Croatia is a country than can be admired from various perspectives. Some people come here to relax on the sandy beaches, other want to discover the country’s historical monuments. There are also those who want to admire the beauty of nature. For those who are interested in that last option, Croatia can offer plenty of gorgeous places, where you can marvel at the spectacular wildlife.
In this article you will be able to read about some of the most popular and most beautiful national parks in Croatia.
Krka National Park
The Krka National Park, named after the river connected to it, is located along the middle-lower course of the Krka river in central Dalmatia, several kilometers to the northeast from the city of Sibenik. It is mostly intended for scientific, cultural, educational and tourism activities. It is the seventh national park in the country’s history. It gained its current title in 1985.
The Krka National Park is located entirely within the territory of the Sibenik-Knin County and occupies the area of 109 square kilometers along the Krka river.
This national park belongs to the Southern European region. Because of its special location and diverse combination of various types of habitats, it stands out with the exceptionally rich and diverse flora and fauna.
The Krka river is inhabited by 18 species of fish, including 10 endemic species. For that reason, Krka is considered a natural landmark of the highest category. Tthe park is also home to various species of mammals, which include 18 types of bats, such as the Daubenton’s bat, and the endangered European otter.
The Plitvice Lakes National Park
The Plitvice Lakes National Park is located in the central part of Croatia, approximately 140 kilometers away from Zagreb, not far from the country’s eastern border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was established in 1949.
The Plitvice Lakes complex consists of two groups of lakes connected to each other – the so-called
Upper Lakes and Lower Lakes, which are powered with a system of surface waters and ground waters. The total length of all the lakes is 8.2 kilometers, and their total surface is approximately 200 hectares.
Researchers have confirmed the presence of approximately 1100 species of plants, including many endemics.
The dominant species of trees in the forests surrounding the lakes is the common beech. Another important species are the fir trees. In the park there are also countless species of animals, including birds, such as the black stork, the eagle owl, and several species of woodpeckers, as well as mammals, such as wolfs, foxes, badgers, brown bears and boars.
Paklenica National Park
The Paklenica National Park is the second national park in Croatia, established on
October 19th 1949, several months after the Plitvice Lakes National Park.
On July 7th 2017, the Paklenica National Park, along with another nature reserve was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. This park consists of approximately 2031 hectares of forests. The uniqueness of the pristine beech forests in the national parks of Northern Velebit and Paklenica is based on their originality, geographical location and age.
The major phenomena of the Paklenica National Park are its forests and geomorphological features. In the nearly non-forest southern part of Velebit in Paklenica there is great wealth of forest communites, and a place occupied by black pine forests.
Paklenica has the largest preserved forest complex in Dalmatia of approximately 2000 hectares. About 55% of the park is covered with vegetation, while the remaining 45% is bare karst relief.
The vegetation of the park mostly consists of beech forests, black pine forests and mixed forests.
Kornati National Park
The Kornati National Park is an island archipelago of 89 uninhabited islands, islets and reefs. It is a labyrinth of stony islands, and its inhabitants has to battle the greedy elements to survive.
The Kornati National Park is located in the northern part of the region of Dalamtia, to the southwest from the city of Zadar.
The reasons to visit the Kornati National Park are as diverse as the marine life living here. Here are some places you cannot miss while visiting Kornati:
Strunac Bay – this is a gorgeous bay in the very heart of the Kornati archipelago. In this are, just 25 kilometers away from Murter, is an island of stone, figs, olives and the clear blue sea. Here, you can not only enjoy spectacular views, bu also try some excellent food and meet nice people.
Telascica – this is a designated nature park, full of wildlife and sea creatures. Here, you can enjoy an authentic Croatian meal in a restaurant and admire the breathtaking views.
Levrnaka Bay – this is a stunning bay located on an island with a 117-meter high peak, which offers great views of the surrounding area. Here, you can visit the only sandy beach in the entire Kornati archipelago called Lojena.