There’s a place people usually go when they do a tour of the Balkans in Europe. And the Plitvice Lakes National Park is a place truly like no other, delighting the visitors at the very first glance. Maybe it’s because people usually don’t expect to see such a fascinating sight or it’s just the charm of this place that can put a spell on you at the very first time you lay your eyes on it.
Nevertheless, the Balkan is full of destinations that can take your breath away, however there’s only one Plitvice National Park that is waiting to be explored.
Plitvice Lakes National Park Croatia
Located in Croatia, close to the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, there’s a national park widely known for its mind-blowing colors of lakes and spectacular natural surroundings. The Plitvice Lakes National Park was founded in 1949 and is known to be one of the oldest national parks in Southeast Europe. Plitvice Lakes also tends to be the largest national park in Croatia, which in 1979 was added to the UNESCO World Heritage register.
Plenty of ways to enjoy Plitvice Lakes National Park
It’s truly amazing how nature can play with colors and forms and at the end come up with such fascinating creations. Well, this national park is of no exception; the way the green leaves of the trees and the grass gently touch the surface of the lakes, or how majestically the waterfalls slip down the rocks, all this is worth the journey even if you live on the other side of the world.
This national park welcomes millions of tourists throughout the year and still you can find peace and serenity in any time of the year you decide to visit it. “A stunning beauty”, “Gorgeous Place” and “Incredible” are just a tiny part of the comments the visitors of this park shared with their close ones. And if you visit it, you’ll see what they actually mean. The trails and wooden bridges leading the way throughout the woods and above the lakes of this park are keeping footsteps that retell the stories of some wonderful adventures. Wouldn’t you like to be a part of them?
Meet the stunning natural attractions
If you’re not sure what to expect when you decide on visiting this national park, then you have to at least have in mind the following things. The park is known for its beautiful, turquoise lakes that tourists can’t get enough of photographing. The origin of the lakes comes from various rivers located in this area. Two of these rivers are Crna Rijeka and Bela Rijeka. There are 16 lakes which can be seen in this park, 12 of them belonging to the group of Upper Lakes, while the other 4 belong to the group of Lower Lakes. The two largest lakes are Prošćansko jezero and Kozjak, which together they cover about 80 percent of the overall water body area.
What also is quite impressive, are the grandiose waterfalls spread throughout this national park. At the end of the Lower Lakes the highest waterfall is located, known as the Large Waterfall, over which the Plitvica River falls. At the Upper Lakes, the highest waterfall is known to be the one called Galovački buk. Both of these waterfalls are wonderful and inspiring.
The park also has wide spread woods and rich biodiversity. The lovely wooden paths lead the way to canyons and hidden caves, to a wonderful world composed of elements of nature. The park is known to be located in the mountainous karst area of central Croatia.
How to get to Plitvice Lakes National Park
The access to this national park is easy, allowing you to approach it by car, a bus or even a bike. You can find the directions and get to the entrance on your own or you can sign up for a tour that is organized on a daily basis in some of the nearby cities or the capital of Croatia – Zagreb.
The price for the ticket is quite modest for such a nice place; however it varies depending on the category of people you belong to and the period of the year you plan on visiting this fascinating place. The prices are presented in Croatian Kuna – the national currency of the country and can be found on the following webpage.
Take a tour of the park from different perspectives
You can decide to walk through the wonders of this spectacular national park or even take a boat ride for a totally different experience. The rides vary depending on your wish to take part in the short or long line. The long lines start on every 30 minutes.
Another way you can enjoy the beautiful Plitvice Lakes is by cycling on the special trails in the park, created specifically for this purpose. However, have in mind that even though you’re in a well-organized national park, you are still in a natural surrounding where anything can happen so make sure to wear adequate equipment.
If you’re not a fan of walking or cycling and you just want to sit back and enjoy the ride, then we advise you to take a ride with the sightseeing (panoramic) train. You may have to pay something extra for the ride, but you will see many spectacular sights which will make you realize that it all pays off.
How to prepare for a visit
There are plenty of tourists interested in visiting Plitvice Lakes, but there is no need to buy a ticket beforehand. However, it is nice to check the weather before going there. Tourists are usually lining up during the warmer times of the year since the nature is awake then and they won’t have to worry if they get wet by getting closer to the magical waterfalls. During summer tourists even take an enjoyable swim in certain places of the park, so make sure to take your swimsuit along.
However, this park is also nice to visit in winter as well. Even though everything may be slippery and cold, the way the nature interacts with the untouched snow is just perfect.
It is enough to type the name of this national park on Google to immediately fall in love with the photos of this place. It simply looks unreal and mesmerizing. Make sure to plan your visit to Plitvice Lakes National Park and don’t forget to take your camera along – there won’t be any memory in your camera card left once you start capturing the beauty of this national park.