of this small island ended tragically.
5. The oldest vampire in European history recorded by name and surname is Jure Grando from the small village of Kringa in central Istria. Jure Grando was a local and was normally buried in the local cemetery after his death in 1656. On the first night after the burial, he got up from the grave, walked around the village and knocked on the doors of houses - where someone would die shortly afterwards. It was like that every night for 16 years. The problem was finally solved when the locals dug up the grave and beheaded him.
6. Grimani-Morosini Castle is the best-preserved castle on the Istrian peninsula and is the largest building in Svetvincenat. As is usually the case, the castle holds many stories and legends. So legend has it that this was the place where the unfortunate Mara Radolovich was burned at the stake, due to an alleged pact with the devil. Mara Radolovich was a resident of Svetvincenat who knew medicinal herbs well and was happy to help her fellow citizens. In 1632, they accused her of being a witch and of making a contract with the devil. The fact that she helped many in the village did not help her, she was still sentenced to death at the stake in the courtyard of the Grimani-Morosini castle. There is also a version of the story that Mara was the secret mistress of a rich nobleman, so she ended up at the stake so that nobody would find out about the relationship.
7. The former Brestovac tuberculosis hospital on Medvednica above Zagreb is today only a ruin, but it holds many stories. The construction of the hospital was initiated by doctor Milivoj Dezman. His great love, actress Ljerka Sram, suffered from tuberculosis. The hospital started operating in 1909. Unfortunately, all the medical care in Brestovac did not help Ljerka Sram - she died in Dezman's arms. The hospital was in operation until 1968, and today only the overgrown ruins of a once very modern medical institution remain. It is said that even today, ghosts roam the ruins, and among them the spirit of Ljerka Sram.
8. The Stone Gate was one of the gates surrounding the historic old town of Gradec in Zagreb. When the great Zagreb fire broke out in 1731, all objects were burned, except for the portrait of the Virgin Mary from the room above the Gate, and it was truly a miracle that is still worshiped today. Today, a miraculous image stands in the passage, and many believers stop and pray in front of it. The walls around the painting are filled with plaques of thanksgiving to the Virgin Mary for answered prayers.