Varaždin – jewel of Baroque

Varaždin – jewel of Baroque Photo: MariaK /

Breathtaking baroque City of Varaždin is located in North Croatia, along the Drava River. Its baroque architecture, the castle in the Old Town and many other beauties of the city simply entices you to visit, especially during the two most important events: Špancirfest (August) and Baroque Evenings (end of September - early October).

Varaždin is one of the oldest towns in Croatia. Its historical name Garestin was first mentioned in 1181, and in 1209 it acquired the status of a free royal city. In 1776 almost the whole city was destroyed by a catastrophic fire.

What makes Varaždin special is its great monuments, historic and artistic heritage with the best preserved and richest urban complex in continental Croatia. With the Old Town and the City Hall, there is also the unique horticultural complex of the City Cemetery, protected as a natural monument. Construction of the baroque churches and monasteries will significantly contribute to the urban image of Varazdin, which will remain preserved as such until today.

It is believed that Old Town was built in early 12th century. In the 16th century it was reconstructed from late Gothic fortress into a modern Renaissance fortification called "Wasserburg". In the Old Town is today located Varazdin City Museum.

In the historic center of Varazdin there is a series of palaces from the Baroque era: the Palace Herczer was built after the disastrous fire in 1791, the Palace Patacic was completed in 1764; the Palace Sermage was built in 1684 and is one of the most interesting palaces of the 17th century.

One place out of the City is worth visiting: Varazdin spa. It is the oldest thermal spa in Croatia. In its center is located one of the most important continental archaeological complexes, ruins of Roman thermal spa. Health tourism in Varazdinske Spa began nearly 185 years ago. Today the spa is an appreciated thermal riviera with various health and recreational programmes.

If you are interested in exploring Varazdin, please send us your inquiry to


Interesting Facts

Did you know that Croatian National Theatre in Varazdin was built according to the designs of Viennese architects Fellner and Helmer, the famous builder of theaters in Central Europe. And the renaissance restoration of the Old Town was led by the famous Italian architect Domenico dell'Allio in the 16th century.

  • Varazdin was Croatia’s capital from 1767 till 1776
  • City Hall is one of the oldest in Europe
  • The City Cemetery - a natural monument
  • Guild signs called 'cimeri' - key part of Varazdin’s identity
  • 'The Path of Angels’ - unique tour of the City
  • Richness of sacral architecture: 11 churches, 3 monasteries and a cathedral
  • 'The Purgars’ - the City Guard of Varazdin
  • Entomological Collection ‘World of Insects’ - unique European exhibition
  • The statue of bishop Grgur Ninski made by world-known Croatian sculptor Ivan Meštrović
  • The city's infrastructure and facilities are accessible to persons with disabilities

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