The Town of Ozalj

About Ozalj

"Yes, says the soul, this place is sacred!" - wrote August Šenoa, inspired and mesmerized by the proud Old Town, the symbol of Ozalj and the foundation of its historical development.

Ozalj, a small town situated at the junction where the Kupa River flows from the hills into the plains, was founded between wooded hills and the emerald river. The Zrinski-Frankopan Old Town, the symbol of Ozalj and the centre of its historical growth, stands proudly on the limestone, above the tranquil, clear Kupa River. The spirit of the Zrinski-Frankopan legacy floats above it, symbolizing the ancient source of Croatian survival and independence. Pre-historical, old-Roman and mediaeval archaeological finds have been excavated in the vicinity of the walls, but also within them. However, the first historical records of the town originate from 1244 AD. The most powerful feudal families were the owners of the town: Babonić, Frankopan, Zrinski. In the 17th century Ozalj experienced its most glorified period by becoming an unofficial Croatian capital – Viceroy (ban) Petar Zrinski ruled from it, while the Ozalj literary-linguistic circle “ruled” the cultural life.

With the tragic execution by beheading of Viceroy Petar Zrinski and Count Fran Krsto Frankopan in 1671, the town's prosperity ended abruptly. In the 18th century, it was thoroughly reconstructed by new owners, Perlas and Batthyani, who changed its mostly gothic appearance into the today's baroque one. Due to its great value, the Old Town of Ozalj belongs to the first monumental category.