We arrived at the Park before 9 but there was already a 20 m queue at the tickets office. We had a coffee and waited for our turn. The Plitvice National Park was recognized by UNESCO World Heritage in 1979 for its natural beauty and biodiversity. When you enter the main entrance the view is breathtaking. You can see waterfalls, lakes and rivers surrounded by green mountains. The visitor can choose between 4-5 alternative routes according to time available. We chose a medium route and enjoyed the beautiful landscape. A big number of trouts of different sizes lives in the lakes and fishing of course is not allowed! With so much water and humidity it is no wonder that the plantation in the area is so thick. The footpath follows a nice route by the waterfalls and after a while you reach the place where you get into a boat. The boat crosses a big lake and we disembarked at the other side.
Unfortunately, the light rain had become a heavy one and we decided to return. However the visitor must have at least 4-5 hours to enjoy the rare scenery. By the time we had arrived at the entrance we were already soaked and the rain was still falling. One of the shops there offered fried chicken and beer. We could not resist and enjoyed the food under a tent talking and laughing and that was one the best moments of the trip. After we bought some souvenirs from the Park as well as some local cheese, we returned to the bikes and to the houses.
Next thing we packed our things and we said goodbye to the family and started for our last destination in Croatia, the city of Zadar. The weather was sunny now and the colors of the landscape amazing. Especially the first part of the route, near the Plitvice area, was fantastic. However, we were still not warm and we were happy to meet a long tunnel (about 5 km) during which we dried! We arrived at Zadar while it was getting dark and we looked for a place to spend the night. Those suggested in the book guide had no vacancies and the time was passing with us being more hungry and tired. At last we found an apartment where, although a bit small and expensive, we decided to stay since it was only for one night. We hanged our wet clothes and had a hot shower. The team was exhausted and outside it was raining; however we decided to go for a walk as we would not have another chance to visit Zadar.
The historic center is quite picturesque with well preserved buildings. Most important are the church of St. Donatus built in the 9th century, and St Mary’s Church built in 1105, where the permanent exhibition “The gold and Silver of Zadar” is housed. When we arrived at the center it was already empty because of the rain and the time. Fortunately, we found a pizzeria still open to satisfy our hunger. After wandering around the streets of Zadar we ended in a nice bar for a last drink in Croatia. When we returned back to our rooms we fell asleep immediately because we had to wake up early.