Ozalj Castle (Gradina Ozalj)

Ozalj Castle

Croatian castle of Ozalj is a small, but well preserved fortified residence of several noble families. It was constructed in 1244 on a hill overlooking Kupa River.



Location: Ozalj  Map

Constructed: 1244

Official site


Description of Ozalj Castle

Ozalj Castle was jointly owned by two noble families of Zrinksi and Frankopan. Both families were involved in Magnate Conspiracy also known as Zrinski–Frankopan Conspiracy (Zrinsko-frankopanska urota) after family names of their main organizers and leaders. It was a failed attempt (on 30 April 1671) to get rid of Habsburg influence over South Central Europe. Petar Zrinski and Fran Krsto Frankopan were accused of high treason and subsequently executed. Ozalj Castle was assaulted, all its possession were looted. Residence was abandoned for several years.


Ozalj Castle was first mentioned in 1244 as an impressive fortress perched on top of a hill overlooking Kupa river that flows below. Although archeological digs revealed that it was first inhabited in the late Stone Age. Later a Roman fortress was found on top of the strategic hill. Entrance tower that you see today as you enter Ozalj Castle today was constructed in 1577 by George IV Zrinski. In 1743- 53 medieval citadel was reconstructed into a renaissance style palace.


Today Ozalj Fortress is open to the public. Rectangular Tower is the oldest part of the fortress. If you look closely you can find few Glagolitic inscriptions. It is the oldest known Slavic alphabet created by Saint Cyril and his brother Methodius. Later he invented another alphabet (Cyrillic) that is used by many Slavic and other nations. Glagolitic thus was abandoned, but not entirely forgotten judging by the fact that it was still used centuries after Cyril died.


Ozalj Castle contains a library and a Heritage Museum that was originally found in 1971. It contains a large collection of cold and fire weapons, prehistoric artifacts from the archeological digs in the area and several paintings of a famous local painter and a native of Ozalj, Slava Raskaj.