Top 10 places you have to visit in the area of Plitvice Lakes

Visiting Plitvice Lakes National Park is always a great idea. Plitvice is always interesting and with each new visit you can further explore its hidden charms and beauties.

It is very difficult to say how much time is needed to visit Plitvice. If you are planning a trip to this magical place, keep in mind that all the recommendations, everything you read or hear actually depends on your wishes. With that in mind, you can see the Plitvice Lakes even in just one day, but then your visit will be a bit more paced. If you are a person who prefers a relaxed approach to research and adventure, then it is recommended that you spend two or three days in the National Park area, so that in addition to visiting the park, you have time to explore the gastronomic offer and the best restaurants in Plitvice, so that you can leave your car at parking and enjoy untouched nature, and so you can visit some of the interesting things this region has to offer. Buy tickets for Plitvice online in time, because tickets are limited.

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1. Rastoke

Rastoke is a small village 30 minutes from Etno Garden. They are interesting because they are also called “Little Plitvice”. The Korana river passes through Rastoke, which connects Rastoke with the Plitvice Lakes. It is an interesting fact that if you are looking for refreshment on hot summer days, this river is the right destination because swimming is allowed in it. Rastoke is a truly charming village, where you can spend a pleasant afternoon with the sounds of enchanting waterfalls.

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2. Speleon – Underground Heritage Center

If you like history and scientific facts, Speleon is a place you should definitely visit. Inside this center you will find the remains of animal fossils from the Ice Age. Fossils and their hyperrealistic replicas will take you thousands of years into the past, to the time when hyenas, lions, rhinos and other large animals lived in this area. This modern building will surely leave you breathless.

Plitvice Lakes Top 10 places you have to visit in the area of Plitvice Lakes 03 Foto Dinko Neskusil
Photo By: Dinko Neskusil

3. Barac Caves

Peek into the underground world. Barać’s caves are one of the special places in Croatia because they are home to numerous subterranean endemic species, and their history goes back to the beginnings of human civilization. When you come to visit, the guide will give you a flashlight and will lead you through paths, halls and bridges surrounded by famous stalactites and stalagmites, etc. Explore the impressive beauty of the underground that nature has created over thousands of years. Guided tours last 30 minutes and must be booked in advance.

Plitvice Lakes Top 10 places you have to visit in the area of Plitvice Lakes 04 Foto Josip Durdov
Photo By: Josip Durdov

4. Ranch Dolina Jelena

If you are an animal lover, this is the right trip for you. Dolina jelena ranch is owned by the Bićanić family, who have been making people happy for years by allowing them access to their beautiful deer. On the large ranch, deer roam freely, and you can take photos or feed them. We really can’t decide whether the scenes are more beautiful in winter or summer. The tour lasts an hour and a half, and you need to book in advance.

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5. Zipline ‘Pazi Medo’

Now comes something for lovers of adventure and adrenaline. Dare to fly! The total length of the rope to which you are attached is over 1,700 meters, which makes this zipline one of the longest in the world. The maximum speed you can reach is over 120 km/h in a favorable wind. In addition to the zipline, this sports and recreation center has the possibility of renting bicycles, a rock climbing wall, runways for gliding, a disc golf course and the like have been built. Zipline is located 40 minutes drive from Etno Garden

Plitvice Lakes Top 10 places you have to visit in the area of Plitvice Lakes zip 06

6. Velebit bear sanctuary

Can you believe that there is a place that serves as a haven for little bears? Quite interesting, isn’t it? The Velebit Bear Sanctuary is the first such orphanage in Croatia that helps preserve the brown bear species. Abandoned young bears who lost their mother due to tragic reasons found a home in it. It also raises awareness of the importance of biological diversity by educating the local population as well as visitors. Volunteers from all over the world work in the orphanage, and we think this is a unique opportunity for you to see something like this.

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If you are willing to drive a bit longer, we also suggest:

7. Nikola Tesla Memorial Center

Not far from Plitvice, in the town of Smiljan, the ‘father of modern technology’, Nikola Tesla, was born. This memorial center was opened on the 150th anniversary of his birth, and covers more than 13 thousand square meters. In this place you can see a combination of history, science and art. In the center you can see replicas of his inventions and we definitely recommend visiting it.

8. Northern Velebit National Park

If you like hiking and spending days in nature, this place is a must for you. This National Park abounds in forests, karst phenomena and diverse plant and animal life. Inside the park there are also the strict reserve Hajdučki and Rožanski kukovi and Lukina jama – one of the deepest caves in the world. Also there you can see the Visibaba Botanical Reserve with endemic plant species.

9. Aquatika

The only freshwater aquarium in this part of Europe. In these 25 aquariums, we can see more than 100 species of freshwater fish, of which as many as 40 are endemic species. The entire setup of the aquarium is designed to follow the flow of a typical karst river. Aquatika is located in Karlovac, about 80 kilometers away from Plitvice.

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Last on this list, but not least. Certainly the closest, and your car can be in the parking lot all the time.

10. Etno Garden

Located in the small village Plitvica selo, far from the hustle and bustle but very close to the largest waterfall of the National Park called “Kozjak”. After long walks and sightseeing, sometimes it is best to relax and enjoy. Sit comfortably in our garden, soak up the sun’s rays and try the finest traditional food that this region has to offer. Our beautifully decorated rooms will allow you to take a break from everything, and our restaurant will awaken all your senses. As always, we prepare the best dishes from the Plitvice Lakes area for you, such as “Peka”, pork from a spit, goulash, apple strudel, vegetarian dishes and much more.

See you at the Plitvice Lakes.

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