In the Upper Town, Tkalčićeva is throbbing with bars and cafes. With half a dozen bars and sidewalk cafes between Trg Petra Preradovića (known locally as Cvjetni trg) and Bogovićeva in the Lower Town, the scene on summer nights resembles a vast outdoor party. Things wind down by midnight, though, and get quieter from mid-July through late August.
Rumours of Croatia’s first Starbucks died a quick death. That's because Starbucks would never stand a chance at competing with špica, the very local Zagreb tradition of sipping coffee in the town centre between 11am and 2pm on Saturday, before or after a run at the Dolac Market. This showdown of latest fashions, mobile phones and gossip has people rushing for prime sidewalk tables along Bogovićeva, Preradovićeva and Tkalčićeva. It’s a great way to experience Zagreb in its liveliest incarnation.
In terms of nightclubs, admittedly Zagreb doesn’t register high on the scale, but it does have an ever-developing art and music scene, and a growing influx of fun-seeking travellers. Nightclub entry ranges from 20KN to 100KN, depending on the evening and the event. Clubs open around 10pm but most people show up around midnight. Many clubs are open only from Thursday to Saturday.
Craft Beer Hotspots
Zagreb's craft beer scene is heating up with several places now devoted to both local and global craft brews. For an easy bar-hop, head to Opatovina. This street is home to a whole clutch of bars that serve a fine range of craft beer brands.
Some of our favourite bars in town for getting stuck into the scene are:
Craft Room The central Opatovina location plus the solid range of craft beer (local on tap, with plenty of global offerings too) make this the number one stop for getting acquainted with Croatia's brews.
Garden Brewery In Zagreb's industrial east, this boutique brewery and bar offers up their own craft beer. Try the Kettle Sour for its fruity flavours or the Session Ale with floral overtones. On Saturdays there's live music and Sundays are family-friendly.
Hop Inn It's all about local craft beer at this small, laid-back bar on the edge of the central city (a two-minute walk from the bus station). Get stuck into Zagreb labels such as Nova Runda, Zmajsko and the Garden Brewery.
Pivnica Medvedgrad There's five house beers to try, including a classic weizenbier and a hoppy lager at this bustling bar. Their sister pub Pivnica Mali Medo is in prime position, along the main Tkalčićeva pedestrian strip and serves up the same beer menu.