Zagreb

Zagreb is the capital and the largest city of the Republic of Croatia. It is located in the northwest of the country, along the Sava river, at the southern slopes of the Medvednica mountain. Zagreb lies at an elevation of approximately 122 m (400 ft) above sea level. In the last official census of 2011 the population of the City of Zagreb was 792,875. The wider Zagreb metropolitan area includes the City of Zagreb and the separate Zagreb County bringing the total metropolitan area population up to 1,110,517. It is the only metropolitan area in Croatia with a population of over one million. The name "Zagreb" is mentioned for the first time in 1094 at the founding of the Zagreb diocese of Kaptol, and Zagreb became a free royal town in 1242, whereas the origin of the name still remains a mystery in spite of several theories. In 1851 Zagreb had its first mayor, Janko Kamauf, and in 1945 it was made the capital of Croatia when the demographic boom and the urban sprawl made the city as it is known today. Gornji grad, (Upper Town) and Donji grad (Lower Town) are the cultural, religious, and commercial hubs of Zagreb. Most of the restaurants, bars and tourist sights are located there. The Upper Town, which is the medieval nucleus of the city, developed as two separate (and often warring) towns - Kaptol, the seat of the Bishop (where the imposing Cathedral now stands), and Gradec, the free town where tradesmen and artisans lived (proclaimed by King Bela of Hungary in the 12th century) merged in the 1770s to form the northern section of historic Zagreb. Following this, the city expanded south of today's Trg Bana Josipa Jelacica (Jelacic Square) to the railway station and the Sava River. In the summer, the Strossmayerovo šetalište (eng. Strossmayer's walkway) is an outdoor scene for painters, musicians and other artists offering food, drinks, performances and concerts, and a popular meeting place for people of all ages, with a great view of the Lower Town.

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