The wider Zagreb area has been continuously inhabited since the prehistoric period, as witnessed by archaeological findings in the Veternica cave from the Paleolithic and excavation of the remains of the Roman Andautonia near the present village of Šćitarjevo.
Picturesque former villages on the slopes of Medvednica, Šestine, Gračani and Remete, maintain their rich traditions, including folk costumes, Šestine umbrellas, and gingerbread products.
To the north is the Medvednica Mountain, with its highest peak Sljeme (1,035 m), where one of the tallest structures in Croatia, Zagreb TV Tower is located. The Sava and the Kupa valleys are both to the south of Zagreb, and the region of Hrvatsko Zagorje is located on the north side of Medvednica. In mid-January 2005, Sljeme held its first World Ski Championship.
From the summit, weather permitting, the vista reaches as far as Velebit Range along Croatia's rocky northern coast, as well as the snow-capped peaks of the towering Julian Alps in neighbouring Slovenia. There are several lodging villages, offering accommodation and restaurants for hikers. Skiers visit Sljeme, which has four ski-runs, three ski-lifts and a chairlift.
The old Medvedgrad, a recently restored medieval burg was built in the 13th century on Medvednica hill. It overlooks the western part of the city and also hosts the Shrine of the Homeland, a memorial with an eternal flame, where Croatia pays reverence to all its heroes fallen for the homeland in its history, customarily on national holidays. The ruined medieval fortress Susedgrad is located on far-western side of Medvednica hill. It has been abandoned since the early 17th century, but it is visited during the year.
Zagreb occasionally experiences earthquakes, due to the proximity of Žumberak-Medvednica fault zone. It's classified as an area of high seismic activity. The area around Medvednica was the epicentre of the 1880 Zagreb Earthquake (magnitude 6.3), and the area is known for occasional landslide threatening houses in the area. The proximity of strong seismic sources presents a real danger of strong earthquakes. Zagreb experiences around 400 earthquakes a year, most of them being imperceptible. However, in case of a strong earthquake, it's expected that 3,000 people would die and up to 15,000 would be wounded.