Monday, September 2, 2013
Off to an early start with breakfast at 8:00 a.m. It's much
cooler today and overcast, with a chance of rain. It will be fine
hiking weather as long as the rain holds off. Bojana put out a good
breakfast spread, boiled eggs, cold cuts, cheese, bread, various
sweet rolls, cereal, yogurt, jam, coffee, juice, fruit, and more.
That ought to give us the energy to hike.
Plitvice Lakes to Omis
Nacionalni Park Plitvicka Jezera (Plitvice Lakes
National Park) is a lush land of enchantment encompassing 16
terraced lakes and dozens of waterfalls linked together by dirt
paths and boardwalks. It's the largest and oldest of Croatia's
eight national parks.
We parked at Entrance 2, bought our tickets, and walked 15 minutes
to tram stop 2, where we boarded a tram (they call it a train) that
took us on a 15-minute ride to the top of the Upper Lakes at tram
stop 3. The trams and boats are included in the 110 kuna entrance
This photo came
As recommended by Bojana, we followed the “H” trail through the
park. 12 of the 16 lakes are in the Upper Lakes portion of the
park. They are all crystal clear, gorgeous, and connected together
by waterfalls and cascades. I was happy for the sketchy weather
because it kept the crowds away. It wasn't too busy around the
Upper Lakes, except for the foot-traffic-jams that occurred on the
boardwalks when people posed too long for photos.
Plitvice Lakes National
And me with no fishing
A ferry ride across Lake Kozjak links the Upper and Lower Lakes.
There's restrooms and a restaurant above the Lower Lakes ferry
dock. We got ice cream here after the quiet 20-minute ride on the
Ferry across Lake
The boardwalks at the Lower Lakes were crowded with herd-like tour
groups. The groups don't go to the less accessible Upper Lakes. We
hiked over to the big waterfall of Veliki Slap, along with everyone
else in the world, then the trail rose steeply up the side of a
canyon, giving us great views of the park below.
Fabulous flora, Lower
We caught the tram at stop 1 and rode back to Entrance 2. It stayed
cold all day in the park, never rising out of the 40s. It misted a
little in the morning but never turned to rain. Happily, this is
the only day of our trip that we even needed jackets.
I feel like we got a pretty complete tour of this spectacular park.
The Upper Lakes are more beautiful and less busy than the Lower,
but with the big waterfall and the panoramic view at the Lower
Lakes, I'm glad we did both. Overall, I rate this one of my top-ten
favorite national parks in the world!
By 3:00 we were on the road to Omis. A few kilometers north of
Udbina, there was a long fence with razor wire at the top and some
tanks parked behind it, posted with “no photo” and “no stopping”
signs. Tom wanted to stop regardless, but I urged him on. Once we
got to the A1 toll road, I gave Tom a break for an hour or so and
did some of the driving. Yay for me.
At 6:00 we arrived at Apartments Vulic in Omis. Omis is a little
town situated on the Adriatic Coast at the mouth of the Cetina
Gorge, just far enough from the city of Split to be out of the
Once again, the name of our soba wasn't posted out front, but we'd
looked at a picture of it on the Internet this morning, so we were
able to recognize it. We were greeted by Ivanka, who speaks
Croatian and German, and we had some difficulty communicating. At
one point I thought she was speaking Italian (after all, she
greeted us with “ciao”), so I tried a little Spanish, but it turns
out that although the dialect of Croatian in this region sounds
somewhat like Italian, the similarity ends there, so the Spanish
wasn't helpful at all. So much for that!
Anyway, Ivanka showed us our room and then served us coffee and
orange juice in the courtyard. Then I offered her our passports and
managed to successfully pay, and all worked out fine. We did learn
from her that her son Josip would be there later, and that he
speaks good English.
Our room has a nice balcony with a view of the Dalmatian Mountains
and a small kitchenette. I was happy to have a kitchen. We've been
gone less than a week, and we're already sick of eating out. This
place also has one of those separate switches for the water heater.
We're not going to be tricked by that again! There's a covered
parking area for the SEAT under a huge canopy of mature grapevines.
Very cool. We're staying here two nights.
At dusk we walked across the street to the beach and watched the
sky fade into night. Then we visited the supermarket, and for
dinner we made beef with marinara sauce, kidney beans, and bread
and butter. We also got some tonic water to try to tone down the
sweetness of the liqueurs we bought by the side of the road
yesterday. I liked the walnut liqueur the best. They make it from
the entire black walnut, fermenting the nuts when the green outer
coating of the nut is still soft.
Nightfall at the
Sign our guestbook