6 1 Strange Things in Croatia
From the Funnel to the Horseshoe
All countries and nations have strange things and while foreigners find these things unusual, surprising or funny, they might be completely normal for the natives who are, in fact, sometimes even proud of them!
This lens puts a spotlight on some of the strangest things I've seen in Croatia and which I am really amazed at. Bizarre fountains, natural wonders, tongue-twisting words, funny contests: Croatia has a lot to offer when it comes to oddities.
1. Funny Fountains
Being Croatia's most widely known food company, Podravka produces thousands of products from canned food and sausages to instant soups and ice-cream. The company's iconic product is Vegeta, an all-purpose food seasoning which was invented in 1959 and has become very successful all around the world.
This funny spoon fountain stands in front of the Podravka head office in Koprivnica.
Fill the spoon with some Vegeta and you will get a pool of soup!
The FUNnel of Split
It seems the Croats like kitchen utensils in their streets. This funnel can be found at the end of Marmontova, the fancy shopping street of Split. It was designed by a professor of the University of Split, Kazimir Hraste. When it works the water flows from the hand (upper left corner) into the funnel.
2. Do You Speak Croatian?
As a native Hungarian speaker I don't think I have the right to call any other languages difficult (as you probably know, Hungarian is considered to be one of the most difficult languages in the world). All right, Croatian is...er... not too difficult. It's pretty a 'speak as you spell' language which makes life definitely easier. Knowing this you probably won't have difficulties with the pronunciation of such basic words like prtljaznik (luggage rack), vrh (peak), nestrpljivo (impatiently) or Trst (Trieste).
Easy, isn't it?
A challenging tounge-twister
Cvrci cvrci cvrcak na cvoru crne smrce.
3. The Giant Squid!
If I am not mistaken, Croatia is not a lensmaster, still, it has a giant squid!
Isn't that strange?
This squid weighs 8,9 Kgs and it is about 1,5 m long. This amazing video shows you the lucky guy who caught it with his bare hands. He planned to make a soup from the haul so the giant squid of Cavtat is probably eaten by now...
Get Familiar With Giant Squids!
4. The Big Toe which Brings You Luck
The statue of bishop Grgur Ninski in Split is one of the most widely known works of the world-famous Croatian sculptor, Ivan Mestrovic. The 10th-century religious leader fought for the right to say mass in Croatian.
The statue is very popular among the locals who believe that touching its big toe brings them luck.
They all have bought a lottery ticket
5. Goat Beauty Contest
The Croats take fun seriously. A tiny Istrian village, Svetvincenat hosts the annual goat beauty contest where the goats compete with each other in several categories. The milking contest and goat cheese fair make the day even more memorable.
6. Zagreb's Green Horseshoe
Milan Lenuci was the guy who designed Zagreb's horseshoe: a complex of seven squares and green surfaces in the Lower Town. Lenuci's Horseshoe includes Nikola Subic Zrinski square, Strossmayer square, King Tomislav square, the Botanical Garden, Marulic square, Mazuranic square and Tito Marshal square.
Botanical Garden in Zagreb
Zrinjevac - another horseshoe nail
+1. Croatia's Skyscraper
This 16-storey skyscraper or as the locals call it, Neboder was built at the end of the 1950s. Yes, you've got it right: this skyscraper has only SIXTEEN floors! At the time of its construction this was the tallest building not only in the city, but also in the former Yugoslavia.