Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

Sorry for the delay – We have been so busy and I have run out of steam.

Tuesday 8th November 2022
Time for another big day out!
Our plan for today is about an 16-18km walk around the Plitvice Lakes National Park. We will start from our accommodation adding an extra 1km at the beginning and end of the day just for good measure and to save about $15 in parking.

Believe it or not, we left our apartment at 7.59am. It was only 5°C and very chilly. The sun was up but not high enough to give warmth. Anyway, we were on our way. A 1km walk to the entrance of the Plitvice Lakes National Park, for a day of waterfalls and beautiful lakes. We had a bonus reduction in ticket cost as someone yesterday sold us their 2nd day tickets for half price. Ticket price was 80.00kn each and they sold them to us for 10euro.

Once we arrived we headed down to the first waterfall, it was so high, about 80m I think. It was magnificent, we continued walking all day between the upper and lower lakes, passed many waterfalls, and series of waterfalls, on the most amazing boardwalks weaving between the lakes and waterfalls. It was the most beautiful national park. There is about 22km of boardwalks and trails  in the park, we managed to walk about 25km as we doubled up on a couple of paths. The boardwalks and bridges are made of chestnut timber and the maintenance of these is continuous. They work on the trails daily and replace about 2km or boardwalks annually. They are quite amazing, they have a real rustic feel about them, no stiletto heels here as the slats do not butt up to each other at all and they are quite haphazard in their placement. The boat connects the Lower and Upper Lakes and enables you to get the 2km to the Upper Falls section without walking around the lake. As you probably already know, we walked the whole park, and extra later in the day to take advantage of the low light for better photos but we did do a couple of trips on the boat just to experience this view as well. All in all it was a lovely day. We got home at about 5pm, so we were on the go for 9 hours with only a short stop for lunch plus the 2 x 15min boat trips. The walking was own pretty good trails and boardwalk with only about 500m ascent and descent over the 25km, so although we walk almost continuously, to was a difficult walk.

David struggled with the day as he had seen so many photos during his research that he was a little disappointed as the trees had lost there leaves and rather than beautiful green forests or autumn colours surrounding the lakes and waterfalls it was bare trees which impacted the beauty markedly. We were probably just 2 weeks too late, but it was still beautiful all the same. He also didn’t manage to see a lynx, pine marten, wolf or bear. We did see a few birds though. After the big day we just had an extra km down hill to our home at the edge of the park. It was a beautiful little apartment again, we have managed to book the most incredible places our entire time away. There has been only a couple that were a little tired but even these had there  good points.

We have one more day in Croatia before we head to Ben in Germany.

Plitviče Lakes National Park is a 295-sq.-km forest reserve in central Croatia. It’s known for a chain of 16 terraced lakes, joined by waterfalls, that extend into a limestone canyon. Walkways and hiking trails wind around and across the water, and an electric boat links the 12 upper and 4 lower lakes. The latter are the site of Veliki Slap, a 78m-high waterfall. The first trails were constructed on the Upper Lakes in 1888, and then on the Lower Lakes in 1894.