Most of you probably heard about the Kuang Si waterfalls in Laos, or the Ban Gioc waterfall in Vietnam, or even of Samuc Champey in Guatemala. But have you heard about or planned to visit Plitvice lakes? This beautiful natural site is located in the heart of Europe, in Croatia and is part of UNESCO World Heritage.
Since I have heard about the for the first time (actually since I saw it on Instagram when my friends went there) I really wanted to visit! The blue of the water, the green of the forest, the waterfalls, the beautiful viewpoints… it all just appealed to me. Here is why I recommend visiting Plitvice lakes.
How to get there
First thing is, that those lakes are located in the middle of Croatia and there is not much else around. So you really need to make it a point to visit them on purpose. I chose to stop here on my way from Zagreb to Split. It’s around two hours drive from Zagreb and 4,5 hours from Split. If you have a car, it’s great, if not, do it like me and hop on a Flixbus. There are several buses going from Zagreb to Plitvice every day, even on Bank Holidays. I saw three different buses for Split as well. The tickets can be purchased online or at the bus station. Even Plitvice has a small bus ticket office, but I wouldn’t risk it being closed.
There are three large hotels right by the Entrance 2 and a lot more around the area (although you will need a car). Best is to go to the Plitvice lakes website and book your hotel through it. Some of them offer free entrance to the park with the booking. At least when I was there that was the case.
If you are not spending the night here, there is one storage space at each entrance to the park. The one at Entrance 2 was free of charge.
You have a choice between trails of 2-3 hours, 4-6 hours, and 6-8 hours. Of course, it all depends on your way of visiting. I did the one of 4-6 hours in 3,5 hours and I wasn’t running.
If you are very short of time, and you really need to choose, go for the lower lakes, close to the first Entrance. The water has a brighter blue color, the tall waterfall and beautiful viewpoints offer a memorable experience. The upper lakes are very beautiful as well, they are calmer, wilder, darker. There are many ways to visit Plitvice Lakes. The decision is up to you.
Bonus advice: go there off-season, when the tickets are around 10 Euros. The high season price (45 euros!!!) from June to September is ridiculous and honestly, even if the place is beautiful, not worth it.
Here are some pictures that will make you buy your tickets:
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