Return to the magical water world of the Plitvice Lakes National Park in Croatia
If all goes well, we will once again be able to photograph the incredible water world of the Plitvice Lakes National Park during the first week of October on our 9-day Slovenia & Croatia Photo Tour and we can’t wait.
Check out some of our favorite images and read all about what happened to a group of otherwise well-behaved photographers when presented with enough Croatian plum brandy and a guitar player. ;-)
The magical Plitvice Lakes National Park is a 111-sq.-mile heavily forested reserve in central Croatia. It’s known for a chain of 16 crystalline terraced lakes and cascading waterfalls that extend into a limestone canyon. The lake system is the result of millennia of ongoing geological and biochemical processes creating natural dams known as tufa barriers. These are formed by the deposition of calcium carbonate from the waters flowing through the property. In the case of the Plitvice lake system, this geochemical process of tufa formation interacts with living organisms, most importantly mosses, algae, and aquatic bacteria.
Imagine yourself surrounded by this water world, photographing the crystal clear waterfalls and rustic boardwalks that float above a myriad of meandering streams and brooks in a misty dense forest. Slowing your camera’s shutter speed down to half a second or so gives the water in your images a beautiful silky look. There is something so appealing about this effect — very addicting.
As it is a bit of a drive to Plitvice, we spend 3 nights here to do it justice. After spending two nights in the charming medieval town of Rovinj, we make the 4-hour drive inland to this magical area. We stay in a comfortable family-run inn, set in the forest just a 5-minute drive from the park entrance.
We close the park down each evening and return to our welcoming inn for a Croatian feast prepared by the owners and their extended family. Aunts, uncles, and cousins who live in the community help to prepare the evening meal that features grilled meats and fresh trout, heaps of roasted veggies, and huge glasses (think bathtub) of exquisite Croatian red wine. And if you are so inclined, don’t forget to sample the local hooch that appears on the table in front of you — a plum brandy called Slivovitz.
One year our hosts also provided dinner entertainment in form of a guitar player who regaled us with American folk songs. By the time many of us had sampled enough of the gratis Slivovitz offering, we all turned into an impromptu choir and sang a rousing rendition of Burning Ring of Fire. And we even did it again the next evening. But not to worry, neither imbibing Slivovitz nor singing at the top of your lungs are a prerequisite for joining our tours.
Watch Magrit (the Bag Lady) walking on the wooden boardwalk during a rainy day in Plitvice. The black garbage bag is a nice touch, don’t you think? Even in the rain, we were able to create good images. In fact, the wooden boardwalks are more photogenic and richer in color when they’re wet.
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