Croatia: Natural gems and undiscovered trails is written by The editorial staff.
Croatia was not a country, which stood at the top of my bucket list, before one day I saw my neighbor's holiday photos from a super beautiful hike in something resembling 'Southern Europe Norway'. Winding paths, beautiful gorges and mountains on the horizon amazed me, and off we went. We went to the Dalmatia region an hour's drive north of Split. An equally adventurous place as the name suggests.
Some of it fat by Croatia is that the national parks are strewn with a generous hand, and nature is conveyed gently and respectfully. Here is nothing with giant signs and popped offers that overshadow the experience. Nature is allowed to be nature.
In 2020, there is even culture on the program, as the city Rijeka is the European City of Culture of the Year.
Croatia after the Civil War
The tourists have certainly found Croatia and Balkans after the Civil War in the 1990s, and in several places along coastal paths, power plants - and infrastructure in general - are struggling to keep up. We managed to find both deserted nature and holiday apartments without tourists. I have never really traveled in a country where tourists were so rarely lumped together.
Waterfront apartment - without tourists
The first challenge was where we were going to live. We wanted to avoid large holiday hotels and instead find something more authentic. We had 27 people off to celebrate a golden wedding in the family. Therefore, we wanted to find something big, but at the same time private and really like with a kitchen for each part of the family.
We found it in the luxury apartments Pinna Nobilis in the small sleepy town of Brodarica. In the property there are a total of four apartments and we rented all four of them. Virtually no tourists, but in return lots of locals. Just as we like it best. Opposite is one of Croatia's many micro islands Krapanj that you can sail or swim to. The island can be trotted around in an hour.
Croatia's national parks on the strip
Within a short distance there are three large national parks: Krka, Plitvice and Kornati. One of the biggest experiences was Krka with the waterfall Skradinsky Buk. This is a tourist attraction that deserves to be just that. "Isn't it just a waterfall?", You might be thinking. But the whole experience is composed to feed the expectations and make it tickle in the stomach. The giant waterfall simply sneaks up on you.
The trip starts a good distance from the waterfall, and at first the water trickles quite quietly. For every meter you walk, there is more movement in the water under the boardwalk. Paths meander in and out, and the trees stand stubbornly in the stream. Finally you hear the distant rumble of the waterfall. Skradinsky Buk roars like an angry lion. The contrast to the quiet start is enormous.
Panoramic views of Šibenik
On the coast next to the Krka National Park by the charming old town of Šibenik you will find a hiking trail, which in every way is an overlooked gem. It is clear that both money and care have been posted in building the hiking trail in the hills along the coast. Both times we have been there, there has not been an eye on the 9 kilometer long route. There you have excellent views and interesting cultural experiences all to yourself.
The path is called Kanal Sv. Ante-Setnica and is paved with stone the first part of the road and then gravel path. It winds its way up and down past one panoramic view after another. Even beyond the town of Šibenik and the Kornati National Park, made up of a handful of tiny rugged islands so lovingly nestled in the Adriatic Sea.
On the path you come past a church room in a cliff - St. Anthony Church English. With its six meters to the ceiling, it looks like a small natural cathedral. It has been used as a church from the Middle Ages until 1930, when the military took over the cave and placed cannons here in defense of Šibenik.
Historic footprints and trails
The history of the city of Šibenik is probably one of the most tumultuous in all of Dalmatia. The Venetians, Turks and Austrians are just some of the external threats the city has faced.
Even World War II has left its footprints here. Along the way you come to Hitler's Eye - the tunnel that Hitler began to build during World War II and which the Yugoslavs completed in the late 1940s. The turning point of the path is at St. Nicholas Fort, which has historically been central to guarding against invading forces from the sea.
Today, Šibenik is peaceful and unconquered. The old town and the cathedral are definitely worth a visit at the end of the hike. And if hunger strikes, there is also the award-winning Michelin-starred restaurant Pelegrini.
Bon appetit in Croatia!
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