Plitvice Lakes National Park: Chasing Waterfalls in Croatia
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The first time I found out about Plitvice Lakes National Park was from a brochure that I got as a teenager. I never thought that I will visit it myself but I kept the brochure on my desk and I was daydreaming so many times about visiting this breathtaking place.
16 green emerald lakes and 90 waterfalls are so difficult to describe, you simply have to experience this magnificent and unspoiled nature.
I have visited Plitvice National Park two times and the place is simply packed. I even read somewhere that more than 1.5 milion people visit the park each year but it is so big so you can still take awesome pictures without someone photo bombing you.
Some Useful Information about Plitvice Lakes National Park
Opening hours: 07:00 – 18:00
Admission: It all depends on the season, but the tickets are not more than $30. You can find the prices on their official website.
When to go: Plitvice Lakes are breath taking all the time, so no matter the season you should go.
How much time you need: Plitvice Lakes are great to visit for a day tour. So I would say that you need at least 5 – 6 hours to see the most of it. You can book guided tours or you can go on your own. The paths are very well marked so there is no way you`ll end up lost.
Get a map: At the entrance when you purchase the tickets get a map, so you can see where you want to go and how much you want to see.
The Lower Lakes and The Upper Lakes
There are 2 entrances at Plitvice Lakes National Park. The first entrance will take you to the Lower Lakes which are more serene and give you a calming feeling, and the second entrance will take you to the Upper Lakes where all the spectacular waterfalls are, and they make the area more wild. I would suggest you take Entrance 1 and make your way up the Upper Lakes.
Getting to Plitvice Lakes
You can visit Plitvice Lakes from many cities in Croatia. The closest city is Zadar, then Zagreb but you can find day trip tours also from Split, Trogir and Rijeka.
We were staying in Zagreb and there are buses running regularly to and from the National Park. The thing that I liked the best was that the buses were always on time.
You can also find great day tours on TripAdvisor if you want. In many cases this turns out to be the best way because some of them have arranged pick-up where they come to your hotel and get you back again when the tour is over. This is more convenient and it means you do not have to carry your heavy backpack with you just to find out later that you have to change buses. Find the best tours on TripAdvisor and save your sit today.
Once you are in the park there are couple of trails you can follow and you can go on foot or by ferry. The entrance fee covers the tickets for transportation around the park.
Where to stay
We were staying in a hostel in Zagreb both times but you can also spend the night close to the National Park and explore it for couple of days, because let`s face it you cannot see everything in a day. Both times I went to Plitvice Lakes was during the summer so next time I am visiting I will definitely go during the winter because judging from some photos that I have seen it is mind-blowing.
If you are planning a trip to Plitvice Lakes National Park you can check whether your dates are free here:
The first time I visited the place I took a guided tour and it was great. I learned some facts and the person was really nice but the next time I just wanted to wander on my own and enjoy the nature.
There are many advantages to tour Plitvice Lakes with a group. Usually the tour guide is a local and you do not have to worry about anything.
You should take advantage of TripAdvisor when it comes to guided tours, because there you can find the best ones. On the other hand, you can read about other people`s experiences, and usually they are honest so you cannot go wrong. What I love the most is when you search a place on TripAdvisor you can come up with so many ideas of what to do and see in a given place.
Things to bring
Even if you are visiting Plitvice Lakes during the summer it is possible to rain, so you should have a rain poncho with you. Another important thing is mosquito repellent and the most important of all, good walking shoes.
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