If you are located Downtown Zagreb you can get there by public transportation without a problem. Take the tram line 6 which will bring you to the area of Zaprude and from there you can take bus number 295 to Jakusevec. The bus will drop you off at the entrance of Hrelic.
Hrelic is open every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday from 7am to 3pm but a lot of the vendors pack up earlier so I suggest coming as early as you can. Wednesdays are much less busy than Sundays, but that also means there are fewer vendors - so you can either deal with the crowds and many vendors, or fewer crowds and fewer vendors / opportunities to find unique things. We prefer Sundays.
Hrelic is sectioned-off into a few different areas based on similar products. One section is specifically dedicated to car sales (buying and selling), but this section is only open on SATURDAYS AND SUNDAYS. If you want to sell your used car, just drive to Hrelic, pay a small fee (7 EUR / 50kn) and park your car in the sales lot for the day for prospective buyers to look at.
If you want to buy a car, you can find almost any make or model, even many oldtimers which are fun to just go and have a look at. There is also a section dedicated to car parts (used and new), anything from tires and hubcaps, to engines and other under the hood gadgets
One of the sections at Hrelic is dedicated to new clothes, shoes, purses, sunglasses (with plenty of ‘fakes’), toys, gadgets, kitchenware, tools, etc. I usually skip this section and look more at the following:
The main section (and my very favorite section) of Hrelic is reserved for the miscellaneous, unique, weird, quirky items. This part is in the middle of the flea market and it’s just rows and rows of people selling everyday things that they have found, or inherited and are trying to sell off.
The key here is going early. You will get your own “rectangle” concrete block or sectioned off spot to sell your things on, and it costs just 10kn. I’ve never sold anything there personally, but it would be fun to try one day. It’s like a massive garage sale - who doesn’t love garage sales? The best day to sell would probably be on a Sunday, as Sundays get the most traffic (but it might be the hardest to secure your spot) so again, go early.
My best advice is to not pay the asking price for anything! This is the rule there so if you buy something at full price, the vendor will definitely have a lucky day. Lots of vendors are experienced in sales and they pump up their prices in the beginning, knowing that hard bargainers will come along, and they’ll get a fair price in the end.
After a long day walking around, I’m sure you’ll be hungry. You can buy pastries like burek, potato pie and Croatian traditional barbecue dishes like cevapi, sis - cevapi, raznjici, etc. but my friendly advice is to skip it. It smells good and it seems tempting but one time I ate cevapi and got food poisoning. Maybe it was a coincidence, but I’ve decided not to eat at Hrelic again.
I just wanted to add a quick note because my wife said it would be a good idea to mention for all of the other ladies eager to go to Hrelic. There are just a couple of toilets in an old “shed” type of structure. There is also no toilet paper, so in other words, use the facilities at home before you leave and save yourself the ultimate “Hrelic experience.”
Often times, there are Gypsy brass bands who walk around and play their instruments. It’s very lively and fun to listen to and adds a great vibe to the market. In this way, the band tries to advertise themselves to play at upcoming weddings. They are well known as great musicians whose purpose is to fire up the atmosphere at big events like weddings and parties.
Hrelic is one of the best flea markets in this part of Europe and shows a different side of Zagreb. There’s nothing like it downtown, so venture out if time permits to see this special spot and maybe find yourself a gem of a keepsake from your time in Croatia.
Written by Ivan