Visiting Plitvice Lakes National Park

In a country overflowing with natural beauty, Plitvice Lakes is Croatia's crown jewel. 

Plitvice Lakes National Park (Plitvička Jezera in Croatian) lies in central Croatia. The densely forested park is centered around 16 interconnected turquoise lakes linked by bustling rapids and stunning waterfalls. The rest of the park is rich with towering beech, fir and spruce trees shadowing the hiking trails with thick canopies.

Plitvice Lakes National Park Croatia

While it is possible to see a good chunk of the park in a few hours, you'll need most of a day to explore the park in its full glory. There are 9 recommended trails, which take between 3 and 12 hours. There is definitely a trail for everybody even if you only have a couple of hours to spare or are not an avid hiker.

The trails are made up of wooden bridges and rocky paths that weave in and out of the forest over the lakes and by the waterfalls. Depending on the trail you choose, you may even take a bus or boat ride to get from one side of the park to the other.&

Due to Plitvice's unique habitat and pristine untouched beauty, it became a national park in the 1940s and gained protected status by UNESCO as a world heritage site in 1979.

Plitvice Lakes National Park Croatia

How to visit Plitvice Lakes National Park

Where it is

Plitvice National Park is located in the center of Croatia, off the local road 1 (not to be confused with the A1). Distance to park from major cities:

  • 470 km from Dubrovnik

  • 300 km from Pula

  • 180 km from Rijeka

  • 280 km from Split

  • 130 km from Zagreb

  • 155 km from Zadar

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When to go

One of the best things about visit Plitvice is that there is no bad time to go. It's beautiful year round. In the fall, you'll see the leaves changing color. During the winter, the waterfalls turn to ice. In the spring, everything is lush and coming back to life.

July and August are the busiest months. If you intend to visit the park during this time, avoid the crowds by visiting first thing in the morning before the tour buses arrive, or in late afternoon/early evening after the tour buses have left for the day. Another good way to avoid the crowds is to follow the trails backwards in case you arrive at the same time as large groups. 

Opening hours

The park is open everyday, including Sundays and holidays. Hours vary depending on the time of year. 

Ulaz 1 (Main Entrance)

  • July/August – Daily from 8am to 8pm
  • April to June, September – Daily from 8am to 5pm
  • October to March – Daily from 8am to 4pm

Ulaz 2 (Entrance #2)

  • July/August – Daily from 8am to 7pm
  • April to June, September – Daily from 9am to 5pm
  • October to March – Closed

The current opening hours for the park can be viewed here.

Plitvice 4

How to get there

  • By car 

    To reach Plitvice by car:

    • If coming from Zagreb – Take the A1 south/west. Exit the local road 1, which will take you all the way to the park. Once you get nearby, you'll see signs directing you to the entrances. 
    • If coming from Rijeka/Pula/Istria – Take the A5/E65 north/east. Exit the A1/E71 south. Exit onto the local road 42, which will take you all the way to the park. Once you get nearby, you'll see signs directing you to the entrances.
    • If coming from Split/Dubrovnik  Take the A1/E71 north. Exit the local road 25. In Korenica, turn left onto the local road 1. Once you get nearby, you'll see signs directing you to the entrances.
  • By bus

    Buses run to the park from most cities in Croatia. For the latest bus schedules, visit the main bus station (Autobusni Kolodvor) in your city. Be aware that it is difficult to do a day trip to the park by bus, as most major cities are a minimum of 2 hours away. 

Plitvice 23

Admission prices

One Day Tickets

Type of visitor  Price per person

Jan – Mar, Nov – Dec

April – June, Sept – Oct

 July – Aug

Adults 55.00 kuna 110.00 kuna 180.00 kuna
Groups of adults * 50.00 100.00 160.00
Students 45.00 80.00 110.00
Groups of students * 40.00 70.00 100.00
Children 7-18 years 35.00 55.00 80.00
Groups of Children * 30.00 50.00 70.00

* 15 or more persons – mandatory written announcement arrival through the Department to achieve sales price 

Two Day Tickets

Type of visitor Price per person
  Jan – Mar, Nov – Dec April – June, Sept – Oct July – Aug
Adults 90.00 kuna 180.00 kuna 280.00 kuna
Students 70.00 130.00 210.00
Children 7-18 years 55.00 90.00 140.00





0 Kn / hour


7 Kn / hour


70 Kn / day

Car trailer

70 Kn / day


70 Kn / day


All admission and parking prices provided by Plitivce Lakes National Park, and are current as of the date of this post. For the latest pricing information, visit the park's web site

View more pictures of Plitvice Lakes National Park here

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Expat in Croatia

Sara is an American expat based in Split. After globetrotting between New York, Amsterdam and California, she moved to Croatia in 2012. Sara's blog Expat in Croatia is a guide for foreigners living and traveling in Croatia.