Scientifically known as Homo sapiens Neanderthalensis, the Krapina prehistoric man was discovered all the way back in 1899, when geological and paleontological research started on Hušnjakovo hill in Krapina. Excavations, supervised by professor Dragutin Gorjanović-Kramberger, a well-known Croatian geologist, palaeontologist and paleoanthropologist, lasted six years (1899 – 1905). His works significantly contributed to European and global science of the fossil man.
Some nine hundred human fossil bones were found in the cave's sandstone deposits, which were 8 meters high. This is the largest and most abundant collection of Neanderthal people collected at a single locality. The bones belong to the fossil remains of several dozen individuals, both male and female, from 2 to 40 years of age.
Numerous fossil remains of cave bear, wolf, elk, giant deer, woolly rhinoceros, wild buffalo, and many other animals were found. Over a thousand pieces of stone tools from the Palaeolithic age, or Early Stone Age, discovered at the site, speak of the material culture of Krapina Neanderthals. The age of this rich paleontological locality corresponds to the period of about 125,000 years ago.
The interpretation of Krapina findings resulted in different theories, which are subject of numerous discussions today. After centuries of existence, it is particularly attractive because of its paleontological importance and the large number of fossil specimens. The site is protected as the first paleontological natural monument in the Republic of Croatia, and is listed as one of the richest Palaeolithic habitats of Neanderthals in Croatia and Europe.