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Maksimir lakes are a inseparable part of total landscape picture of the Park, which can be confirmed by the fact that they were formed parallel with the Park. Highly valuable esthetic and landscape characteristics of lakes, from the time they were formed have an artifact function as well, firstly as ponds, and than as recreational surfaces for boat rides.

During the past six lakes were formed in Park Maksimir, and today we have four left – THE FIRST, THE SECOND, THE THIRD AND THE FIFTH. In 1839 the first lake was built next to Maksimirska street, two years later the second, than the third that is nowadays dried out fourth lake. Artificially formed lakes get their water from Bliznec stream, which is directly flowing into the second and fifth lake. Beside Bliznec stream, we can name other periodical streams but their importance for supplying lakes in comparison with Bliznec stream is insignificant (Mirni Dol and Dahlia).


The first lake is located in the southern part of Park Maksimir. Lake area is about 1.5 hectare, and water depth around 3.30 meters. It was constructed in 1839 in a part of oak forest near Poštanska street (today Maksimirska street) where a small lake used to be. Bishop Haulik expanded it from 1844 to 1845 and constructed a waterfall on the part of stream Bliznec where its opened canal pours water in the lake. Two differently sized islands were built during the construction works. On the smaller one was a small wooden house for swans, after which the island got its name Swan island. On the larger one a sculpture Fisherman from Naples was placed. Both islands are now a part of the ZOO. It gets water from the Second lake, which gets its water from Bliznec stream and occasional from little stream Dahlia that springs in Park Maksimir and dries out in the dry season. Overflow in the lake is located about 1 meter above the bottom sot that the water below overflow hill stagnates.

/ The first lake with arched bridge, postcard from 1900, source: MGZ /


The Second lake is located north of the First lake on 122 elevation. Its area is about 0.7 hectare, and depth from 0.5 to 1.5 meters, and it is the smallest lake in this lake system. Bliznec stream water brings into the lake a great amount of suspended inorganic and organic matter, and in the time of heavy rain a lot of matter from catchments area is drained into the lake.

/ The Second lake with swan house, photo from 1935, source: Ministry of Culture /

The First and second lake are connected with a half-round gutter that flows through the park as a decorative stream from Fakultetsko dobro street to Second lake. From the Second lake water flows in the First lake over a waterfall.


The Third lake is located to the west of the First and Second lakes, and was built in 1911. In the beginning it was partially supplied with water from Piškornica stream that was canalized in 1987, and today by pipelines from the Fifth lake that gets water from Bliznec stream. Its area is around 2 hectares with water face elevation of around +127 meters. Water depth is from 1 to 4 meters.

/ The Third lake, source: archive PIM /


The Fourth lake (former Third) was built by Bishop Haulik in the period from 1853 to 1862, and was located next to the natural flow of Bliznec stream in the northeast part of the Park, opposite of the beehive, but it is empty since 1975. It was located on elevation 135 m, on the area of about 1.1 hectares, and water depth was from 0.5 to 1.0 meters. It got water from the Fifth lake, and the water discharged in Bliznec stream. HRVATSKE VODE is financing its ongoing renovation. Pavilion Birch (Fishermen) cottage will be renovated along with the lake. It used to be located on the north shore of the lake and was destroyed in 1940.

/ Birch cottage on the Fourth lake, photo from 1930, source: MGZ /


The Fifth lake is located in the northern part of Park Maksimir and is the largest lake of Maksimir 's lake system. Its area is about 3 hectares. It is located on elevation 142 m. After demolishment of the old one, a new dam was renovated. Water depth is 6 meters, and it gets water partially from rainfall area Mirni Dol, but mostly from newly renovated supply from Bliznec. On the Fifth lake fishermen from SFC »Bukovac-Maksimir«, carry out recreational-sports fishing.

/ The Fifth lake, source: archive PIM /


The Sixth lake (Pond) was located near army firing range in the valley of Ivančića stream, and was formed by broadening and deepening its basin. Today this pond does not exist any more, but the mentioned broadening can still be seen on the bottom part of dry stream basin. Pond was intended for spawning fish for the purpose of breeding fish fry.

More on Park Maksimir's lakes you can find in publication Jezera u perivoju Maksimir, author Amalije Denich, Zagreb, 2004, published by Public institution »Maksimir«, which can be purchased in the Institution.



In park Maksimir we can find the following streams: BLIZNEC, BUKOVČAK, DAHLIA, MAKSIMIREC, MIRNI DOL, PIŠKORNICA and ŠTEFANOVEC. Below we will mention streams of greater importance for Park's water system.

Bliznec stream springs in the area of nature park Medvednica. It is the most significant stream in Park Maksimir. Catchment area is about 1250 ha, which gives the possibility for forming significant streams that can serve as a basis for feeding Maksimir's lakes with water.

Dahlia stream springs in Park Maksimir, and it flows into Second lake. Catchment area of Dahlia stream is about 43 ha. From the viewpoint of lake supply, it does not offer the possibility of significant flows, especially during the dry season.

Maksimirec stream is located in the western part of Park Maksimir, and it encompasses precipitation catchment area of only 22 ha. It is periodical in character, and during the summer it always dries out. Since it flows through settled are, waters of this stream are polluted and cannot be used for lake supply.

Mirni dol stream springs in the north part of Park Maksimir, it encompasses precipitation catchment area of about 61 ha, and flows into the Fifth lake. Since it has a limited hydrographic catchment area, it is periodical in character, and does not represent a significant contribution for lake supply.

Piškornica stream springs in Gornji Bukovac (Požarinje), flows through the area of Park Maksimir and flows into the Third lake, and finally into city sewage near the First lake. Total catchment area is around 130 ha. Flow of Piškornice stream was deviated by construction of sewage in settlements Požarinje and Gornji Bukovac. Before renovation and reconstruction waste and fecal water were pouring into the Third lake. Dry opened stream basin can still be seen in the Park. In it one can see water only during very heavy rain.

/ Bliznec stream, source: archive PIM /

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Public Institution »Maksimir«, Maksimirski perivoj bb
HR-10000 Zagreb, phone: ++385 (0)1 2320 460, fax: ++385 (0)1 2320 461
e-mail: park-maksimir@park-maksimir.hr