Rakitje Lakes Near Zagreb are Worth a Visit!

Total Croatia News


One of the hidden gems around the City of Zagreb is the Rakitje lakes, located just to the South-West of the many shopping centres in the Jankomir business district in Zagreb, on the border between the City of Zagreb and Zagreb County.

It’s a large mass of water, connected to the Sava River, where gravel used to be dug extensively in the past, nowadays it’s mostly a fisherman’s, cyclist’s and nature-lover’s retreat several minutes away from the city.

The total surface area of all lakes and surroundings is around 220 hectares, and there are several separate lakes (Finzula, Juš, Votok, Nadolez) interconnected and accessible for walks and bike rides.

The maintenance of the lakes is mostly left to the ŠRD (Sports Fishing Society) Rak Rakitje, and they maintain the conservation of the fish population in the lakes – you buy fishing permits from them, they make sure you obey the catch-and-release rule that is instituted on some of the lakes, etc. The lakes are constantly supervised by the gamekeeper and local warden. The lakes are stocked with all kinds of freshwater cyprinids: mainly common carp, grass carp (white amur), pike, pike–perch (zander) and wels catfish.



When we visited the lakes on May 1st, (bank holiday Monday) we were delighted by the number of people that we saw enjoying a nice day. There were fisherman, obviously, with their tents perched by the lake (from what we understood, you’re allowed to camp right by the lake if you have purchased a valid fishing permit from the ŠRD), there were families who came to the lakes for a picnic, with their grills, footballs, badminton racquets and were playing cards, there were bikers and people just coming for a walk, there were also many birds and fish in the lakes. The atmosphere around the lakes was very lively, relaxed and kind of zen, which is something you appreciate in Croatia, as it is rarely so.

The north-western side of the Rakitje lakes is where Camp Zagreb is situated, opened in 2014, it is a 4* camp with several bungalows, tipi tents and 50 slots for guests with campers, with a wellness centre and a restaurant open for public as well (and supposedly excellent pizza, although that’s not from personal experience).


There are a few more lakes around Rakitje, so if you’re a cyclist looking for a day trip near Zagreb, visiting Rakitje lakes, Orešje Lake, Strmec lakes and seeing the wonderful unspoiled nature of the Sava River on the western outskirts of Zagreb could be a good choice.


PS: The current Croatian record for the biggest carp caught is held by an Austrian gentleman, who caught a 31 kg specimen in Finzula Lake in Rakitje.


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