Best Places to Visit in Croatia
Since the turbulent times of the Balkan Wars in the 1990s, Croatia has transformed its war-torn image into one of the most popular holiday resorts in Europe. With glorious beaches, lush national parks and enchanting medieval cities it really does have something for everyone. And of course the beer is cheap too. Just in case you’re not convinced already, here are some of the best places to visit in Croatia.
Plitvice National Park
If the charm of the Old Towns and beaches becomes too much, you can’t miss out on Plitvice National Park. A natural wonder, it’s one of the most beautiful locations in Europe and is famous for its waterfalls, lush green forest and serene lakes. The park’s sixteen interconnecting lakes are divided into both upper and lower clusters, and its lakes formed by natural dams are notable from ranging in distinct colours from grey to turquoise blue and green.
Many visitors to Croatia enjoy island hopping, and the most unmissable is surely Hvar. The entire island is perfumed by the scent of the lavender fields and its stunning beaches and spectacular vineyards really are something else. After exploring secluded coves and hiking through the scenery, enjoy the marble stone streets and Gothic Palaces of the thirteenth century Old Town.
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When it comes to Roman ruins, most tourists flock to the Italian capital to get the history fix, but Pula has it all without the crowds. One of its major draws is the huge amphitheatre where the gladiators would at one time battle it out. Pula has been governed by various powers over the centuries so expect a wealth of cultural influences in this southern Istrian town.
You just couldn’t visit Croatia without visiting its most popular tourist destination – Dubrovnik. Known as the “Pearl of the Adriatic” the walled city is famous for its UNESCO heritage Old Town, orange rooftop houses, cobbled streets, impressive churches and, of course, its clear blue skies. Just outside of the city you’ll also find beautiful beaches such as Lapad and Banje. Understandably though the city does draw large crowds so visit in the shoulder season for the most pleasant experience.
If the crowds of Dubrovnik prove too much to handle, Zadar is an excellent option. An impressive three thousand years old, this beautiful city is located right on the northern Dalmatian Coast so you can combine sightseeing in the picturesque Old Town with sunbathing and swimming on some of Europe’s best beaches. A magnificent combination of medieval and Roman ruins, the Old Town is home to numerous churches, impressive ruins and delicious seafood. It’s also an ideal base for visiting Krka and Plitvice National Parks.
Krka National Park
Known for its gushing waterfalls and crystal clear pools, Krka National Park in Central Dalmatia is a dream for any photo enthusiasts. Best of all, you can get really close to them on one of the numerous winding trails in the park. When the sun is shining you can also take a dip in the Krka River beneath the falls. Krka National Park is easily reached from Split or the charming town of Zadar.