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Zadar cruise pier - Gazenica or downtown

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I have been reading that there is a new cruise pier in Zadar 3.5 kilometers from downtown. We will be on Rhapsody of Seas in August 2016 and was wondering if the ship will be docking at Gazenica (the new pier) or downtown at the old pier. And has anyone rented a car and visited either Kkrk also would we be able to rent a car and visit one of the parks Krka National Park or Plitvice Lakes in one day. We are in Zadar from 7 to 6 pm (so reasonably by the time we rent a car and get on the road it would be 9 am)

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    Krka is a lot closer to Zadar than Plitvice is (I was not on a cruise, but I stayed a night in Zadar and drove to Krka the next day). I think you should expect minimum two hours by car each way from Zadar to Plitvice. You can get the gist of Plitvice in 4-5 hours, but you wouldn't have a lot of margin for delays, traffic jams, etc. I have never been to Croatia in high season, but I hear you should expect a lot of traffic. I tend to be a nervous traveler and I'd probably worry about being late back to the ship, but I'm sure people do the day trip to Plitvice and get away with it.

    Also, you should expect that in August mid-day, Plitvice will be an absolute zoo: probably mobs of people. It might not make for a pleasant experience, having to wait in lines and maneuver around crowds. It's a popular, highly structured park, with wooden boardwalks and shuttle buses, not a wild park, and it attracts many tourists. Krka will probably be crowded too, though. Personally, I liked Plitvice better than Krka, which has as its highlight a magnificent cascading waterfall called Skradinski Buk whereas Plitvice has dozens of little waterfalls. You could also swim at Skradinski Buk if you want to (no swimming allowed at Plitvice).

    If you rent a car and go to Krka, you could also stop at the town of Sibenik, a great authentic-feeling town that doesn't feel as tourist-oriented as Zadar. If you like towns, you could put it on your agenda if you have time. There's more to Krka than just Skradinki Buk - some Roman ruins, another waterfall, etc. - but you either have to drive to everything or take a long boat excursion.

    Check with Royal Caribbean about which pier they will use in Zadar in August. Someone on Cruise Critic probably knows.

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