Weekend Trip – Plitvicka Jezera


9.5 Out of the World

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Plitvicka Jezera [plit’vchka eezira] now tops the chart of my “must visit before you die” list (I don’t have one yet? Ok, if I ever make such list:p). It is the prettiest place I ever seen in my life. The earthly aroma, otherworldly landscape, sapphire clear lakes and emerald green hills – it was an unscrupulous sensory feast. Slowly striding on the wooden passages built around the park, the flowing water underneath rhymes soul and heart with the best nature has to offer.

When the plane touched down at Zagreb, overjoyed fellow passengers merrily clapped and yeahed, probably celebrating the fact we were not shot down by a rocket launcher? Ironically, I felt disconcerting for the same reason – since when we need to worry about rocket launchers? It was easy to hop on a bus to travel to the city center – which was little more than a station in Zone 6 London. Have you ever experienced running in circles around a GPS point but could never find it? That is me, midnight in the deserted streets. I recollected dozen of too familiar scenes in movies of how things could go wrong, before I firmly rang some random doorbell. The lady who answered the bell was extremely kind considering the hour. With her broken English, we found the bed we supposed to sleep.

Ticket to the national park can be bought at the main bus station. It was a 2 hour meandering journey in the valley before we reached the national park entrance one. Walk about 50 meters along the gate, there is a grocery which sold water for 1/3 the price in the restaurant. You may need the water to queue for the ticket.

Now, get ready for a new world!

Wooden planks paved passages connected the whole park which can easily take more than 6 hours to make a full circle. Plan your time well if you need to catch the returning bus.

Our Route (<5 hours)

1. Enter by entrance 1

2. Walked alone the east side of the path

3. Ferry across the biggest lake Kozjak (WARNING: UK-Border length queue, train your dog to queue if you have one)

4. Once you get down the ferry, walk west until reach the west most point

5. Ride tour train back from the top of the hill

6. Walk to the entrance 1

We followed the stone paved route to descend, along the way, there are a number of small and big waterfalls and viewpoints. The bottoms of the valley are dotted with large blue lagoons. Schools of neo-blue-tail fishes curiously lined up along the path (and some chocolate colored water snakes too – be cautious if you want to dip any of your body part in the water!) And one important tip: if you have made first half of your trip along the lake, make sure your return journey is high up. There are a number of stunning viewpoints which you don’t want to miss. Words were so pale to describe the sublime. I will just let my camera do the talking:

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Visual satisfaction was just a small portion of the immersing experience. Plan your next holiday, you will not be disappointed!

We spent the next day in Zagreb which in comparison was less exciting. But we still had some interesting experiences. Started the day with a man dived deep in a green garbage bin just outside where we stayed. When he noticed that I was looking at him, he offered to bring me tea. We ordered beef soup at a highly recommended restaurant and subsequently had the first beef soup in our life without any traces of beef. Don’t know if it was just us who got used to populous metropolitans. One moment on the main street, we suddenly realized we were the only soul around – people in Zagreb don’t need to go to Disney for Spooky House.

The only landmark worth visiting was the St Mark Church. It fashioned a rather modern rooftop design. What does it remind you?

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I think I can do the same with my Minecraft!

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