Europe 2.0 – Day 20 16 June 

Omg… Less than one month to school reopening. Dammit I feel really reluctant to think about med and I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to dive back in. :/ imo I should be a travel blogger instead 😉 

This morning we caught a bus to Plitvice National Park, probably the most famous attraction in the whole of Croatia? (Dubrovnik is only well known because of GoT… I think.) Whenever we tell people that we’re moving to plitvice after visiting Split and Zadar, everyone has high compliments for this place so I looking forward to see it with my own eyes! 

And it sure didn’t disappoint! We booked accoms in a nearby village called Jezerce and walked for about 20 minutes from Munkinje bus station after alighting the bus. The village is extremely scenic because of the cute little wooden+rock houses with beautiful balconies and potted flowers. It’s the ideal countryside kinda village, like Tuscany! 

We couldn’t check in yet but that didn’t stop us from heading off immediately. From entrance 2, we took the tourist bus from station 2 to station 3, where we planned to trek down and then visit the lower lakes. 

My first and strongest impression of the whole park is how clean and transparent the waters are. THE WHOLE PARK IS LIKE WALKING THROUGH A FISH TANK!!! When you look at the water at either side, you can see the fishes going about their lives (i.e swimming), what’s on the base of the lakes and the roots of trees stretching hear there and everywhere. It is super duper cool! Look farther and the water changes hue from white/transparent to an azure blue. It’s really stunning and my jaw was literally dropping at every turn because the water is just so crystal clear EVERYWHERE. 

There was a road block in the upper lakes, where we started, and we found ourselves back at our starting point after 30 minutes… This was worrying because we were running on limited time since we only bought one day passes and planned to visit the entire park. But no matter, a ranger at the information booth gave us an alternative route and soon we found ourselves at P2, where we took a ferry to P3. 

In our journey there were SO MANY OTHER PEOPLE! And I was kinda frustrated by this because it stresses me out whenever someone behind me is stuck due to my slowness, or I’m stuck behind someone slower. Or simply inconvenience arising from squeezing in narrow trails. But the whole park was very clean, especially the water 😉 

We had quick lunch after arriving at P3, which is the ferry stop to visit the lower lakes. The lower lakes had more scenic stops and we were excited that we had considerable time left to walk at a leisurely pace. Yue shan had hamburger and sausage roll for me. Tbh many visitors felt that the food was overpriced but I felt that many affordable options were available at prices not much higher than fast food chains in town. Besides, the food was hot and came in generous portions to give us sufficient energy for the rest of the day. 

At around 415pm, we began the second part of our visiting. Unfortunately the sky became dark before we could reach the main attraction, Veliki Slap/big waterfall. A lesser known route nearby will take us to a panoramic view of the lower lakes and I was super excited to howghere because it looked AWESOME on photos. 

Unfortunately on our trek up to the panoramic spot, IT STARTED DRIZZLING. And before we even arrived, the light rain became torrential and gusts of wind made us feel super cold. We quickly took shelter at a nearby house. 

It was 520pm and the park would close at 7pm. We needed to hurry but we couldn’t predict if the rain would grow bigger or subside. At around 535pm, the rain became the smallest ever since it started and we abandoned our plans to wait until 545pm. Quickly we left the shelter and continued on the path that’d take us to the panoramic spot. Luckily, a portion of it was forrested area so we had some cover from the rain. But of course we were drenched before we even reached our destination. 

Finally we arrived 5mins later. Unfortunately, something that I was really stoked to see stood against grey clouds and there was nobody on the trails when we looked down. Perhaps everyone has quickly fled due to the rain. 😦

We took a few photos of our drenched selves with the scenery and left in a hurry so that we had adequate time to retrace our steps, which would now be slippery and dangerous. Upon emerging from the forest, YS spotted a couple inside a car and asked if we could get a lift. Lucky for us, they could drop us at a convenient location to take the ferry back even though they were headed for an opposite direction. And in another 30 minutes we were back at entrance 2, where we entered the park. 

The way back home would be tough as it is Ling and the weather was cold. YS thought I was purposely walking slowly and I thought she was insulting my snail pace (which I sweared was my maximum as it was very chilly). After being angry for roughly 10mins, we decided to snap out of it and tried again, for the 6th time, to hitchhike. 

I didn’t think anyone would stop for us because cars were zooming down the main road. But we manage to get a car on our second try, lucky us! They very kindly dropped us off at the doorstep of our accoms. 🙂 Hooray! 

It was about 7pm; we quickly washed up and went down for dinner at our accoms. We shared a trout and mixed meat with special bread, which tasted SO GOOD!!!!!! It was a very, very hearty meal and I’m so glad that Croats serve big portions of food everywhere! 

Epic day, imo HAHAHA! Lastly I’d say Plitvice lakes have been magical… (like going to Disneyland) Many people laud it for its many waterfalls but I feel that seeing fishes swim in clear waters around me, like as if I was diving, would be most memorable for me. 🙂