Erasmus Experience in Zagreb, Fausto in Croatia

Why did you choose to go to Zagreb, Croatia?

The truth is I chose it as there weren't any other places left. Even so, I think it was a good choice. First of all because I was one of the first Spanish Erasmus students that went to Croatia.

That year there were 3 Erasmus students in Zagreb and I was the only one from my university. Not being surrounded by Spanish people meant I could improve my English and settle in better.

Also, as it's cheaper than Spain, the Erasmus life is much more comfortable.

How long is the grant? How much money do you get?

Mine was for one semester, from the 1st October to 18th February.

What's the student atmosphere like in Zagreb?

Truth is, it's really good. There's loads of students and loads of things to do. The problem is that there are different campuses dotted around the city. University life isn't centred around the university. Although, there are two massive uni halls that both have a great atmosphere.

Would you recommend the city and the University of Zagreb to other students?

The city, yes. As for the university... it's not hard to get good marks and if you want to learn, you can, just not at the same level as in Spain, that's how I found it anyway.

There's a lot of freedom for Erasmus students and that's always a good thing. I've got to say as well that I went on the first year of Erasmus (three years ago) and there still weren't many English classes, so I couldn't go to class. Although that might seem to be a problem, it actually wasn't.

What's the country's food like?

Delicious. If you're not a vegetarian, you'll love it. The coffee is amazing. The uni restaurants are really good and really cheap with your uni card. Food from the supermarket is a bit pricey.

I 100% recommend the tangerines. So so so nice.

Was it hard to find accommodation in Zagreb?

The uni offers you a place in the halls. They are cheap, you live with other students, they aren't a pain the backside and they put you right in the middle of it all.

Depending on the room you could get quite an old one or a really good one. They are usually shared between two people and you might have to share a bathroom with another room.

How much does it cost to live in Zagreb?

I paid 100€/month for the halls (including internet, water, electricity). Food, with the uni card, is really cheap. Three years ago it was 1€ or 1. 50€.

How's the language? Did you go to any university classes?

I didn't go to any and I regretted it. The university runs free classes. Although, the young people speak English and you can easily go and live there without speaking Croatian.

Also, a lot of people know some Spanish because of the telenovelas. In the language department a lot of people speak Spanish. The 5th floor of the library is dedicated to Spanish books.

What's the most economical way to get to Zagreb from your city?

In the past from Madrid it was with Spanair with a stop off in Barcelona. I also did one with a stop off in Prague but I can't remember which company I used.

What places would you recommend for going out in Zagreb?

According to a lot of people I know it's changed quite a bit. I liked Purgeraj, but I don't think it even exists anymore. There's also some clubs near the river that are always changing.

There's a party pretty much every night in Zagreb, you just have to go with the locals. Also, the girls are usually really kind to foreigners. The boys, not so much.

And going out to eat in Zagreb? Can you give us soem of your favourite places?

On Kalciceva street or somewhere near the centre there are loads of great places, but I never really paid much attention, so I don't remember many names.

I ate a lot at the uni, it's the best way to save money. As for the best uni restaurant (menza), I would say it's the engineers' one.

And what about for cultural visits?

The city centre is beautiful, but it doesn't take long to see everything. For a cultural visit I recommend doing a roadtrip around Croatia. I did it and absolutely loved it. The most beautiful city, Split.

Also, try to visit old Yugoslavia. An amazing place is Sarajevo. Travelling to Bosnia is a great adventure too.

The best way is to go by train. They are really slow, but you see everything. I also recommend Mostar in Bosnia. Half of the city is Croatian, the other half, Arab.

Bosnia is fascinating. So is Serbia.

Any advice you want to give to students going to Zagreb in the future?

Make Croatian friends, talk to them about anything you want: sex, homosexuality, war, racism, catholicism. It's really interesting to hear their perspective on these sorts of things. It's really interesting to discuss Tito, a dictator that is pretty much hated by everyone.

There's a lot of cinema, concerts, etc. It's really interesting to have a look around all these things, even though foreign students don't do it too much. You'll also feel safe, it's a really safe city.

I also recommend going to see an Ice Hockey game (an amazing experience, especially if it's an international game) or a handball game (the stadiums will be full).

Not much more to say really... good luck and have fun!

Share your Erasmus Experience in Zagreb!

If you know Zagreb as native, traveler or as exchange student... share your opinion on Zagreb! Rate different characteristics and share your experience.

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