5 Best National Parks in Croatia – Visiting Guide 2024
With a stunning coastline and beautiful cities lining its shores, Croatia is a popular tourist destination that lures hundreds of visitors every year. The dreamy islands, mesmerizing Adriatic Sea, and picturesque towns will undoubtedly leave you speechless! Read the following information and find out all you need to know before visiting the magnificent National Parks in Croatia!
Why should you visit Croatia?
Croatia offers many exciting things to do and attractions to see while visiting it. Whether you want to explore the charming towns along the Adriatic Coast, admire the natural beauty of the stunning national parks, or simply discover the iconic city of Dubrovnik. There is something that will capture the heart of every tourist in this mesmerizing country!
The best time to visit Croatia
A majority of tourists head to Croatia during the months of July and August to catch the nice weather. However, the busiest months aren’t always the best time for visiting the country. We highly suggest avoiding the high season because the crowds are inevitable. Also, entrance fees for National Parks are much more expensive during that time. With pleasant weather, fewer crowds, and warm temperatures, June and September are the best months for visiting national parks in Croatia.
How to visit National Parks in Croatia?
If you want to explore National Parks in Croatia in the best way, we highly recommend going on a guided tour. That way, you will be able to uncover the secrets of Croatian’s oldest national parks and see the hidden places that you probably wouldn’t find on your own. Although, if you want to explore the natural wonders of Croatia at your own pace, we suggest purchasing a ticket.
5 Best National Parks in Croatia!
We have hand-picked the five best national parks in Croatia that are worth your visit! Take a look at our selected destinations and choose the tours and tickets that work best for you!
1. Krka National Park
National Park Krka is a natural attraction that everyone must visit while staying in Croatia. Situated along the beautiful Krka River, it consists of 7 cascading waterfalls and a unique ecosystem. This national park is one of the two natural landmarks in Croatia that are home to both lakes and waterfalls. To help you save time and money, we found the best value guided tour of Krka National Park. Take in the breathtaking beauty of this natural jewel while learning all about its history accompanied by an expert tour guide.
Krka Waterfalls Day Trip From Split
Live Tour Guide
Book a full-day trip to Krka National Park and discover Croatia’s most beautiful natural spots. On your way to the Krka Waterfalls, you will be able to explore a medieval town, Primošten. While visiting Krka, you will also have an opportunity to see the famous waterfall, Skradinski Buk, which lies on the southern side of the national park.
Nice day trip
I would 100% recommend this tour. Ivana, the guide was amazing. Very friendly lady who enjoyed guiding us. Once you arrive at Krka you have the choice on exploring the park on your own or to partially see the park with her, I recommend going with her. You will learn a lot of interesting things and in addition you will have enough time to walk the path in the park on your own afterwards. Ivana also gave us many tips and explanations throughout the ride in the bus. The bus is comfortable and fresh, the air conditioning was always on.
2. National Park Plitvice Lakes
National Park Plitvice Lakes is one of the most famous destinations in Croatia, and for a good reason. This beautiful natural wonder attracts over 1.3 million visitors a year that come to marvel at its unmatched beauty. Located in the heart of Croatia, Plitvice National Park consists of 16 cascading lakes that are connected by mesmerizing waterfalls.
The entire park area is large enough to spend hours just soaking in the beauty of waterfalls, lakes, and forests surrounding them. While visiting Plitvice Lakes, you will be able to explore everything from the hiking trails, caves, and countless waterfalls. If you want to make your visit even more exciting, you can take a quad ride or go kayaking across the mesmerizing Upper and Lower Lakes. Also, there are many cafes and restaurants where you can take your time and relax before you continue your Plitvice adventure. One thing is for sure. You will have a fantastic time at Plitvice Lakes National Park!
Choose one of our carefully selected Plitvice Lakes Tours if you want to explore this magnificent natural oasis to the fullest! Tours are available from different cities, including Zagreb, Split, Trogir, Omiš, Dubrovnik, and Zadar. Also, to get the most out of your visit, we suggest reading our visiting tips for Plitvice Lakes.
3. Kornati National Park
The beautiful Kornati Islands are located in the northern part of Dalmatia, right next to the breathtaking coast of Zadar. The islands are shaped like droplets and form a surreal scene on the Adriatic Sea. They are known for their paths, fields, and charming stone walls, making them a popular tourist destination.
Several options are available for visiting these stunning islands, but a guided tour is the most recommended option. That way, you will be able to discover many hidden spots that you probably wouldn’t find on your own.
The Kornati Islands are accessible only by watercraft. That’s why we highly recommend going on a Kornati Boat Trip from Zadar!
Kornati Boat Trip from Zadar
Live Tour Guide
On a Kornati day trip from Zadar, you will have an opportunity to explore the many cliffs of the national park while sailing among the stunning islands. Go on a walking tour across the hiking trails and marvel at the panoramic view of the Kornati archipelago. After that, you will be able to relax on the sandy beach and enjoy lunch in the cozy restaurant inside the national park.
Book Kornati Boat Trip
4. National Park Risnjak
Risnjak is a national park located in the region of Gorski Kotar, a well-known forested area in Croatia. This national park is a favorite destination for climbers and hikers to explore. While visiting the national park Risnjak, you will be able to enjoy strolls on a circular walkway that traverses through areas of vivid vegetation and pine trees carpeted with wildflowers. Also, don’t miss the opportunity to marvel at the impressive view of the Adriatic sea and surrounding mountains at its highest point. You can even see Slovenia from there as it is close to the border!
5. National Park Mljet
The Mljet National Park was established in 1960 and remained Croatia’s first protected marine area. Croatia has several breathtaking national parks, but Mljet Island is unique in its own way and definitely worth visiting! It is one of the largest Adriatic islands in the entire Dalmatia region. In addition to being home to the largest pine forest, saltwater lakes, and ancient ruins, this island is renowned for its unspoiled ecosystem deep beneath the sea’s surface. While visiting national park Mljet, you will have an opportunity to discover magnificent coastline, many cycling tracks, and marvelous Benedictine Monastery!
FAQ – Best National Parks in Croatia
How many national parks are in Croatia?Croatian’s protected territory includes eleven nature parks, eight national parks, and two strict reserves. Croatia’s national parks are Brijuni Islands, Risnjak, Plitvice Lakes, Northern Velebit, Paklenica National Park, Kornati Archipelago, Krka Waterfalls, and Mljet.
Do you need a ticket to enter the national parks in Croatia?Yes, you will need a ticket if you want to discover the untouched natural beauty of Croatia. We highly advise you to purchase your ticket online and in advance. By doing so, you will be able to plan the rest of your stay in Croatia to the fullest. Also, if you want to learn all about the history of the famous Croatian national parks, we recommend going on a guided tour.
When is the best time to visit Croatia’s National Parks?It depends on which national park you will be visiting. If you want to explore the Velebit mountains, winter is the best time to visit. However, if you want to see the safari park of the Brijuni national park, we recommend planning your visit during the summer or spring.
What else should I visit while staying in Croatia?There are many natural wonders and breathtaking cities that you should explore while spending your vacation in Croatia. Besides discovering the mesmerizing national parks in Croatia, you should set aside at least one day to visit the breathtaking city of Dubrovnik. There is a wealth of history, a beautiful natural setting, and a wide range of activities to enjoy! If you want to discover this city to the fullest, we recommend choosing one of the best Dubrovnik Tours!
See more Plitvice Lakes Tours!
The best way to experience the natural beauty of the oldest national park in Croatia is by going on a Plitvice Lakes Guided Tour! If you want to explore this natural jewel accompanied only by your friends and family, there is also a private tour option.
expert local guide
Plitvice Lakes Private Tour
Experience the beauty of Plitvice Lakes National Park on a private guided tour that offers a perfect combination of boat rides and walks. Marvel at the stunning Upper and Lower Lakes. Admire the highest waterfall in Croatia, Veliki Slap, towering at an impressive 78 meters high. Enjoy the benefits of skip-the-line access, so you can spend more time exploring and less time waiting.