A look at museums in Croatia. Did you know Zagreb has more museums per capita than anywhere, or that Croatia has its own Museum Night?
- Introduction to Museums in Croatia
- Museums in Croatia Exporting to the World
- 10 Most Popular Museums in Croatia (Visitors)
- 10 Most Reviewed Museums in Croatia (TripAdvisor)
- Museum Night
- Museums in Istria
- Museums on the Coast (Northern Adriatic)
- Museums in Dubrovnik
- Museums in Zagreb
- Museums in Slavonia
- Museums in Northern Croatia
- Museums in Karlovac – Sisak
- Museums in Lika
More people visited Croatia’s museums in 2017 than live in the country. According to the Ministry of Culture, some 4,662,111 people visited the 160 officially recognised museums in Croatia. There are actually more museums than this, but this is the official number in the official Museum Registry.
Croatia’s distinguished museum history dates back to the 16th century and the first private collections. These were initially mostly centred on the coast, moving inland later.
The first Lapidarium was created in Split in 1510, and it was followed by exhibitions of old coins and natural rarities. In 1750, a small archaeological museum opened in a private house in Zadar, before which a small private museum was constructed before burning down in 1706.
The Archaeological Museum in Split opened in 1818, and it is regarded as the first proper museum in Croatia. The People’s Museum in Zagreb was established by the parliament in 1836, but the authorities in Vienna only approved the decision 30 years later.
In 1834, first excavations began in Solin, which marked the beginning of systematic collection and protection of cultural monuments in Croatia.
Croatia’s museum has grown considerably, from commemorating the tragedy of war and the country’s rich heritage and history, to the more bizarre cultural offerings. Among my favourites is Froggyland in Split, a collection of stuffed frogs from a century ago in human life situations. And of course, the two stars of the modern Croatian museum scene – the Museums of Broken Relationships and Illusions.
Learn more about some of the unique museums in Croatia.
Two of Croatia’s most successful and unique) museum concepts are starting to go global.
And if you are in the market for one Croatian museum franchise, why not another? The Zagreb museum which has attracted the most column inches since it opened, the Museum of Broken Relationships, is also going international, opening its first international franchise in Los Angeles in 2016.
Which are the most popular museums in Croatia in terms of visitors? Official statistics for 2017 has the top ten:
Interestingly, with two in Vukovar and one in Krapina, it shows that people will travel away from the top hot spots.
A very nice cultural tradition has taken place each year in the winter in Croatia since 2005 – Museum night. Museums in Croatia open their doors with special exhibitions on the same night, and entrance is free. First organised with just six museums in Zagreb, the event has been wildly popular, and more than 200 museums all over the country participate. You can find out where, and what is on next year on the official website.
Here is a list of museums in Croatia, arranged by region. If there is a museum missing, please email [email protected] and we will add it.
Novigrad Museum, Novigrad
Permanent Exhibition of Sacral Art, Zadar
Imotski Regional Museum, Imotski
Ivan Meštrović Museum, Otavice
Obrovac Regional Museum, Obrovac
PBZ Bank Museum
Ethnographic Collection of Rusyns and Ukrainians in Croatia, Petrovci
Stari Slatinik Regional Collection
Podravka Food Museum, Koprivnica
For the latest news from the world of museums in Croatia, follow the TCN dedicated page.