• In 1920 when military government branded and ordained horses for the military in the villages, the mutiny broke out. The mutineers robbed the church and Bistrica traders. The robbers were caught and punished mildly. They were judged by poet Dragutin Domjanić who apologized for that in one of his poems to Mother of God and he asked her for her forgiveness. 
  • Count Ernest Karlo Schippenbach and countess Henrika Sermage, nobleman Antun Rubido and Sidonija Erdödy (opera Prima Donna), dr Ljudevit Gaj and Paulina Krizmanić have wed there.
  • Perish house (1753) was for a while a meeting-place of Croatian reformers. Ljudevit Gaj, Stanko Vraz, JJ Stroßmayer have frequented it, as well as the musicians like Zajc, Lisinski and Kirschhofer.
  • The tradition of pilgrimage to Marija Bistrica started when the statue of Bistrica Mother of God was found Bistrička on 16 July 1684, but the history of Marija Bistrica isn’t connected only with the statue of Bistrica Mother of God.
  • During the World war II Krsto Hegedušić, whose unfinished frescoes can be seen in the basilica, was staying here. Frescoes were supposed to show: the Birth of Christ, the Escape to Egypt and the Way of the Cross. Frescoes were not finished because it wasn’t recommendable to stay in Marija Bistrica during the war.
  • The first school in Marija Bistrica was mentioned in 1590 and then in 1699, but there are no correct data on how long did they last. Since 1852 the school has been working ceaselessly.
  • After the abolition of serfdom in 1848, the municipality was founded; in 1900 the building of municipality government was built.
  • It is difficult to talk about the beginnings of music and the use of musical instruments in Marija Bistrica because music was nurtured from ancient times. The first Bistrica souvenirs had been musical instruments. With founding of volunteer Fire department in 1889, the Wind orchestra started to work. When Cultural club “Lovro Ježek” was founded in 1975, the Wind orchestra with folklore section and tamburitza orchestra have been participating in almost every manifestation in Bistrica.
  • The foundation-stone for St Peter’s chapel has been placed down by beatus Aloisius Stepinac and it was built in 1940.
  • On 15 August 1971 Marian International Congress was held and lead by special Pope’s envoy Cardinal Franjo Šeper. The multitude of 150 000 pilgrims was gathered at the congress, which was unseen in the communist countries at that time.
  • On 3 December 1971 on the Conference of Bishops in Yugoslavia, the Bishops declared sanctuary in Marija Bistrica to be Croatian National Sanctuary of Bistrica Mother of God.
  • On 24 and 25 May 1974 the first National Marian Congress was held in Marija Bistrica.
  • On 1 October 1978 the missionary of love, beata Mother Theresa and Bengal missionary abbot Ante Gabrić visited Marija Bistrica.
  • On 9 September 1984 the second magnificent pilgrim meeting – the National Eucharist Congress (NEK 84) was held and it was lead by Archbishop Cardinal Franz Koenig, a special  envoy of Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Franjo Šeper. The preacher was Archbishop Cardinal of Zagreb at that time Franjo Kuharić. 
  • On 20 June 1987 the Holy Chair proclaimed the holiday of Bistrica Mother of God on 13 July as the holiday of Croatian Catholic Church.  
  • On 3 October this small place was visited by the Holy Father the Pope John Paul II, he blessed it and, on the request of archbishop of Zagreb Monsignor Josip Bozanić, he beatified Aloisius Stepinac, a former Archbishop of Zagreb and Bistrica pilgrim.

mb cip 01 mb cip 02 mb cip 03 mb cip 04

Summer in Marija Bistrica

The manifestation Summer in Marija Bistrica offers various cultural, spiritual, sports and other entertaining activities during the summer with an emphasis on the 13 July – the celebration of the festivity of Saint Mary of Bistrica and the Day of the municipality and parish Marija Bistrica. Summer in Marija Bistrica encompasses various subcategories of events and manifestations such as: the Cycle race Four chapels, the Meeting of the retired people of Krapinsko–zagorska County, the Happy Children's Day, Bistrica's Door Ajar, By mountain beltway around Marija Bistrica, Bistrica night, Procession with candles from Marija Bistrica to Vinski vrh, the Folklore Days Laz, the Cycle race Selnica – Gusakovec, Sports Summer in Bistrica. The manifestation lasts from June to August.


mb lj 02

Advent in Marija Bistrica

Advent in Marija Bistrica,a place of centuries-long tradition of pilgrimage, old trades and cultural events has always been celebrated and marked in a special way. First organized manifestation Advent in Marija Bistrica was held in 2010 and since then it has been held every December. Advent is marked by occasional cultural-artistic program, Christmas fair and numerous workshops for children and adults. Advent at the national shrine is special and its atmosphere is in the sign of spirituality, family, cultural and traditional values.

mb adv 01
mb adv 02
mb adv 03

Waiting for New Year at Midday

In the very end of rich Advent programme in the small place of Marija Bistrica where is situated the most famous shrine to Virgin Mary, every year there is New Year’s party at midday. So if you want to wait for New Year twice in the same day, be sure to come to Marija Bistrica. The cheerful programme starts at 10:30 and it includes music performances and occasional catering offer.

mb ng 01
mb ng 02
mb ng 03
mb ng 04

Where are we

Marija Bistrica is situated only 40 km from Zagreb and it is connected with the capital city with frequent bus and railway lines.

International railway and bus station are situated in Zagreb, as well as international airport, which means that Marija Bistrica is very well connected with the rest of the world.

Bus connections – Bus station Zagreb (35 km), Zlatar (10 km), Stubičke Toplice (25 km)

    Railway connection from Zlatar Bistrica (7 km) and you can get there by bus or taxi 

    International airport in Zagreb is directly connected with many European cities.

    If you are coming by your own car from the direction of Zagreb, the easiest way to Marija Bistrica is by motorway A2 Zagreb-Zabok towards the north of Croatia. Drive approximately 27 km and take the exit Zabok-Oroslavlje. Turn right on regional road number 24 to Bedekovčina and drive 10 km. Then turn to road 24 for Zlatar Bistrica and drive 6 km to Marija Bistrica.

    If you are coming from the direction of Macalj, follow the motorway A2 to the south. Drive for about 15 km and turn on the exit Zabok-Oroslavlje.