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National parks


There are 8 protected National parks in the Republic of Croatia:

 


National park Brijuni

Brijuni are a group of two larger and twelve smaller islets along the West coast of Istria, near Pula, with the total area of only 7 km2. Both archipelago and the surrounding sea are under protection.

The Brijuni Archipelago is known for its preserved Mediterranean vegetation, which is partly landscape and partly a safari park. The archipelago is noted for its valuable cultural heritage from the Roman and Byzantine times.

Due to its extraordinary beauty, the Brioni Islands have been, for over a hundred years now, a favourite tourist destination of world statesmen and aristocracy.

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National park Kornati

Kornati Islands archipelago is the most indented island group in the Mediterranean, situated in North Dalmatia, not far from Šibenik. The archipelago includes 140 uninhabited islands, islets and reefs with the area of only 70 km2.

In the immediate vicinity of the Kornati National Park, there is another jewel of protected nature in Croatia - the Telašcica Nature Park, which includes a wide and deep bay of the same name on the neighbouring Dugi otok (Long island).

The Kornati islands are noted for their varied unusual forms and extraordinary relief structure, and especially the high cliffs. This area is very popular for sailing.

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National park Krka

Krka is a river in Dalmatia; springs out at the western foot of Dinara Mountain and flows into the sea near Sibenik; length 72.5 km.

The National Park may be reached from Skradin, by a boat operated by the National Park, which goes upstream to Skradinski Buk. Another access to the Park is by car, to the entrance in Lozovac. From Lozovac - buses operated by the National Park take visitors to Skradinski Buk. The waterfall Roski Slap may be reached by car via Miljevci or via Skradin.

The cruise from Skradinski Buk to Roski Slap includes also Visovac Lake, located between these two wonderful waterfalls. The tour includes also the sightseeing of Visovac and the Franciscan monastery on the islet. The monastery may be visited individually. In that case it is necessary to take the monastery ship on the Miljevci side of the coast of Visovac Lake, below the village of Bristane.

The Park visitors may see the water mills in which wheat is ground by using the millstones and tasty bread made of such ground wheat. There is also an ethnographical collection. There are several catering establishments within the park.

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National park Mljet

The Island of Mljet is situated in the far South of Croatia, west from Dubrovnik, Croatia's best known summer resort. A national park of the same name includes a western part of, according to some, the most beautiful island in the Adriatic.

The Park is characterised by two deep bays which are called lakes due to their very narrow passages to the open sea (Veliko and Malo jezero/the Great Lake and the Small Lake), and lush and diversified Mediterranean vegetation.

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National park Paklenica

Paklenica includes the most attractive parts of southern Velebit, including its highest peaks. Two impressive canyons of Velika (Great) and Mala (Small) Paklenica, vertically cut into the mountain from the sea to the peaks are the main attraction of the park.

In a relatively small area of the national park, there are several unusual carst forms, several caves, and extremely rich and varied flora and fauna. Among steep rocks, Anica Kuk is the most popular destination of Croatian alpinists.

In the upper parts of the canyon, a larger forest area has been preserved on the littoral side of Velebit. This, in addition to the existence of several vegetation and climate zones from warm Mediterranean to harsh mountain zones on the top of Velebit, largely contributed to it that this area was among the first in Croatia to be proclaimed a national park, first provisionally in 1928, and then definitely in 1949.

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National park Plitvicka jezera

Plitvicka jezera (Plitvice lakes), are the most known Croatian national park and are entered in the UNESCO Register of World Natural Heritage.

Sixteen lakes interconnected with waterfalls created by deposition of travertine, a special kind of limestone, constitute the main attraction of this unique park. The park includes the spring of the Korana River in the area surrounded by dense forests of beech, fir and spruce, partly in the form of primeval virgin forest.

Apart from the lakes and forests, the Park is ornamented with several caves, springs, flower meadows, and is inhabited by brown bear, among other animal species. The popularity of this park is also in the use of special vehicle for transporting visitors (panoramic trains and electric boats), and is conveniently situated at the main road from Zagreb to Dalmatia.

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National park Risnjak

Risnjak, is a forested mountain massive not far from the city of Rijeka, named after lynx (ris in Croatian), its best known inhabitant.

The National Park of the same name stretches from 300 to 1,500 m above the sea level. Due to its position at the junction between the Alps and the Dinarides, and from the Mediterranean to Pannonia, almost all types of forests, as well as many plant and animal species are gathered here, in a relatively small area.

The beauty of the forest, carst phenomena, beautiful springs and magnificent views attract many hikers and other nature lovers to Risnjak.

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National park Sjeverni Velebit

North Velebit (Sjeverni Velebit) is the youngest of the Croatian national parks, established in 1999. It comprises the most attractive and, in terms of nature, the most valuable areas of the northern part of Velebit.

A large number of attractive sights are concentrated in this predominantly mountainous park-magnificent carst forms of Hajducki and Rožanski kukovi, unique botanical garden and Lukina cave, one of the longest in the world.

Croatian mountaineers consider this area the greatest jewel among the Croatian mountains. Due to its remoteness from the main roads, this area is somewhat less visited, but this only increases its mystic and primeval natural ambience.

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