We all have favourite spots in a city. A secluded corner, a reading bench, a vista. It’s a place which we flock to like a bee to the nectar.
It’s a serene uphill meadow, hidden behind the bustling British square. You can’t see it from down below, you have to know it’s there.
But Rokov perivoj is much more than a meadow or a park. It’s a unique architectural achievement that combines early 20TH.世纪别墅和受保护的自然美。
And that’s not all. It also tells a story of how Zagreb transformed from a provincial town into a modernist Central-European capital.
I fell in love with Rokov perivoj before knowing its complex history.
One day a friend took me there to have a quiet conversation. Ever since then, I’ve been coming back in search of peace and quiet, inspiration or a good stroll.
Then much later I found out my favourite spot is a former cemetery. Is that what gives Rokov perivoj its poetic melancholy charm?
今天，Rokov Herivoj最沉闷的地方是曾经是雕塑家之家的登记屋Vojin Bakic。
Seeing it will make you weep. Its old glory shines through crumbling walls, broken windows and piles of rubbish in the courtyard. Zagreb city council planned to refurbish it into a memorial centre. But legal quarrels over its ownership put a stop to the project.
Two centuries ago, this was the route a horse-drawn hearse took on the way to the cemetery. And in winter time, when the street was slippery, horses gave up half-way up and people took over carrying a coffin.
When you reach the clearing, you’ll see St. Rocco’s chapel to your right.
It was built in 1648, after a disastrous plague had killed all but those walled up inside the city. The chapel was an act of gratitude for sparing (the wealthy) citizens of Gradec.
(At that time Zagreb consisted of the secular town Gradec and the church town Kaptol).
Shortly afterwards, the burials around the chapel began. Even the Jewish community had a burial lot. This made Rokov perivoj the first Jewish cemetery in Zagreb.
During that time Rokov perivoj was an uncultivated outskirts of Gradec where peasants farmed land and kept kettle.
除了承诺人的居住（Rokova 15）和Morgue（Rokova 10，VojinBakić的房子），没有房屋。
The modernist turn in Rokov perivoj
At the turn of the 20TH.然而，世纪，第一个城市别墅出现的地方，将Rokov Herivoj转向萨格勒布的“山寨邻里”。
Two events preceded this radical transformation.
First, the cemetery closed down in 1877 (after Mirogoj became the city’s main burial ground). And second, industrialism created a rich bourgeois class looking to build urban villas.
Under the artistic influences of modernism, green spaces would get cultivated. And for the first time associated with prestige rather than with peasantry.
Rokov Herivoj Villas：ViktorKovačić独特的现代主义设计
1909年，很赞誉克罗地亚建筑师ViktorKovačić.designed a blueprint that transformed the cemetery into a residential area.
Kovačić’s vision consisted of three elements. Designing urban villas, landscaping the park and connecting Rokov perivoj to Dežmanova and Ilica streets with staircases.
The area of urban villas begin after you pass St. Rocco’s chapel. They were part of the original Kovačić’s plan, though several other architects (Hugo Erlich and Milan Lenuci) later joined the project.
Local authorities gave the land to established artists. In return, they would donate their work to the city.
These artists changed Rokov perivoj’s somber provincial character into that of a vibrant social hub. The houses still bear their names.
- Villa Frangeš (number 2, sculptorRobert Frangeš Mihanović）
- Villa Babić (number 5, painterLjubo Babić）
- Villa Auer（1号，画家Robert Auer）
- Villa Rojc（6号，画家Nasta Rojc）
- Villa Kljaković (number 4, painterJozo Kljaković）
When Frangeš revealed the naked Elegy in 1912, the city authorities refused to exhibit it.
The old beauty is here now, so admire it!
Aleksandar楼梯 - 从Rokov Perivoj开始
At the end of the green space of Rokov perivoj there is a staircase leading down to Dežmanova street.虽然Kovačić计划在剩下的城市连接这个富裕的地区，但只有1935年，亚历大省楼梯只有这一城市。
It’s a unique work of architecture that organically blends with surrounding nature.
Writers of Tuškanac – Krleža
Aleksandar staircase leads to the beginning of Tuškanac forest. Following the trail uphill takes you to the statue of the famous Croatian writerMiroslav Krleža。It was erected in 2004 to mark the 30TH.anniversary of his death.
The writer and his actress wife Bela lived in the villa Rein up the hill on the left-hand side (Krležin Gvozd 23).
Villa Rein was commissioned by the banker Adolf Rein in 1928. It is one of the finest examples of rich urban houses from the period between the two world wars.
Tuškanac - 纳粹主的作家
This is one of the most beautiful green spaces in Zagreb. It’s still quite wild and surprisingly empty.
The park is also known asVladimir Nazorpark, after another famous Croatian writer whose statue dominates the entrance.
Nazor’s statue is work of sculptor Stjepan Gračan. It was revealed in 1972 to celebrate the 30TH.anniversary of Nazor joining the Partisans.
The statue is 3,5 metres high, portraying Nazor in an elongated expressionist style. Monumental and slightly somber, it blends in with the environment by rising directly from the lawn.
Zagreb abounds with fantastic sculptures of writers. You can track them all down in this post:
And now just walk
The walk takes your through trodden paths until the end of the park and then meanders off.
There is nothing but nature until you reach Zelengaj street. This is your way back to the British square through another affluent and green area.
Treat yourself to a nice cup of coffee at one of two excellent cafes at the square: Kava tava or Mali kafe.
到那时，您将更多地了解Zagreb Artsy Hills的普通本地普通景观！
Did you enjoy uncovering the non-touristy Zagreb?
If so, then check out plenty of other unique things to do in Zagreb. Use my ultimate guide.