Plitvace Lake 1 day or 2?

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May 28th, 2017, 05:50 PM
  #1
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Plitvace Lake 1 day or 2?

Hi,

We will be driving from Rovijn to Plitvace. Should we take our time to site see along the way, and go to Plitvace Lakes the following day, then continue on to Split that late afternoon....or get to Plitvace as quickly as possible, do a 1/2 day in the afternoon, and another 1/2 day the following morning, and then leave for Split after lunch? We can only stay at the lakes one night, so there's no option with that. The other question that comes to mind is, would we rather sight see on the way to Split rather than from Rovinj to the lakes?

Thanks for the help!
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May 28th, 2017, 05:59 PM
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If you are starting in Rovinj, what else will you have seen before leaving? Will you see any of the hill towns in Istria? You could stop and see a town or two on the way to Plitvice, I guess.

I would plan to get into the park first thing in the morning when it opens (7AM in season) and try to hike a bit before the big crowds of tour groups arrive. It's a popular park and gets very busy in the summer. (You don't say what time of year you will visit.) I don't think you need two nights at Plitvice, personally - you can get the gist of the park in a good 6-7 hours or so.

But if I had to choose where to stop and sight see along the way, I would probably stop north of Split in places like Zadar, Sibenik, and possibly Krka National Park, but they can all be time consuming. Sibenik is a nice town just off the main highway so may take the least amount of time to stop and see.
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May 28th, 2017, 06:04 PM
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Hi Andrew. We'll be in Croatia the first week of September. We have a few days in Rovinj so we will see some of the hill towns I'm sure. I just wondered if we would be rushing to get to Split by dinner time if we did the lakes in one day. We do plan to start when the park opens.
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May 28th, 2017, 06:25 PM
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If you have seen the hill towns ahead of time, the other obvious stop in between Rovinj and Plitvice is the Kvarner Gulf area: Rijeka, Opatija, etc. Opatija is probably the most well-regarded tourist town, though there are other little towns. However, a highlight attraction of the area is the Lungomare, a long seaside promenade several kilometers long between Rijeka past Opatija and Lovran. The watk passes numerous old Austrian villas, but it's also got numerous seaside/beach recreational areas.

I liked just doing the walk along the sea there. But if that doesn't appeal to you, you could explore one or more of those seaside towns.

Otherwise, you might skip them and get to Plitvice by mid-afternoon, see part of the park the first day (maybe all of it), spend the night, and see the rest the next morning and leave before say noon, so you'd have time for a stop or two on the way to Split.

September is probably not a bad time to be at Plitvice: not empty but not as crowded as in the summer. I was there in early October the first time on a Sunday-Monday, and Sunday was surprisingly busy even in October. I can't imagine the park in the summer - must be overrun and unpleasant.
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May 29th, 2017, 01:58 PM
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Thanks!
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May 29th, 2017, 02:11 PM
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The walk you describe sounds great! But if we chose to do the lakes in 2 1/2 days, how would that work? Upper lakes in one day and lower in the other? Can't quite picture it in my mind.
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May 29th, 2017, 02:24 PM
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Unless you are avid hikers who want to see every nuance and alternate trail and view at Plitvice, you don't need a whole day for the upper lakes and a whole day for the lower. You can easily do both in one day or a long half day (or parts of two days) and get the gist. I think 6-7 hours is a decent amount of time for average people to hike both lower and upper lakes, unless they are really taking their time. You don't have to hike every inch of every trail to see the best of Plitvice.

One benefit of having a little extra time at Plitvice is that you might have a bad weather day and having maybe one sunny day to hike might be nice if the other is say rainy - always a possibility even in September.

Keep in mind that it's a highly developed park - it's not a virgin wilderness or anything. Although you hike in the park, it almost seems like more of a walk at times. It's the kind of place where I felt, after a while, that I had covered enough of the highlights and didn't really need to see every possible view or every little waterfall, after I had seen the best falls. It's really lovely but it also can get kind of repetitive.
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Jun 1st, 2017, 02:08 PM
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See my newly posted Trip Report. We found one day gave us plenty of time to see the "big" falls around Entrance 1 and the falls from top to bottom at Entrance 2.
As I pointed out, we drove from Rovinj to Plitvice (Miric Inn) and the Google GPS that takes you via Route 42 is absolutely to be avoided!! Continue on A6 to Karlovac and then Route 1 south to your hotel.
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Jun 3rd, 2017, 05:28 PM
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Good trip report. Thanks for all the info!
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