Sunday, October 2, 2011

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

It's almost two hours (135 km / 83 miles) by bus from Zagreb to Plitvice Lakes National Park. Founded in 1949, it is the largest national park in Croatia and the oldest in Southeast Europe.

It is about 297 sq km (+73,000 acres) and in 1979 it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The park is open all year round and receives over 900,000 visitors annually.

Plitvice is absolutely stunning!!
There are 16 lakes (12 upper lakes and 4 lower lakes) that interconnect through a series of waterfalls, all surrounded by heavy woods and mountains. It is a great place to go for a hike and lose one's self in the scenery.

The water is so clear that you can see the fish swimming. Depending on the minerals in the water and the angle of the sun, the water's color ranges from azure blue to green.

To date, 1,267 different types of plants have been cataloged in the park.

There are different paths you can take to cover the park. I elected to go for trail "H" which is the 4 - 6 hour path. From the entrance I rode the shuttle train to the upper lakes area. I hiked down to where a shuttle boat dropped me off on the other side of the main lake. Then I hiked through the lower lakes canyon and up by the great waterfall. Then it was up along the east side of the canyon until I made it back to the starting point.

I did it in about 3.5 hours. I should have taken the 8 hour path but I didn't want to take a chance on missing the last bus back to Zagreb.

Oh well, there is always next time.
I wonder how much of the lakes freeze? I would love to see the park in the winter with all of the snow and ice.


  1. Did you know that the German western movie "Vinnetou", which is hugely popular in the Czech Republic was filmed there?

  2. There is no chance of big ice in running water and very bad path in extreme January around few frozen waterfalls.

    But huge chance to more pleasant experiences is in film of this area
    EN Treasure of Silver Lake
    DE Der Schatz im Silbersee
    CZ Poklad na Stříbrném jezeře

    or other films with Indian Winnetou.