Zagreb County as It Once Was: Celebrating Patron Saints in 1930 (VIDEO)

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When it comes to upholding traditions, I have never come across anywhere as diverse as Croatia. 

It took me a while to realise, but seemingly every village has its own traditions, its own patron saint, and even many have their own traditional costume. 

The celebration of the patron saint of the village is an eagerly-anticipated affair, and I always found it heartwarming to see these celebrations taking place in each and every village on the island of Hvar when I lived there – many of them in winter. 

Upon deeper investigation, I was surprised too by the sheer variety of traditional costumes all over the country, each helping to define and give personality to the community.  

As Croatia looks to reorient its tourism after the pandemic, these authentic experiences are jewels to build on, an area of Croatian tourism which should be developed and promoted a lot more in my opinion. 

And a lot of these traditions have changed little over the centuries, including the music and song that accompanies them. Check out this delightful footage of Zagreb County almost a century ago, where the villagers are celebrating the local patron saint on May 17. 

The authentic nature of village life in places like Zagreb county still exists today, and these local celebrations are wonderful windows into the traditional way of life here.

It is authentic village life which is very accessible on a day trip from Zagreb, made even more so by the new platform, Around Zagreb, which was launched last year by the city and county tourist boards. And if you are looking to catch one of these villages on its special day, the tourist board should be able to help with some options. 

For more on travel in Croatia, follow the TCN Travel section


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