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Drava cycling route

Cycling map and description of the route

Podravje Varaždinska županija Međimurska županija 1:75000


Drava Cycling Route

Mura-Drava.bike – cycling route

Cycling along the Drava River is something really special. Cycling route along the Drava River, which has an international mark R1, is one of the most beautiful cycling routes in Europe because of its natural attractions and cultural diversity. Let the Drava River accompany you during cycling most of the way from its spring in Italy, through Austrian Carinthia to Slovenia and Croatia. It combines cycling through untouched nature and urban settlements. Along this magnificent river the oldest Slovenian town Ptuj was built and the banks of the river represent one of the liveliest parts of Maribor, while former capital of Croatia Varaždin on the other hand, is memorable mostly because of its rich history and preserved baroque buildings, while the town of Čakovec is a people-friendly city. Also the smaller towns, which the river is passing on its winding path, attract with numerous interesting sights with the final point of the route being the settlement Legrad.

Mura-Drava.bike – non-asphalt cycling route

You will have an opportunity to see many different museums, churches, castles and experience many traditional celebrations which represent old traditions which will not be forgotten in this area. Because of the rich biodiversity many natural parks can be found along the Drava River, where numerous plants and animals can be seen. You should stop at the slope of the forests, glades and banks where you will get the feeling of magic peace.

Natural sights

You can see many cultural and natural attractions near the cycling route and refresh with local food and a glass of wine from vineyards which you were passing by during cycling. You should stop in one of the spa and relax for a day or two.

Restaurant

The route runs along settled cycling routes and less traffic local roads and is appropriate for all recreational cyclists. Because of different kinds of ground the use of trekking or mountain bikes is recommended.

The beginning of cycling route on the varied terrain The end of cycling route on varied terrain Tourist information centre Cultural sights

Sports activities Accommodation

Service of bicycles Resting Place Attention, very traffic road

Motorway

Border crossing point for international traffic

State road

Border crossing point for interstate traffic

Local road Side road, field or forest path


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E 653

E 59 E 57

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Lenart Dravograd

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E 653

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Lendava

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Maribor

Ljutomer

E 653

E 59

E 57

Ptuj Ormož

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E 65

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1 Vič – Lovrenc na Pohorju  6 2 Lovrenc na Pohorju – Mariborski otok  12

Čakovec

E 71

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Velika Nedelja – Središče ob Dravi  30 Središče ob Dravi – Vularija  34 Vularija - Donja Dubrava – Legrad  42 Zavrč – Varaždin – Gornji Kuršanec  48

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3 Mariborski otok – Malečnik  14 4 Malečnik – Orešje (Ptuj)  18

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5 Orešje (Ptuj) – Markovci  20 6 Markovci – Velika Nedelja  26 Varaždin

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E 65

E 71

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10 km


1. Vič – Lovrenc na Pohorju (45 km – asphalt)

Drauradweg

where the northwest hillsides come down to the Drava River. The whole area has been secured as a forest reserve because of its natural beauty. You should cycle through a pleasant and soothing forest environment. The major segment of the last part of the route, from Dravograd to Trbonje, has been directed through existing dirt road. In Trbonje you should visit the church. Drive on the right side and turn left to Dravče at the end of Trbonje. After 14 km you will cycle from Dravograd to Vuzenica.

The cycling route starts at the border crossing point Vič, where you should cycle on the left hand bank of the Drava River, which is running along a newly constructed independent cycling route and is separated from the carriageway by a safety rail. It is mostly running along high dykes which lean against the main road, in some places it closely approaches the Drava River. The route takes you up through the town of Dravograd where the cycling route is running as a mutually delineated path on the road surface of the main road and over the bridge which passes on the right bank of the Drava River. You should continue this way in the direction of Trbonje.

DRAVOGRAD lies at the confluence of the Drava River with the Meža River and the Mislinja River, or on the juncture of their valleys. The town has been established since ancient times, this was probably the junction of the ancient Roman paths from Ptuj (Poetoviona) and Celje (Celeia) to Virunum (Zollfeld) The route to Trbonje is gently sloping, unpretentious and well marked, the beautiful landscape changes its image quickly. The route continues on steep, rocky slope to Bukovje,

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VUZENICA was mentioned for the first time in 1238 and later in 1288 as a TIC Dravograd Trg 4. julija 50 SI-2370 Dravograd T: +386 2 871 02 85 E: info.dravograd@kanet.si I: www.dravograd.si

TIC Vuzenica Mladinska ul. 1 SI-2367 Vuzenica T: +386 2 8791220 F: +386 2 8791221 E: tic@vuzenica.si I: www.vuzenica.si

square. Above Zgornji trg stands new castle or »Štok« as inhabitants of Vuzenica name it. Above it there has been reconstructed renaissance portal tower with porthole and traces of a drawbridge preserved of old castle. The railway is also running through the town, which has been connecting Maribor to Klagenfurt since 1863. Thus typical stone viaducts can be seen in many places along the Drava valley.

The church of the assumption of virgin Mary on Kamen stands by the local road Vuzenica-Vuhred. The Priest’s house and the church of Saint Nicolay are placed in the old settlement. Medieval tombstones and a board with priests’ names since 1045 are in the church. There have been permanent exhibitions dedicated to former priest Anton Martin Slomšek in the priest’s house.

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In Vuzenica there have been many wooden buildings with numerous details which have been the monuments of national architecture and evidence of residential culture as »Poberska bajta«, »Levkova domačija« and »dimnica na Sabotinu« which are still standing nowadays and have been the great pride of Vuzenica history and inhabitants of Vuzenica. You should cycle by the Drava River in the direction of Sv. Vid to Vuhred which has been known for rafting work.

VUHRED has been known for rafting work and raftsmen named »flosarji«.

In the past shallow rectangular boats called »šajke« have been manufactured here. They have loaded goods on the Drava River. Natural site has been stream Vuhreščica which falls into the Drava River in two successive falls, upper has been 8m high. Since 1958 water energy has been used by hydropower plant Vuhred.

in the formal records for more than 850 years ago. The valley extends here, general conditions for development of industry are also better here. The town has kept its image of a market town in spite of many changes. Currently it has been a bit renovated, however nicely caught in the primary environment. A very diverse way from Vuhred to Podvelka has been running along in the length of 10 km. In Podvelka you should turn right in the way of Lehen na Pohorju where you will move off the Drava River. After 6 km you will come to Lehen na Pohorju. Here you cycle 500 m above sea level to the highest point of this cycling route. The way is running along the Velka River in the direction of Lovrenc na Pohorju.

On the second bank of the Drava River, 4 km from Vuhred, there is the town Radlje ob Dravi. The bridge connects both places.

RADLJE OB DRAVI

There is the town Radlje ob Dravi in the centre of the Drava valley between Dravograd and Maribor, next to the boarder with Austria. It has a very nice geographical position 371 m above sea level. There is the hill of Kozjak on the one side and hills of Pohorje overgrown with the most beautiful forests in Slovenia on the other side. Radlje ob Dravi has been already mentioned

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LOVRENC NA POHORJU

Between the church of Saint Lovrenc and cemetery stands pajštva – a drying house used for the drying of fruit and flax. The building is partly made of wood and partly built of stone and covered with a pitched roof. Fruit was dried inside on special shelves and the fire was made outside. Pajštva belongs to ethnologic monuments.

Turistično društvo Lovrenc na Pohorju Cesta vstaje 1 2344 Lovrenc na Pohorju Email: turizem@lovrenc.si

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Puša, which is one of the oldest settlements in Lovrenc, lies northwest of the main road. There stands a typical farm called Ladejenkovo. The building, which is supposed to be built in 15th century, is wooden, built of beam, the windows are squared and protected with baroque looking forged nets. The house is covered with a giant steep roof, covered with timber. A smokehouse was also here until World War 1, after that the walls have been whitened with lime. The floor has still been wooden.

Beekeeping centre with forest nature trails and beekeeping educational path was built in 1996 when the beekeeping organization celebrated its 75th anniversary. Autochthonous plant species have been shown at forest nature trails. Path of honey plants has also been represented. Historical development of hive systems has been showen at beekeeping educational path (Kranjič, Kirar’s hive, AŽ hive, LR hive). Glass has been used in hives to see inside.

You can continue your way from Lovrenc na Pohorju to the Lakes of Lovrenc – beautiful natural and tourist sight of Pohorje.

The lakes of Lovrenc are small lakes and

swampy windows in Pohorje swampland. Small lakes cover the space of 16 ha between Planinka (1392 m altitude) and Mulejev vrh (1533 m altitude) in headwaters of Radolnja, Mislinja and Velka. Small lakes are hollows with a surface of a few square meters and depth of 1.2 m. After leaving up the pasture the sphere has been overgrown with dwarf pine which passes on to the pine wood on both sides of swamp on more steep and strained slope. There is 11-22 small lakes, it depends on extent and duration of standing water. The highest small lake sits 1529 m above sea level, the lowest sits 1517 m above sea level. There is a wooden belvedere near the highest small lake. The lakes of Lovrenc are natural and tourist sights of Pohorje. There is an unpretentious settled and good marked footpath.

From Lovrenc na Pohorju you should come down to Puščava where there is an interesting cemetery near the church of Saint Mary. Originally the whole ravine in the way of Saint Lovrenc was called Puščava, however nowadays only the place, where Mary’s church is standing, is called Puščava.

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2. Lovrenc na Pohorju – Mariborski otok (23 km – asphalt) You should continue along the way in the direction of Ruše. After 5.6 km there is the last slope and then you will come to Činžat with a beautiful view. During the downhill event, a little before Falska pečina, you will come to the Fala castle. Here you can turn off the way in the direction of the Drava River and come to the hydro power plant Fala. Otherwise the way goes by the Fala castle and continues in the direction of Ruše.

RUŠE

Places in municipality of Ruše have very rich cultural, historic and political inheritance. These places were interesting to the first settlers already in the Bronze Age. Archaeological findings are evidence of long and rich history; prehistoric culture of urn cemeteries, ancient and Roman sepulchral cemeteries, traces of buildings from prehistoric and Roman era, mithareum from the third century.

Church of pilgrimage the name of Mary in Ruše was built in

1387. In the priest’s house near church was Latin secondary school Ruše where Slovene language was taught as a subject. The secondary school was opened from 1645 to 1760.

Hydro power plant Fala was the first power plant built on the Drava River. The construction started before the beginning of the first World War. It started operating in 1918.

From Ruše turn to Bezena, Bistrica ob Dravi, Laznica and Limbuš.

LIMBUŠ and its wider vicinity have rich history which goes

back to Illyrian-Celtic era when the bank of the Drava River was inhabited at old bay. There have been found fireplaces and crockery. The settlement was called Olimacion in the time of Christ’s birth and has been known since the Roman era. Seven Roman mounds have been preserved in which Trojan coins have been found. These mounds have also been in the immediate neighbourhood of the Drava River between the old and new bay.

In Limbuš is the Center Drava, where you can borrow boats. There are also play fields for team sports. New cycling route leads you to the old part of city Maribor from here.

Stream Lobnica falls into the Drava River at Smolnik and it is

one of the most watery and rushing streams of Pohorje which creates two famous waterfalls Veliki and Mali Šumik. Wood has been swept down to the valley near the stream. The railway goes across the stream on a beautiful stone viaduct.

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3. Mariborski otok – Malečnik (7 km – asphalt) You should cycle to the old part of city Maribor. Cross the Drava River and cycle along Maribor streets in the centre of the second biggest city in Slovenia, to the city Maribor.

TIC Maribor Partizanska c. 6a, 2000 Maribor Telefon: + 386 (0)2 23 46 611 Fax: + 386 (0)2 23 46 613 E: tic@maribor.si I: www.maribor-pohorje.si/

MARIBOR is the second largest city in Slovenia and the seat of the Municipality of

Maribor. It is a university and metropolitan city and economic, financial, administrative, educational, cultural, commercial and touristic centre of northeast Slovenia. The area of modern Maribor was the part of margraviate of Franconian country. In the region of Piramida there was erected a fortress, a castle which was first mentioned on 20th October 1164 as Castrum Marchburch. It was set up to supervise the entrance to the valley of the Drava River against Hungarian invasions. The name originates from the notion march castle or in German Burg in der Mark or Markpurg, Markburg and later Marburg. However the castle was probably erected before this date, Bernard Mariborski margrave of the Drava region, native of Spanheims with predicate Mariborski was already mentioned in 1124.

Malečnik

Old vine, the oldest vine in the world and old vine house

Old vine, registered in the Guinness book of Records, one of the biggest and oldest classic vine cellars in Europe, archduke Johannes in Meranovo, old vine festival, wine tasting in viticultural museum or in modern winery – all this and more will make you enthusiastic and convince you about rich wine tradition which is globally comparable and unique at the same time.

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Old city centre – Lent (water tower, the minorit church and monastery and the Puppet theatre, judgement tower) city walls and rafting

Beside the numerous charming sights in this attractive part of the city, rafters add their special spirit. The oldest vine in the world and the old vine house, defence towers, Jewish quarter and synagogue, Jewish square and Jewish tower and all the other sights in Lent welcomes you on the bank of the Drava River all the way from the Water tower to the Judgement tower.

Catherdral and belvedere

The construction of the cathedral and further development brought additional cultural impetus and enforcement to the city. It was built in the 12th century as a Romanesque building; today it shows Gothic style with long choir from the 14th century and central nave from the 15th century.

Synagogue and Jewish tower

The synagogue was first mentioned in 1429, however it was certainly built earlier. Its occasional role of the seat of the supreme rabbinate for Štajerska was one of the examples of Jewish community. It was remade to a catholic church called All Saints in 1501 and reorganized and used as a storehouse after 1785. The Maribor synagogue serves as a centre for cultural activities; it is the place which offers various events including concerts, exhibitions, literary evenings and round tables.

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Maribor castle and provincial museum

The castle, adorned with different styles and building eras, was built between 1478 and 1483 by Emperor Friderik III for the purpose of fortifying the north eastern part of the city walls. The castle has been changed into the rich feudal residence in the course of time.

Maribor art gallery

The exhibition rooms – Maribor art gallery, the exhibition salon Razstavni salon Rotovž located on the Square of Boris Kraigher and the exhibition salon Razstavni salon Rotovž located on the square Rotovški trg – indicate to successful research, documentary, pedagogical and exhibition activities of museum of modern art founded in 1954 which has approximately 2200 painting, sculptural and graphical works in its permanent collection.

Franciscan church with monastery proudly stands next to important streets in the city centre – Partizanska cesta and Svetozarevska ulica.

Rotovž square (Rotovž plague monument)

Late Gothic Rotovž was built in 1515 on square Glavni trg. It was Renaissance rebuilt between 1563 and 1565 by Italian masters. From that time originates the balcony (loggia) decorated with relief of the city coat-of-arms with two lions and date 1565. Frontage is decorated with pilasters. One third of inhabitants in Maribor died because of plague which appeared in 17th century. In grateful thanks for the end of plague inhabitants erected plague spot – pillar with image of Mary – in 1681. It was replaced in 18th century with present which is the work of Jožef Štraub.

Aloysius church

Beautiful building of late Baroque architecture is placed in the old city centre where it decorates old street Koroška street and rounds off culturalartistic image of square Glavni trg. The building was designed by domestic architect Jochannes Fuchs, the equipment was made by Jožef Holzinger. The church with extremely beautiful made rococo railings was made in 1769.

City park with three ponds and Aquarium-terrarium Maribor

Take a walk north of the city centre and relax in a nice, maintained park. It consists of 5 ha park and mouldable surfaces together with three ponds, Piramida and Kalvarija. The path leads among different trees, well regulated flower gardens, Rožni grič and fountains and also across three beautiful ponds which presents home to numerous water birds. There is also very popular aquarium-terrarium. There is also a well regulated children’s playground in the smaller part of the park and children are exited about it.

Pohorje is a mountain chain located in the north east of Slovenia and is mostly overgrown with coniferous forest. It extends between the Drava River on the north and Dravsko-Ptujsko polje on the south. On the west it extends to Dravograd, on the east to Maribor and on the south to Slovenske Konjice. This is the ideal place for mountain bikers. They can drive by cable railway and cycle to the valley or visit specialized bike park. Many bike events are organized in Pohorje. There are accommodations for bikers in the immediate vicinity. 17


Maribor’s island is a natural sight – island on the Drava River – with

sports playgrounds for beach volleyball, children’s playground and walking and jogging paths through environment. In the summer season there is an outdoor swimming pool complex named Maribor’s island.

You should cross a two-storeyed bridge over the Drava River and continue along a shorter part of the route on the right bank of the Drava River in the direction of Malečnik. After about 2 km you will come to the left bank of the Drava River. You should continue the way through Malečnik.

4. Malečnik – Orešje (Ptuj) (24 km – asphalt) The route leads you through Malečnik, Celestrina, Zgornji and Spodnji Duplek and near Dvorjane. From Malečnik to Dvorjane there are more than 12 km of straight road with no steep slopes. Above Malečnik, the church of Saint Mary on Gorca is located; there is also the Way of the Cross. On the top of the hill is beautiful view of Dravsko polje, from Pohorje to Haloze. You should cycle through Landscape park Drava which extends from the old riverbed of the Drava River and landscape near it between Maribor and Ptuj and stretches across an area of municipalities of Maribor, Duplek, Miklavž na Dravskem polju and Starše. It extends from Malečnik Bridge to boarder with the Municipality of Ptuj. It includes also the

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Malečnik

old riverbed of the Drava River with all the most important biotopes preserved in this area of 2337 ha.

Vurberk

From Dvorjane to Vurberk is a steeper slope. During cycling you can see famous Vurberk Castle. The remains of the first castle originate from the 12th century. Beautiful view from Vurberk extends to Pohorje and Dravsko polje.

VURBERK

The remains of the first castle originate from the 12th century. The castle was the property of the Counts of Hollenburg or Lords of Vurberk who named it and gave it a significant coat-of-arms with a dragon. It was attacked by the Turks in 1493. In the 16th century the castle was renovated and fortified with Renaissance city walls and defence tower. After the First World War Russian Red Cross established sanatorium for pulmonary diseases which was changed in to the centre for training of German military and political commissars during the Second World War. After bombing one of the most beautiful Slovene castles it has become the only the source of building material for neighbouring inhabitants. The inside yard was later changed in to the season theatre.

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After the descent from Vurberk you should cycle 8 km by the Drava River in the direction of Orešje which is 2.5 km away from Ptuj. The way is running along nice local roads, on the cyclist’s right side is the old riverbed of the Drava River. In Orešje there are well regulated resting places for cyclists at the brink of the forest. You can rest there and take a look on a big board where you are situated.

Hince’s sequoia stands by the left bank of the Drava River, 2 km before

the centre of Ptuj in a settlement called Orešje. This kind of tree was brought to Europe in the 19th century and planted in parks. Sequoia in Orešje has been the biggest among trees of this kind in Slovenia. The extent of the tree is 743 cm and it is 43,5 m high.

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5. Orešje (Ptuj) – Markovci (8 km – asphalt) The route continues by the Drava River in the direction of Ptuj which is the oldest town is Slovenia. It originated by the Drava River, on the juncture of Slovenske gorice, Haloze, Dravsko and Ptujsko polje. You should cycle over the cycling bridge and continue along the shorter part of the route on the right bank of the Drava River and come back on the left side, where you will continue the way by the Lake Ptuj to Ranca where there a is beautiful view of Ptuj and its lake.

TIC Ptuj Slovenski trg 5 2250 Ptuj Telefon: 02 779 60 11 e-mail: info@ptuj.info www.ptuj.info

PTUJ has a rich history and cultural inheritance. You will have a view of the whole town from the castle. The town hall has been the most prominent house in Mestni trg. The administration of the Town Municipality of Ptuj is based here today. The statue of St Florjan’s is in the middle of the square. It has been erected by inhabitants in 1745. It is worth seeing the Dominican and Minorite monastery, the church of Saint George, mithareum … You can relax in a spa where you can find inside and outside pools, hotel, wellness or you can try excellent local wines in the wine cellar in the town centre. The town area has been already settled since the Palaeolithic; however the town experienced blooming during Roman times when fortification Poetoviona was developed from a military camp. The name originates from the time of emperor Trajan who gave to the settlement the status of town. Ptuj is one of the biggest centres of mithras shrines in Europe with five mithras shrines. The Orpheus monument stands in front of the city tower and belongs to the cemetery by the street Prešernova ulica. Roman brickworks kiln in the street Rimska ploščad and Roman stones in streets Prešernova and Cankarjeva ulica represent Roman

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Poetoviona. In the early Middle Ages there was probably a Slavonic settlement on the southern slope. Written sources show that churches stood on the area of provost’s church and southern of street Prešernova ulica in the 9th century. Medieval Ptuj developed between the Drava River on the south and castle hill on the north. Typical triangle shape has been bounded by castle on the north, the Dominican monastery on the west and Minorite monastery on the east. The town got town walls with defence towers in the 14th century which have been modernized by Italian builders in the 16th century because of the Turks. Drava tower is the only one which has been preserved. In the tower is also the Mihelič gallery.

Ptuj castle is located on the hill in the old town centre. The hill has already been settled in the prehistory and antiquity. It was also attractive to medieval feudal lords because of its strategic position. They settled the post, of which the tower has been preserved. When

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the post decayed, Salzburg archbishops as feudal lords of Ptuj constructed a new castle in the 12th century. Palacium – today’s Leslie wing remains today. Major reconstructions in the Renaissance and Baroque periods left a strong stamp on the castle. Today, Ptuj Castle is a museum. On the ground floor visitors can see musical instruments used in the past by wealthy Ptuj noblemen and citizens. The most beautiful castle chambers are on the first floor. Displays of period furniture, tapestries, paintings and small everyday objects present household furnishings from the second half of the 16th century to the second half of the 19th century. On the second floor, visitors encounter traditional Carnival costumes and masquerade figures from Ptujsko polje, Dravsko polje, Haloze, and Slovenske Gorice such as the remarkable Kurenti, Orači, Ploharji and others. The castle art gallery boasts some of the most beautiful examples of Gothic and Baroque art in Slovenia.

Ptuj-Ormož regional museum

Permanent exhibitions in Ptuj castle where you can see (feudal dwelling culture, arms, musical instruments, Shrovetide masks, glass paintings and the France Mihelič graphics collection and Sluga new collection). The Dominican monastery holds a numismatic collection, a collection of small archaeological finds, and a Roman lapidary collection. The Velika Nedelja and the Ormož castles hold temporary exhibitions. Ptuj regional museum also manages mithraic temples I and III in Spodnja Hajdina and Zgornji Breg, while art exhibitions take place at the Mihelič gallery in the tower by the Drava River.

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The city tower

It is the most prominent building in the town. It has been forming the veduta since Gothic. In 1830 Ptuj curate Simon Povoden had several small antique objects installed into the tower, thus forming the oldest Slovene open air museum called the Povoden museum.

The Orpheus munument

It is the oldest public monument in Slovenia preserved at its original place. It is located in front of the city tower in the middle of square Slovenski trg. Five meters tall the monument Roman tombstone carved out of Pohorje marble is the symbol of the town. It was erected in honour of city mayor Marcus Valerius Verus in the 2nd century A.D. In the Middle Ages the Orpheus monument also served as a pillory. It has been the first open air museum in Slovenia as numerous Roman monuments have been installed into the city tower since 1830.

Mithras shrines

Five mithras shrines have been found in the town and surroundings. Three of them are in the Dominican monastery; two of them are on display on the site (Spodnja Hajdina, Zgornji Breg, Ptuj). The first shrine was built in the middle of the 2nd century, discovered between 1898 and 1899 and is the oldest shrine in the Danubian provinces. The second shrine was discovered in 1901, its monuments are in the crypt of Dominican monastery. The third shrine is located in Zgornji Breg by the Studenčnica stream. It was built in the middle of the 3rd century before Christ. There are many plates of reliefs.

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The Minorite monastery

The first mention in written documents appeared in the 13th century. This monastery was established by the Lords of Ptuj. In the beginning, this was a long, narrow, single-nave and simple preacher church with a salient presbytery, the so-called »long choir«, with two quadrangular vaulted bays and with a conclusion ending in five sides of an octagon. In the 13th century, the monastic buildings were humble and encompassed only the eastern part of today’s complex. In the following centuries, the church was not subject to significant changes. In the last quarter of the 17th century the monastery, which was lead then by Casparus Dietl, quite a few Baroque elements were added. The Baroque façade, being the first of the kind in the territory of today’s Slovenia, introduced certain dynamism in the construction. Cross hall and all three tracts of the monastery have been renovated up to 1696. The most prominent rooms in the monastery are the season refectory and Minorite library.

Lake Ptuj lies on the Drava River eastern from Ptuj. The biggest Slovene artificial lake is 7 km in length and has a surface area of 4.1 km 2 and was created by the dyke of the Drava River in Markovci. The lake contains 17.1 million m3 of water. It is used as reservoir for hydro power plant Formin and as surface for recreation including rowing, sailing, wind surfing and fishing. It is also an important place for migratory birds, especially rare and endangered species which have found their habitat here. In the immediate neighbourhood of the town is thermal park where you can stay for the night, enjoy the water activities and the longest toboggan, play golf or can relax in wellness.

After a short break near the lake the way connects with regional road for approximately 100 meters, and then it continues through Spuhlja and to Zabovci. Zabovci have rich inheritance in architecture. The route passes along well regulated dirt road for the short time. Continue through Markovci and to the dyke where you have a view of Lake Ptuj and the beginning of the Šturmovec landscape park. Markovci is known as the centre of traditional carnival, thus it is also named Korant’s land. It is very lively in all neighbouring villages in the carnival time.

MARKOVCI Kurent is one of the most famous carnival characters also known as Korant.

It is a demonic figure, which is chasing away the winter with its appearance and movements. Nowadays it is dressed in a sheepskin coat and girded with heavy cowbells. On the head he has a mask with goose feathers, coloured ribbons, long red tongue and teeth from the beans, the red or green woollen knitted stockings and with the frightful »ježevka« in the hand. This image has been created in the last decades of the last century; however inhabitants of Markovci revived his old image with rabbit fur and homemade mask.

Šturmovec landscape park is located on SE (the end) of the Lake Ptuj. It extends over the triangle among the old riverbeds of the Drava and Dravinja Rivers on the edge of Haloze and Videm slope under the bank of the lake Ptuj. It is 125 hectares embracing of riverside landscape, which has been protected since 1979 as a Šturmovec landscape park. The area is distinguished by the diversity of habitats, gravel beds, shoals of dead branches and spring water, floodplain forests and meadows. Natural conditions and the impact of humans contributed to the fact that we can find a meeting place of animal and plant species that are endangered and overlooked on the small area. Here you can see over 230 species of birds. Interesting and endangered species at the same time are the ones connected with the dynamics of the Drava and Dravinja Rivers, such as small sandpiper, plover and little kingfisher. 3 km long educational path is maintained in the Park. Access to the park in regulated by the road Markovci-Videm pri Ptuju. 25


6. Markovci – Muretinci – Velika Nedelja (20 km – asphalt – dirt road)

VELIKA NEDELJA castle and settlement Velika Nedelja got its name after an important battle on the Easter of 1199 when Friderik Ptujski snatched uninhabited land from Hungarians and later gave it to Teutonic Knights. The most important monuments are the church of holy trinity and castle where you can see the chapel, ethnological collection and historic exhibition Velika Nedelja through history. There are 900 exponents in the ethnologic collection which are evidence of people living here.

You should continue the way along the peaceful local road among fields through Nova vas pri Markovcih and Stojnci. Two well regulated resting points are in this section. The first resting point is near the old riverbed and well regulated sports playground. The second one is located by the local road surrounded with fields. Stojnci village borders on Muretinci where you come to a major road where you should turn left and cycle by the retirement home (on your right side). You should continue along the way in the direction of Ormož. You will cycle through quite compact settlements Mala vas, Gajevci and Placerovci, which invite with their homeliness to take a rest. After Placerovci village you will notice a bridge on your left side which will lead you on to the left side of the Drava River. You should cycle among settlements and fields, cross over stream Pesnica and come to Osluševci, later to Cvetkovci. On the left side is flat country which has been inhabited since 2100 before Christ; on the right side is the Drava River. The way is well regulated with dirt road and is running along far away from houses. On the brink of protected field of water supply there is well regulated resting point for cyclists where they can have lunch in peaceful and intact nature. You also get a nice view on the castle of Velika Nedelja. Turn left when you cycle to smaller bridge, turn left then cross over unprotected level crossing and continue to the main road in Velika Nedelja.

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Be careful here because the route joins to the heavily trafficked regional road to Ormož. In the case you would like to see the castle you should turn left on the main road and after approximately 100 m you will come to beautiful castle where view extends over fields on fabulous Haloze hills. If you like to continue the way to Ormož you should turn right on the main road in the direction of Ormož.

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6 a. Markovci – Muretinci – Zavrč variant on the right bank of the Drava River in direction to Varaždin (9 km – asphalt) If you decide to continue the way in the direction of Varaždin, you should turn right in Muretinci and after less than 2 km you will come to the crossroad with regional road where you should turn left in the direction of Zavrč. Beautiful views on the old riverbed of the Drava River and Borl castle on the rock extends on the bridge.

stands on the rock above the Drava River near village Dolane. Drava cycling route is running along under the castle rock. Borl castle had an important role in the past because of its strategic location near the Hungarian-Croatian boarder.

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Borl castle

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First it was border Hungarian post and has probably been stood in the first third of the 12th century or even before. Hungarian name of the castle is Borlyn (which means river crossing). It has also been known as Ankenstein which is German name. The first concrete date of its mention was 1255 when Hungarian king and Steyer duke Bela IV. enfeoffed it to Friderik Ptujski. It was the property of Lords of Ptuj until 1438. Further 7 km in the direction of Zavrč and the international border crossing point with Republic of Croatia you should cycle by the regional road.

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7. Velika Nedelja – Središče ob Dravi (17 km – asphalt – dirt road)

Ormož castle is surrounded with a beautiful park which has many ash trees, lime trees, oak trees and also some exotic plants (tulip tree, ginkgo, maclura and others). In the middle of the park is a vault from the beginning of the 20th century where the dead Wurmbrand–Stuppach, Pongratz and Georgevits were buried.

From Velika Nedelja you should cycle by the regional road to Ormož where you can see numerous cultural attractions, wine cellars where you can try different sorts of wines. In the centre of the town near the castle and beautiful castle park you should turn right in the direction of the Drava River and cycle by the railway and bigger industrial building on the left side and Ormož reservoir on the right hand side.

ORMOŽ is the town on the border of Slovenske gorice, it is located on the

natural terrace above the Drava River. The town, rich with history, has been the centre of important traffic ways and the flat country has been inhabited since 2100 before Christ. Ormož had exceeded all the surrounding places, thus it has been the biggest settlement in the eastern Alpine region because of its expanse and urbanistic plan. Archaeologists have discovered evidence of building, residential, even culinary and drinking culture in its past population. The settlement decayed because of unknown reasons, whilst the town rose again in the Middle Ages.

Ormož castle was first mentioned in 1278. Rudolf Habsburški allowed Friderik Ptujski to build the castle because he had helped him at battles against Czech king Otokar II. The castle was named Friedau - after its first lord Friderik who had built it.

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Lake Ormož reserve TIC Ormož Kolodvorska 9 2270 Ormož Tel: 02 741 53 56 Mail: tic.ormoz.grad@siol.net www.slovenia.info/ormoz

The part of former magnificent natural process of the Drava River, which has dynamically transformed Dravska lowland, is now transformed to Ormož reservoir which represents the secondary water biotope. By the lake are bigger reeds, swampy grasslands and swampy forest. Lake Ormož is the station and winter quarters of numerous water birds – ducks, geese, waders, gulls and terns. Pygmy cormorants which are very rare in Slovenia spend the winter here. In the winter time the Drava River has been one of the most important winter quarters in Slovenia for European and Siberian water birds, especially the Pannonian part between Maribor and Središče ob Dravi. Out of the 40,000 water birds which spend winter in our country a half can be found here.

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You should cycle by the railway and continue the way among fields in the direction of Frankovci, stay on the right side on the verge of spacious fields. It is necessary to be careful here as the part of the road is asphalt and the part dirt road. The cyclist can enjoy the view of extensive fields by the road. Then you come to Obrež and Grabe. You should continue the way on the main route through Središče ob Dravi where a bend leads you to a smaller square. Take your time for relaxing and resting and try to feel the relaxing beat of the place. You should follow to the cycling signs which will lead you to the national boundary Slovenia-Croatia.

SREDIŠČE OB DRAVI was first mentioned in 1225

when lords of Ptuj accepted it in a Hungarian feud. Archaeological findings discovered a prehistoric settlement from the Palaeolithic, Roman coins and remains of buildings with traces of previous and early Slavonic settlements. In the Middle Age the settlement developed near the tower castle which has been later demolished by the Turks. After the decree of countess Barbara the settlement got the rights of a market town in 1433. It is interesting to visit the Parish church in Grabe, museum, oil mill and chapel in Središče ob Dravi.

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Središče ob Dravi landscape park

By Središče ob Dravi the valley of the Drava River disappears and here the flat country of Pannonian lowland begins. On the 9 km long way between the dyke of Lake Ormož and Središče ob Dravi, where it finally leaves Slovenia, the Drava River has a 7 m fall, it creates numerous rapids and turns, river branches and islands, many lethargies, gravel pits and reeds. This untouched nature has been preserved because of its secure distance of settlements, thus 2 km wide flood bows represent a beautiful landscape image. The biggest richness of the river is its free stream, high spirits and dynamics which change its shape all the time. In the landscape park many different habitats can be found; they enable great biodiversity in the area. 105 kinds of breeder birds, 15 kinds of amphibians, 9 kinds of reptiles and numerous mammals have been found here so far. The most important is otter.

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8. Središče ob Dravi – Vularija (main route: 23 km – asphalt) Crossing the border you arrive in Trnovec, turn left towards the railroad track to village Macinec where you can visit the curch of Blessed Virgin Mary.

MACINEC The church of the Blessed Virgin Mary was built in 14th century by Templar monks in Gothic style.

ČREČAN

At the entrence to the village there is a beautiful pond where you can rest and eat fresh fish. In the village you can see a series of old traditional houses that were built in 19th century. These houses are rare examples of which preserved rural architectural heritage. After 7 km drive from the border, you‘ve come to the Gornji Hrašćan which is known for Horvat blacksmith shop.

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In Gornji Hraščan you can continue along the main path or go along alternative path wich will take you to the City of Čakovec. If you continue along the main path you will arrive in village Pušćine.

When leaving Pušćine, continue towards village Gornji Kuršanec, then turn left in the direction of village Orehovica. If you continue straight through Gornji Kuršanec and go straight to the bridge over the Drava river you can visit beautiful baroque city Varaždin.

PUŠĆINE

GORNJI KURŠANEC Memorial to the Count Nikola Zrinski

Boarding house Mamica is located on the main path, offering delicious food and rooms. Cyclotoursist are welcomed. You can get information about local bike paths that are marked. If you want to dicover wild and domestic animals, just ask the host for safari park »Lovište Zrinskih«, which is 3 km off the main path.

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Zrinski was one of the most important persons in 17th century Croatia. He is remebered as a great warior, politician and a poet. He died in 1664 while hunting wild boars.

Varaždin lake is an artifical lake built for the purposes of hydroelectric

power plant. The lake is an intresting destination for bathing, boat ridding or fishing. Restaurant Vrbi offering fish specialitates is at the lake in Kuršanec.

GORNJI HRAŠČAN Horvat blacksmith shop

has been located in the same building for 100 years. Blacksmith shops had an important role in the life of a village, because of varitey of tools made or repaired. Also, horses were shoed there.

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You can continue towards the Drava river to Varaždin lake. If you decide not to take a tour of the lake, turn left in Gornji Kuršanec towards Kuršanec in direction to Šandorovec, Totovec, Vularija. 10 km of paths lead you between fields, grasslands and small villages.

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8. a Gornji Hrašćan – Čakovec – Totovec (side route: 15 km – asphalt)

TIC Čakovec Kralja Tomislava 1 40000 Čakovec Telefon +385 (0)40 313 319 Fax +385 (0)40 310 991 Email:tzg-cakovca@ck.t-com.hr www.tourism-cakovec.hr

In Gornji Hraščan you can continue driving along the main path or you can decide for secondary path towards villages Pretetinec, Nedelišće and Čakovec. You arrive to Čakovec after 8 km ride between cultivated fields. To Nedelišće, the trail leads you across arranged paths.

ČAKOVEC is a city of European spirit and pleasant people. Loacted in the center of Međimurje and awarded 3 times as the best arranged continetal city of Croatia. During the Roman empire Čakovec was legionary camp called Aquama. In 13th century count Čak built a wooden tower, which is precursor of the modern city and the source of its name. In 16th century, the famous Croatian noble family Zrinski built the unbeaten and sumptuous wasserburg around which a free royal city developed afterwards. In the late 19th century city was industrialized, and in early 20 th century one of the most beautiful palaces in the city was built by the trade guild. Today Čakovec is a lively and modern city . Near the city center are indoor pools with wellness and many sports facilities. In the center of the city there is a multitude of excellent restaurants (Lovački dvori, Pilka, Rustica,Kristal, Barok), and hotels Royal and Park as well as several boarding houses.

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Old town of Zrinski

The most important monument in Čakovec is the Old town of Zrinski family. The fortress was first mentioned in 13th century. Within the palace is the Museum of Međimurje. The museum shows, through its archaeological, historical, cultural,ethnographic collection and art gallery, a rich history of the city and the region. In the center of the city is a Baroque Franciscan

monastery and the Church of Saint Nicholas.

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8. b Trnovec – Gornji Kuršanec – Vularija (side route: 28 km – dirt road – asphalt) If you‘re attracted to ride through nature you can go along this path. Immediately after passing the border, one km after village Trnovec turn right, driving along the gravel path. The first part of the journey will take you between the fields and groves, while the second half takes you through woods. You will get going closer to the Drava River and its shore with beautiful sandbanks. A 10 km ride through the woods and fields follows afterwards. You arrive to Gornji Kuršanec. Here, turn right towards Varaždin Lake and the next 10 km you can drive on the gravel road next to the canal, or climb on the dam and drive by the lake.

Trnovec

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Varaždin Lake is an artificial lake built in the early 80-ies of the 20th century. It is an interesting destination for swimming and fishing, and near Kuršanec there is a restaurant with fish dishes.

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At the end of the Varaždin Lake, turn left and drive 3 km to the village Vularija.

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9. Vularija – Donja Dubrava – Legrad (main route: 37,5 km – asphalt) In the village Vularija continue driving towards Orehovica and Podbrest. In Podbrest you can freshen up and spend the night in the cafe Grin. Continue driving 3 km to the village Otok. is a another excellent restaurant with traditional cuisine and rooms is situated in Otok. Throughout Otok you can continue along the main path or turn right towards Lake Dubrava.

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TIC Prelog Glavna 33, Prelog T: +385 (0)40 63 80 85 www.prelog.hr

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If you continue along the main path, you will drive between fields and the City Prelog. Drive to the town centre and turn right towards the lake.

PRELOG is a small town with a rich history of craftsmanship and a strong industry today.

In the center near the baroque Church of Sv. Jacob built in 18th century there is the family hotel Prelog and several restaurants.

Lake HE Donja Dubrava is 11 km

long and is the largest artificial lake in Croatia. Near the lake, there is a small harbor for boats, camping area and a small restaurant.

Drive to the channel/dam of the lake Dubrava, where you turn right and drive 7.5 km along the channel-the dam of Lake Dubrava (driving between the canal and dam or along the dam , where the path is wide and goes sideline to the main road wich is quite busy

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with traffic). On your left side, a few hundred meters from the track there is a series of villages with interesting offer.

In village OPOROVEC you can visit the goat farm of family Zadravec, and taste their excellent cheese, play with baby goats, work with the hosts in nature or just sleep over in the fresh hay.

SVETA MARIJA

1 km from the main path in the center of the village Sveta Marija you can visit the Collection of the lace. The skill of making »svetomarska« lace is not forgotten thanks to the local women. It has been entered into a global encyclopedia of lace thanks to its beauty. Exhibiton about the lace is in etnographical collection and with prior announcement you can be try making it.

DONJI VIDOVEC If you turn few hundred meters to the left from the main path, you can experience a unique attraction.

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Gold panning at the Drava

The last European gold panners live in Donji Vidovec. Legend has it that the cross on the top of the local church of St. Vida is gilded with pure gold from the Drava river, a gift from local gold panners. Gold from the Drava is the purest non-derivative gold in the world. This traditional trade, unique in Europe, can be seen if you visit ethnographical collection in the center of the village or if you make a stop in Golf Hotel and arrange the presentation or couple of days programme.

If you want to visit the Drava-Mura mouth in the Međimurje county, you need to drive through the center of Donja Dubrava to the northeast, and drive 2 km by gravel road to the resort Muškaljin. Here you can join Murska route along the river Mura and drive to the north-west and towards St. Martin na Muri and Slovenia.

Muškatljin

This equestrian farm is located in the special zoological reserve Veliki Pažut right next to the the Mura - Drava estuary. Guided by a host you can reach the river mouth by bike, horse, boat or on foot. The mouth of the two rivers can be seen from a position that is unique, but inaccessible to those uninformed. Along with fish or hunting specialties hosts will offer you a possibility of overnight stay, organization of fishing or an unforgettable photo safari.

9. a Otok – Prelog (side route: 3 km – dirt road) In Otok you can turn right into the woods towards the Drava River, where you can drive 2.5 km along the Drava river and Lake Dubrava. The ride continues along the mainroad or the embankment of HE Donja Dubrava.

DONJA DUBRAVA Dobrava blacksmith shop

Numerous horses were shod in this Blacksmith shop and tools and parts of agricultural machinery were produced from mid 19th century to 70-ies in 20th century. You can also give a try at your own blacksmith skills guided by the master.

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In Dubrava turn right (towards Koprivnica) on the main road. Drive across the bridge and after 3 km you will arrive in the Koprivničko križevačka county and Legrad, the village near the Drava-Mura mouth.

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10. Zavrč – Varaždin – Gornji Kuršanec (main route: 27 km – asphalt)

VINICA (5 km off the route) Opeka arboretum is the plantation of various domestic and foreign

trees and shrubs that serve to scientific, educational and decorative purposes. There you can study biological and ecological characteristics of trees and bushes. Its the most important arboretum in Croatia and is located on a 64ha site. It is located on the plains and hilly area and is a classic example of the English garden. It contains more than 800 different species of trees, shrubs, flowers and other plants.

After crossing the international border crossing with Croatia the cycling to the Varaždin follows. You should cycle along the main route through Križovljanska Dubrava, Veliki Lovrečan, where you can see the chapel, and come to Brezje Dravsko. You can continue along the main route or take the side route and turn left in Brezje towards the Drava River. The main cycling route goes along the main road through Cestica where you can visit Križovljangrad Mansion.

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You should cycle in the direction of Petrinjanec, where you can see one the the oldest hunting grounds in Croatia.

CESTICA Križovljangrad mansion was built in the Renaissance period. The

Renaissance portal with relief characters Sirens and vines that leads to the main hall on the floor is very interesting. The mansion is the most northern castle in Croatian Zagorje. It was burnt down 1949 and since then it has been falling into ruins. You should take care between Gornje Vratno and Donje Vratno to stay on the left side of the route. If you have time you should visit Opeka Arburetum in Vinica 5 km off the route.

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PETRIJANEC Zelendvor hunting ground 10

is one of the oldest hunting grounds in Croatia (since 1870) and extends to 8,500 hectares. It is recognized for individual or group hunting for partridges, pheasants, quail, snipe, hares and rabbits. In forest park in the centre of the complex a hunting lodge and restaurant are located.

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You should continue the way in the direction of Varaždin through Majerje, Sračinec and Hrašćica. The way leads you to Varaždin.

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Turistički ured Varaždinske županije Uska 4, 42000 Varaždin Tel:+385 (0)42 210 096 Fax +385 (0)42 210 073 Email: tz.var.zupanije@vz.t-com.hr www.turizam-vzz.hr

VARAŽDIN

Many of today’s cultural and historical sights in Varaždin testify to its rich history, in the time of more than eight centuries. Varaždin name was quoted for the first time in 1181, the status of free royal town Croatian-Hungarian King Andrew II. granted to Varaždin in 1209. During its blossoming, at the end of XVIII. century, when many Croatian noblemen and landowners, artisans and artists luxuriously lived there, Varaždin was the capital city of Croatia. Nobility, craftsmen and merchants, artists and scientists have created the history of this town and left it sumptuous Baroque buildings and collections of their works and their music. One after another the generations saved with pride the rich inheritance which now can be seen in museum collections, in the balustrades of the monasteries and secret courtyards. So today the city is decorated with the voice of the city: music, baroque and flowers. Everyone will feel the spirit of previous centuries in Varaždin, hospitality of inhabitants and the beauty of this small, charming town. In town you can walk through the famous park and watch the rich cultural heritage preserved palaces and the old town halls. Varaždin inhabitants appreciate their culture and decorate it with flowers, greenery and landscaped avenues. The walk through the town will take you far in the past.

Špancirfest

brings old masters to the town, players roam in the streets, singers, clowns and all bring vibrancy to the streets of the old town centre. Visitors, who primarily respect a long musical tradition, will enjoy the Varaždin Baroque evenings.

TIC Varaždin Ivana Padovca 3, 42000 Varaždin Tel:+385 (0)42 210 987 Fax +385 (0)42 210 985 Email: info@tourism-varazdin.com www.tourism-varazdin.hr

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Old castle and city museum

Varaždin feudal fortress, called the old castle, has been the most important historical building in Varaždin. Today’s fort was built from the 13th-19th century. Its oldest part is the central tower. It was previously owned by the important noble families, for example Counts of Celje, Ivan Ungnad, George Brandenburg Croatian Tome Erdödyja Count and his successors. In 1925 it came under the ownership of Varaždin. Here you can visit the town museum, which was opened in 1925 and has four permanent exhibitions.

Croatian national theatre (HNK) is located in the castle, in which is quite a long theatrical tradition. It has been working since 1637. And from that time until 1771 theater performances were held in Isusovačko theatre in the high school. The first public theatre in Varaždin was built in 1788. In 19th century performances were executed in Croatian and German language. German theatre has worked until the end of the century and has played an important role in the proliferation of theatrical culture and at the formation of the Croatian theatre. 52

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Drava forest park

There is wooded area on the north side of Varaždin near the Drava River, covering 87 ha and is protected as a park-forest. The area is extremely attractive because of its biological diversity (185 plants and 109 animal species are documented). You can swimm in the swimming pools in Varaždin.

Entomological museum

»Wonderland world of insects« is one of the most beautiful exhibitions in Europe. You will find the museum in the Herzer Palace.

Palaces and old city halls can

be found in the old town centre. Most of them were built in the 16th century.

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Firefighter’s museum is the only museum in Croatia, which shows the history of Croatian firefighting. At the collecting of exhibits a number of surrounding clubs participated the and the people from Varaždin. Important sacral buildings are the Church of the blessed

virgin Mary - Varaždin Cathedral, church of St Nicholas, franciscan church of St John the Baptist, Ursuline church of the nativity and church of St Florian.

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10. a Brezje Dravsko - Varaždin bridge (side route: 34 km, most of the way is dirt road) In Brezje Drava you can choose the side route and cycle along the dirt road among the fields where you can unexpectedly meet some lovely animals. After 2.5 km you will come to Križovljangrad mansion which is the most northern castle in the Croatian Zagorje. The mansion was affected by fire in 1949 and since then it has been falling in ruins. You should continue the way towards Virje Križovljansko and cycle near the Drava River Virje Island, from where you can see the city Ormož. The trail continues along the right bank of the Drava River near

You should continue the way acroos the bridge of the Drava River, where a wonderful view of the Varaždin lake to the village of Gornji Kuršanec will extend. When you come across the bridge, you can continue the way along the main road to the Gornji Kuršanec or you can turn right after the bridge and continue the way by the Varaždin Lake.

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the reservoir. There are larger marshy grasslands and marshy forest by the lake. Lake Ormož has become the station and winter place of numerous wintering waterfowls - ducks, geese, gulls and terns. A rare Pygmy Cormorant spends the winter here. You should continue the way through Donje Vratno to Strmec Podravski, a place where you can return to the main route or continue along the side route. From here you Only two kilometers split you from the crossing of the Drava River. During the crossing you can admire the beautiful lake Ormož. You should continue the way, along the forest on your left, and channel on the right. Then follows 15 kilometers long way of cycling in the pure nature, where you can freely ride, forget the traffic and observe the untouched nature, until you come to Varaždin bridge.

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10. b Varaždin bridge – Vularija (side route: 11 km – dirt road) When you cross the Varaždin bridge, you should turn right and continue the way by the Varaždin Lake. It is an artificial reservoir that was built in the early 1980’s. The lake has been an interesting destination for swimming and fishing, especially on the northwestern coast in the vicinity of the Gornji Kuršanec for many years, where the lake ends. At the end of the lake after 10 miles, you should turn left in the direction of Vularija.

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Are you interested in cycling on different thematic routes? May be cycling in pairs, discovering natural and cultural heritage with your children, discovering culinary specialities, thermal water…Then you should choose one of thematic products, which are divided into different stages and go in the way of your wishes. You can find more about individual tours on www.mura-drava.eu.

Health in nature

While cycling in the unspoiled riverside environment of the Mura and Drava, living a life in harmony with nature will seem like the most normal thing in the world. You will have the opportunity to experience an ecological way of life, to enjoy delicious local cuisine, to relax with a glass of homemade wine and to chat in the company of your friendly hosts. In addition to clean air, you can also enjoy numerous other natural attractions such as natural spring water sources and diverse cultural events that happen traditionally in Ptuj. Perhaps then after a short time you’ll be wishing to experience the wonders of nature once more.

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Water and air

During Roman times, the healing thermal waters in this area were already well renowned. Even today, water from the hot springs can relieve many health problems and simultaneously have a positive effect on one’s overall health. The cycling route that run in their close proximity offer you an excellent opportunity to turn off the cycling routes for a while into one of the thermal centres to take advantage of these gifts of nature. Fairly strenuous cycling near the wine growing hills can be capped off with a visit to the pool, sauna or massage parlour so you can finish the day completely relaxed. The choice is yours and among all of the offers, you will certainly find what is right for you.

Sun and wine

As you wander by bicycle over hills overgrown with vines and among cottages and tourist farms, you are sure to be enchanted. You’ll gather new strength as you relax on beautiful sunny terraces from where your view extends off seemingly forever and conjures up wonders that only Pomurje’s flatland vineyards can offer. You can visit the places where the domestically and internationally renowned wines are produced. Amidst an experience of local culinary tradition, you may be able to discover some of the local production secrets from the producers themselves. The secrets will be worth remembering!

Together in triumph

Teambuilding in the form of group cycling is an excellent way to combine pleasant and active leisure activities with the positive effects of employee relationship building in a new environment. With your colleagues, you can experience the various activities offered in areas around the Mura and Drava Rivers. Group games, strolls on Pohorje, rowing boat rides, ferry rides… In a relaxed atmosphere, formed through a combination of traditional cuisine and premium wine, you will get to know your employees or colleagues in a different light. Together, you’ll develop new bonds that can then be transferred back to the normal working environment and certainly have an impact on your future cooperation.

In history

In times gone by, the water represented a key element of the settlement. Towns and smaller settlements always formed near sources of water and only later migrated into the area’s interior. Numerous archaeological remains near the cycling routes along the Mura and Drava Rivers are evidence of that fact. Many of the buildings are still standing including castles, mansions, city walls, churches and other similar structures. Both past and recent history is much appreciated by the locals, as there are and continue to be more thematic museums, which, through the great energy and enthusiasm of their owners, ensure that the history will not be forgotten.

As a couple

Romantic cycling in unspoiled nature along the Mura River and exploration of the old city centres along the Drava River will revitalise your relationship and bring a sense of consistency and harmony. By cycling, you can travel a longer or shorter route amidst the wine-growing hills and choose more intimate atmospheres with culinary delights at the restaurants or refreshment at any of the natural health spas. We are convinced that spending time along these rivers will stimulate your imagination and enchant you both with the wonder of your magical journey.

For inquisitive

A family cycling journey through unspoiled nature along the Mura and Drava River will not only provide fresh air and the discovery of natural and cultural attractions but also the chance to spend much more time together. Since it is primarily over flat areas, the cycling is not too difficult for younger riders, and the natural and cultural attractions are sure to be very interesting and educational for them. You will all surely have so many questions and will be able to discover the right answers to each with the help of the friendly hosts.

Near and far

The entire cycling route along the Mura and DravaRivers can be divided into shorter or longer journeys. People are different; some may prefer exploring the local attractions on long cycle trips amidst the fabulous countryside along the Mura and Drava Rivers. There are many routes offered: more or less difficult, shorter or longer, but they all have in common that they lead you on panoramic rides through the Mura and Drava Rivers villages and towns and present you with locations that you may never have heard of before. If at any time your curiosity takes over you can easily stop at any of the interesting natural and cultural attractions along the path. Or perhaps you will just remember some of those spots for your next visit to the area.

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Project MURA-DRAVA.BIKE Cycling map with detailed description of Mura Cycling Route, which takes you through the area of rich culture and untouched nature, has been made in the framework of Mura-Drava.bike project co-financed from IPA SI-HR 2007-2013 fund. The project, which incorporates Slovenia (Pomurska and Podravska regions) and Croatia (Međimurje and Varaždin counties), aims to develop a common touristic product in the area of cross-border region. The project, whose primary purpose is the development of cycling tourism in the regions and supporting the development of service activities, will relate to the existing Austrian cycle paths along the Mura and Drava Rivers and establish a new cross-border tourist destination on the European tourist map.

Project Partners: Ten institutions and organizations which work in the area of the four project regions have been involved in the partnership. Their experiences on the field of development of tourism and touristic products, cross-border cooperation and engagement in the local environment ensure an appropriate professional basis to the project. Beside the partnership mentioned above, municipalities and counties have also been involved in the project. They have cooperated as affiliated active players and have been recognized as one of the most important for development of sustainable tourism in the involved regions and individual municipalities.

• Regionalna razvojna agencija Mura, d.o.o. • Center za zdravje in razvoj Murska Sobota • Prleška razvojna agencija, giz • Znanstveno-raziskovalno središče Bistra Ptuj • Turistička zajednica Međimurske županije • Regionalna razvojna agencija Međimurje – REDEA d.o.o. • Razvojna agencija Grada Čakovca – Čakra d.o.o. • Turistička zajednica Varaždinske županije • Varaždinska županija • Mariborska razvojna agencija

Publishers Mura-Drava.bike project partners Texts Mariborska razvojna agencija, Znanstveno-raziskovalno središče Bistra Ptuj, Turistička zajednica Varaždinske županije, Turistička zajednica Međimurske županije Photos arhiv Mariborske razvojne agencije, arhiv ZRS Bistra Ptuj, arhiv MO Ptuj, arhiv občine Ormož (Ciril Ambrož), arhiv občine Središče ob Dravi, arhiv Turističke zajednice Varaždinske županije, arhiv Javne Ustanove za upravljanje zaštićenim prirodnim vrijednostima na području Varaždinske županije, arhiv Turističke zajednice grada Varaždina (Darko Gorenak, Hrvoje Hegedušić, Krešimir Geci, Siniša Sović, Teodor Goričanec), arhiv Turističke zajednice Međimurske županije, arhiv Multimedia, arhiv Turističke zajednice grada Čakovca, Milivoj Kuhar Mimi, arhiv Turističke zajednice Koprivničko-Križevačke županije (Mirko Hanžeković), Damir Gobec, arhiv Regionalne razvojne agencije Mura (Aljoša Videtič). Preparation of cartographic presentation Geofoto, Multimedija, s.kolibri Design s.kolibri Printing Tiskarna Ekart Year of issue 2011

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Drava cycling route