A multitude of heritage is to be found in this city known as a centre of transport, commerce and culture.
Nagykanizsa has always played an important role in the lively trade from the Adriatic to the Alps.
Its heyday was probably the 19th century when it developed from being the market centre of the region, into its cultural and administrative centre by the end of the century. Following the construction of the railway network it developed into an important rail hub. Several banks and savings institutions, then factories and schools were established. During World War I Kanizsa became a city of barracks, its public utilities were developed and its roads upgraded. After the war and as a result of the Trianon peace agreement it lost much of its surrounding market area and thus became isolated.
Visible development has taken place over the past three decades during which new industries have been established here, businesses started up, and public and residential buildings completed one after the other.
Nagykanizsa was designated a regional administrative centre in 1850 and made two unsuccessful attempts in the 19th century to become county seat. Currently it is a recognised county city with several surrounding settlements belonging to it.