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  • Meredith Peters

The Beautiful Plitviče Lakes National Park in Croatia

First impressions of the Plitviče Lakes National Park in Croatia are the vibrant colors. The trees are so green and the lakes are so blue, making it a stunning place to capture gorgeous nature and wilderness photos.

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Plitviče Lakes National Park is a massive forest reserve in central Croatia with 16 terraced lakes and a collection of waterfalls flowing into a limestone canyon. Scenic walking trails give you a view of the falls from many angles and an electric boat connects the upper and lower lakes, including Veliki Slap, an impressive 78 meter-high waterfall. The walk trails go over the water and walking across them is a dramatic and inspiring experience. The park is vast and if you see the photos of the aerial views, you will realize how massive the area is.


There is also a cave to explore. Suplijara Cave is an optional route that is signposted and I recommend checking it out if you have time. Past the cave, you will come to Lake Kohjak, which is one of the favorite areas for many travelers.


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When taking photos of the falls, set your camera to a slow shutter speed to create that dreamy blurry water effect you see in many photos. You will have a billion waterfall photos at the end of the day and will need to spend some time editing to find the best ones.



Swimming is prohibited in the park. You can spend the whole day at the park and get a lot of hiking in, but if you prefer a short visit, consider spending at least three hours there. Don't forget comfortable walking shoes, a water bottle, sunblock, bug spray and sunglasses.


Since 1979 the park has been a UNESCO World Heritage site. That has helped protect the park's wildlife, including fish, deer, bears, wolves, boars and rare species of birds. Your entrance fee also helps preserve and maintain the park.


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You can find accommodation at villages on the way to the lakes, with Plitvica Selo and Jezerce being the closest. Grabovac and Korana are also great spots for an overnight stay and base for your explorations of the lakes. There are a few hotels and campsites near the park if you feel adventurous and really want to connect with nature.


Most people visit during the summer months or fall and spring, but winter is also a stunning time to see the national park. Note in winter, some areas of the park are closed. Each season colors the park differently, changing the way it looks dramatically. Summer, with its sunny charm, brings a delightful sight as fish gracefully swim in the turquoise waters beneath the boardwalk. Get there early to avoid the crowds.



Drop me a line to find out more about traveling to Croatia and including the Plitvice Lakes National Park, of course. The whole country is stunning, and this park is a fine example of the gorgeous natural sites you can see during your fabulous European vacation.

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