Started the day at 9 AM. Entered the park through entrance 1, took trail B. It was a drizzling day but still an amazing place. Finished the trail back at entrance 1 and left for Zadar. It was am amazing drive with still some snow on the roads.
Day 1: A trek around the Plitvice lakes
Route C begins by exploring the lower lakes from where you can take a boat ride and further continue the hike to the upper lakes. Route H is similar but is just in the opposite direction which would mean that, you finish hiking the upper lakes first and then after the boat ride you are onto the lower lakes. Both these routes are approximately 8km – 9km long requiring an easy 6hr – 7hr time period to finish. Another important thing to consider while choosing the program would be that Route C involves hiking upwards initially and later it comprises of hiking on flat boardwalks whereas Route H is in the opposite direction keeping the tough part for the end. Although, route H being in the opposite direction means that you would be walking against the traffic making it a pleasant experience for you as you would be away from the crowds. However, during the peak season this might not work out as there is just as much traffic on both the routes from either entrance. Both the hikes are easy and are suitable for all.Which comes to the big question, Should You Start at Entrance 1 or Entrance 2?I recommend starting from Entrance 1, especially if you get there first thing in the morning. By starting from Entrance 1, you are walking slightly uphill most of the way but you are walking towards the waterfalls. That means that you always get to see them in front of you and you are done with the slightly tiresome part of the hike initially. If you walk in the opposite direction, you will actually walk past some of the waterfalls and have to keep turning around to look at them. It’s not a big deal but it is a nicer experience to walk towards the waterfalls and explore them that way.
Where is Plitvice LakesPlitvica is located in central Croatia. Driving to this place is the most common way of getting here. Alternatively you can also opt for buses. FlixBus and Arriva are popular operators in this part and are recommended as they are typically neat and clean and most often are on time. The nearest cities to Plitvica are the following.Zagreb: 135 km, 2 hours 15 minutesZadar: 136 km, 2 hoursSplit: 260 km, 3 hoursFrom any of the places above a day trip is possible to Plitvica, however avoid day trips during the summer months as by the time you reach the national park all the tours would have begun and it would mean that you could be stuck with large groups of tourists and not getting to enjoy the place. For the best experience, book an overnight accommodation and begin super early the next day.
Croatia, the jewel of the Adriatic was on our radar for the longest time. However, due to something or the other, it did not happen… until last summer (2017 that is), when we finally succeeded in planning a road trip from Zadar to Plitvice and then down to the south to Dubrovnik. In this blog, we cover our day trip to the Plitvice National Park – one of the amazing natural wonders you will ever see!!The Amazing WaterfallsAt Plitvice, the National Park is centred on a group of sixteen lakes fed small rivers and streams. The speciality of these lakes is that are cascaded back to back, therefore, giving rise to wide but low height waterfalls between the lakes. The water descends about 160 m from the topmost lake to the bottom one, where the water exits to the Korana River. As a result, there is a diversity of flora and fauna in this region, which resulted in declaring this region a UNESCO World Heritage site. At the National Park, there are two main entrances – Entrance 1 and Entrance 2. Entrance 1 is in the north end of the park and is closer to the Lower Lakes, the lower end of the 16-lakes cascade, while Entrance 2 is somewhere in the middle of the cascade. Between the two entrances and further lie the hilly terrain, with the lakes and other smaller water bodies lying around them. Hikers and other nature lovers have the option to hike along several trails: some of which run from Entrance 1 to Entrance 2 and vice versa. The National park proposes a bunch of hiking routes with varying difficulties, length and approximate time of hike. Some of the wider lakes also have boats crossing them, and a few routes also include the option of cutting short the walk by choosing a short boat ride. We would definitely suggest the first-timers to take up one of these routes, as they pass through the interesting and amazing features in the park. And maybe also choose a route that includes a boat ride to experience Plitvice from another point of view…To stoke your curiosity further, here are some intriguing facts and pictures of the waterfalls from our trip...