Last week my other half and I jetted off on our holidays to Zadar in Croatia. It’s the third time I’ve been to Croatia and it never gets old. Across my various trips I’ve done most of the country, or at least the coast anyway. My last visit was a road trip with my sister, along the northern coast and inland trips to Krka and Plitvics National Parks. This time around, I wanted to take my other half to the National Parks as they are so stunning.
We were based in an Air BNB in Zadar, one of the country’s oldest coastal towns. It’s famous for it’s Roman and Venetian Old Town, which like all of the Croatian Old Towns is beautiful!
Our apartment itself was about a 45min walk to the Old Town through the suburbs and around the harbour. I would say for most meals we walked into the Old Town as that was where a lot was going on and it was just a lovely place to be.
There are plenty of roman remains, museums and pretty ancient streets to explore. We walked up the Bell Tower which I would definitely recommend for some gorgeous views of the city and surrounding coast.
Our absolute favourite restaurant was Bruschetta, just off the harbour strip. The service was amazing, great atmosphere and delicious food. We went a few days into our trip and then ended up going back on our final night as we loved it so much. I can highly recommend the truffle spaghetti!
After a day of exploring Zadar, we road tripped out to Krka National Park. From Zadar it’s about 1.5hrs away. It is breathtakingly beautiful and even now, after two visits, I would say there must still be a lot of it I haven’t seen. By far my favourite part is following the wooden walkway through the waterfalls and woodland. You’ll finally reach a clearing and the biggest waterfall in the park. The water everywhere is so turquoise, you can see shoals of fish and hear endless amounts of wildlife.
This is the most popular area and you can get a boat out to quieter parts. We spent half a day there, then drove back towards the coast via Sibenik.
Another small city with a gorgeous Old Town, Sibenik is really lovely to spend an hour walking around. You can easily get lost amongst the narrow old alleys, and there are some really lovely shops.
The next day, we drove out to Plitvics National Park, which was about 2/2.5 hours from Zadar. The drive itself is beautiful. You go up into the mountains and then down the other side into farmland and valleys. I had amazing memories of Plitvics from my first trip and was so excited about going back. It had stuck in my mind as one of the most incredibly stunning places in the world, and it still is.
As soon as you walk in you see the huge waterfalls, and then there are several different hiking routes you can take around the park. Either along the top of the lakes, along wooden walkways that snake through them, or you can get a bus/boat. We walked along the top of the valley, looking down at the lakes then got the boat towards the Upper Lakes. There are some amazing smaller waterfalls here to explore. However, this time around the park was just so busy. It was really difficult to enjoy the scenery when we were pretty much in a queue walking round the paths.
For quieter routes you should take the hiking paths around the edges of the lake. Sadly this time they were water logged and closed which was a shame. By the time we walked down to the big waterfalls it was full of tour groups and you could barely get along the walkaways. It was frustrating but Plitvics is still an absolute must do because of it’s natural beauty.
For the last few days of the holiday we relaxed around the pool, had long lunches at a restaurant nearby and walked into Zadar Old Town in the evening for dinner. I started reading ‘Sapiens’ by Yuval Noah Harari, which is so interesting! I’m only half way at this point but will definitely share my thoughts in my next ‘What I loved‘ post.
One night we timed our walk to Zadar perfectly for sunset. We had a cocktail along the sea front while we watched the sun start to come. We finished our drinks just in time to walk up to the Sea Organ, an art installation which plays music from the force of the sea waves. Zadar is said to be one of the best places to watch a sunset and I can see why. You have unspoiled views of the sun out of sea.
All in all it was a really fantastic trip! I’m now feeling totally ready for a busy few months of weddings, starting on Saturday with Hannah & Ollie!