Since we arrived so late the night before we got out of having to pay for a Plitvice National Park parking day pass which can be pricey during the high season. The entrance to the Plitvice National Park was about a 5 minute walk from our car so we were already off to a good start. The price for students is about 11 Euro and it includes bus rides through the park and one ferry ride. Online we found advice on which was the best route to follow but if you want to avoid the massive crowds follow our route and you will have the best views of the park with the sun always in the perfect spot for photos:
Start early to avoid the crowds and begin your day by taking the bus from Parking Lot 2 to STR 3
Hike to P2 and check out the small rivers, lakes and stunning views from the highest part of the park.
From P2 take the ferry to P3 and stop for lunch. The kitchen doesn’t open till 11:30 so be the first in line at 11:15 and you can have first pick at the meat fresh off the grill.
By noon the park is packed so try to make your way to the Big waterfall before 1pm when the sun is at the highest point in the sky to see a cool rainbow effect in the waterfall.
Close out the hike by walking the rest of the way to Parking Lot 1 and hop on the bus back to Parking Lot 2
The whole hike should take you 6 hours, give or take a few, and plan to be back by 3pm because the heat is brutal in the summer.
We left the park at 3pm and were set on reaching the coast before sundown. We arrived in Zadar much faster than we expected so we stopped in the city center to explore a little bit. We enjoyed a couple of Zadar’s famous pizza sandwiches and made it to the beach house before 8pm just in time to witness our first beach sunset of the trip.