As of July 1, Croatia will become the 28th member state of the European Union.
The event comes nearly two decades after the end of Croatia’s war for independence from the former Yugoslavia and after years of sometimes unpopular EU-mandated reforms.
The country of some 4.4 million people becomes the second former Yugoslav state to join the EU, after Slovenia, which was admitted in 2004.
A celebration attended by European dignitaries is due to be held in central Zagreb. German Chancellor Angela Merkel will not be present due to a reported scheduling conflict.
Though a full EU member, Croatia will not immediately be part of the EU's visa-free Schengen zone or use the euro currency.
Croatia’s accession comes with the Adriatic country in the fifth year of recession and with unemployment around 20 percent.
Based on reporting by Reuters and AP