Croatia’s Plitvice Lakes National Park is a breathtaking UNESCO World Heritage site, known for its cascading waterfalls, crystal-clear lakes, and lush greenery. With just 48 hours to explore this natural wonder, it’s essential to make the most of your time. To help you plan your visit, we’v divided it into ten cool things that you absolutely must do. From hiking scenic trails to capturing stunning photographs, get ready to immerse yourself in the beauty of Plitvice Lakes National Park.

1. Marvel at the Spectacular Waterfalls

The park is home to a series of awe-inspiring waterfalls that will leave you in absolute awe. As you navigate the network of wooden footbridges and pathways, you’ll encounter magnificent cascades at every turn. Among the most impressive is Veliki Slap, the park’s tallest waterfall, with water plummeting down an impressive 78 meters. Another must-see waterfall is Skradinski Buk, where a series of cascades tumbles gracefully over seventeen steps. The sheer power and beauty of these falls will undoubtedly leave you mesmerized and provide endless photo opportunities.

2. Explore the Upper Lake Trails

Embarking on a hike along the trails surrounding the upper lakes is an absolute must. The upper lakes offer a more serene setting, with picturesque landscape and fewer crowds. The trail meanders through lush green forests, offering breathtaking views of tranquil lakes, and allows you to experience the park’s natural wonders up close. Be sure to follow the designated paths and wooden footbridges to protect the fragile ecosystem. Don’t miss the opportunity to capture incredible photographs of the cascading waterfalls and crystal-clear turquoise lakes along the way.

3. Take a Boat Ride Across Kozjak Lake

Hop on a boat ride across the stunning Kozjak Lake, the largest and deepest lake in Plitvice Lakes National Park. The boat ride not only provides a unique perspective of the picturesque surroundings but also acts as a convenient mode of transportation between the upper and lower lakes. Sail across the tranquil waters, surrounded by lush greenery and towering cliffs, creating unforgettable memories. The peacefulness of the lake combined with the breathtaking scenery makes this boat ride an absolute must-do during your visit.

4. Discover the Lower Lake Circuit

The lower lakes are equally as captivating as the upper lakes, with a distinct charm of their own. The lower lakes circuit will take you through a maze of wooden footbridges and pathways that wind their way around enchanting lakes and waterfalls. Explore the enchanting surroundings of Lake Milanovac, where you can gaze at the crystal-clear waters teeming with fish. Cross the scenic Galovac Lake, boasting extraordinary colors that shift throughout the day, making for stunning photo opportunities. By venturing along the lower lakes circuit, you’ll be immersed in the park’s beauty from a different perspective, uncovering hidden gems along the way.

5. Witness the Wildlfe

Plitvice Lakes National Park is not only a natural oasis for stunning landscapes but also serves as a haven for diverse wildlife. Keep your eyes peeled for rare bird species, including the white-throated dipper and the black stork, soaring high in the skies. If you’re lucky, you may even spot some of the park’s resident brown bears, wolves, or lynx. The park’s rich biodiversity offers a unique opportunity to experience nature at its best, making it a must-visit destination for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.

6. Capture the Perfect Photographs

For photography enthusiasts, a visit to Plitvice Lakes National Park is a dream come true. With its breathtaking landscapes, vibrant colors, and diverse wildlife, the park offers a myriad of opportunities for capturing stunning photographs. Whether you’re a professional or an amateur photographer, you’ll be spoilt for choice with the park’s enchanting waterfalls, mirror-like lakes, and verdant forests. Be sure to bring your camera gear and take advantage of the park’s many viewpoints and hiking trails to capture that perfect shot.

7. Savor Authentic Croatian Cuisine

After a day of exploring, take the time to indulge in traditional Croatian cuisine. You’ll find several restaurants and eateries near the park, offering a wide range of local delicacies. Tuck into mouthwatering dishes like “štrukli” (traditional rolled pasta filled with cheese), “Janjetina” (spit-roasted lamb), or sample the local delicacy of freshwater fish sourced from the park’s lakes. You’ll also find numerous cafes and bakeries where you can grab a quick snack or enjoy a cup of traditional Croatian coffee. Exploring the culinary delights of the region is an essential part of immersing yourself in the Croatian culture.

8. Go Cycling in the Park

If you’re looking for an alternative way to explore the park and cover more ground, why not go cycling? Plitvice Lakes National Park offers bike rental services, allowing you to traverse the park’s biking trails at your own pace. Cycling provides a unique and exhilarating experience, enabling you to discover hidden corners and breathtaking viewpoints. Enjoy the freedom of pedaling through lush forests, alongside shimmering lakes, and discover the park’s wonders from a new perspective.

9. Relax and Unwind in Nature

While Plitvice Lakes National Park offers numerous activities and attractions, it also provides the perfect setting to relax and unwind amidst nature’s tranquility. Take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and find a peaceful spot near one of the lakes to simply sit back and take in the beauty around you. Listen to the soothing sound of the waterfalls, breathe in the fresh air, and recharge your batteries surrounded by stunning scenery. Whether it’s enjoying a picnic or finding a secluded spot to read a book, immersing yourself in the park’s peaceful ambiance is one of the coolest things to do during your visit.

10. Stay Overnight and Experience the Park After Dark

To truly make the most of your 48 hours in Plitvice Lakes National Park, consider staying overnight in one of the nearby accommodations. This will allow you to experience the park’s enchantment after the day-trippers have departed, providing a unique and uninterrupted encounter with nature. Enjoy sunset walks along empty pathways, witness the stars twinkling above the lakes, and revel in the serenity of the park undisturbed. Spending the night within Plitvice Lakes National Park will undoubtedly be an unforgettable experience, leaving you with cherished memories that will last a lifetime.

In conclusion, Plitvice Lakes National Park offers a wealth of captivating experiences in its natural splendor. From marveling at the majestic waterfalls to capturing stunning photographs, exploring the tranquil lakes, and experiencing the park’s incredible wildlife, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you choose to hike, cycle, or sail across the lakes, make sure to immerse yourself fully in the beauty that Plitvice Lakes National Park has to offer. With its diverse range of activities and breathtaking landscapes, a 48-hour adventure in this Croatian national treasure will undoubtedly leave you yearning for more.


– Plitvice Lakes National Park official website:
– Croatia Tourism website:
– Lonely Planet: