Plitvice Lake (technically lakes) is a a region of magnificent lakes, canyons, waterfalls and forests that is considered to be among the most beautiful places in Europe. The lakes are routinely numbered among the most breathtaking in the world, and draw huge numbers of visitors every year. The entire area is encompassed in Plitvice Lake National Park which is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The area around the Plitvice Lakes have been inhabited by humans for tens of thousands of years, and since the dawn of recorded history has been fought over and occupied dozens of nations and empires. The lakes have been enjoyed for recreation at least as far back as Roman times, but it wasn’t until major roads were added in the 1960s that tourism really took off. The area was bitterly fought over in the 1990s, though much of the damage has since been repaired.
The Plitvice system consists of sixteen lakes on the surface and others underground that are all interconnected. They are fed by by mountain streams, many of which fall spectacularly into the lakes by waterfalls. The Lower Lakes Canyon is particularly spectacular, with a series of lakes lined up in steppes along the canyon walls. Most of the lakes are separated by naturally formed dams , many of which are perfect for hiking.
Plitvice Lakes National Park is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Croatia, with over a million visitors every year. The area around the park is rich in wildlife, with brown bears in addition to wolves and lynxes. Web: www.np-plitvicka-jezera.hr (official website).