Looking for a rejuvenating escape amidst nature near the city of Zadar? These are the must-visit locations and activities you simply can't miss

Looking for a rejuvenating escape amidst nature near the city of Zadar? These are the must-visit locations and activities you simply can't miss

Immersing yourself in the beauty of the countryside offers a perfect escape from the city's hustle and bustle. Here, amidst nature's embrace and a wealth of cultural heritage, you'll find a plethora of activities for a truly enriching and indulgent experience. A holiday in the countryside near the city of Zadar offers precisely what you need. Indulge in the allure of crystal-clear beaches, immerse yourself in a rich tapestry of culture, and explore captivating historical monuments and attractions. Embark on thrilling adrenaline activities and revel in the awe-inspiring beauty of nature.

Some enchanting nature destinations near Zadar, offering perfect break amidst the natural splendour

Although Zadar has a lot of interesting things to offer, don't just stop there.

Explore enchanting nature destinations near Zadar that we recommend visiting. Make sure to visit the breath-taking waterfalls of Krka National Park and explore the rich flora and fauna of Vransko jezero Nature Park. Embark on a trip to Paklenica National Park to witness impressive canyons and uncover the underground wonders of the Cerovac Caves. For an adrenaline rush, we highly recommend rafting on the Zrmanja River.

Krka National Park - a paradise for all waterfall enthusiasts

Krka National Park, named after the river of the same name, stands as one of Croatia's most captivating natural attractions. It is located near the town of Skradin, approximately 80 kilometres northeast of the city of Split.

Krka National Park spans over 109 square kilometres, encompassing the mesmerizing river Krka and the lower stream of the river Čikola. In its course, the Krka River showcases a temperament that ranges from a calm, restrained flow to a swift and impressive phenomenon as it winds through the canyons.

Krka National Park is renowned for its magnificent waterfalls, including the awe-inspiring Bilušića buk, Brljan, Manojlovac, Rošnjak, Miljacka slap, Skradinski buk, and Roški slap. Seven of these waterfalls amaze with a total drop of 224 meters, with the most famous ones being Skradinski buk and Roški slap. Situated near the village of Skradin, Skradinski buk stands as one of Europe's most abundant watercourses, captivating and attracting an increasing number of visitors each year. Roški slap impresses with both its remarkable height and width.

In addition to its stunning waterfalls, Krka National Park stands out for its diverse and rich flora and fauna. Here, you'll find nearly 1200 plant species and subspecies, along with a variety of animals, all contributing to the harmonious scenes of untouched nature.

Bathing in permitted parts of the National Park creates cherished memories and stirs a strong desire to return to this enchanting and magical place. More information regarding bathing and boat excursions can be found on the official website of the National Park. We also offer boat trips to Čikola, Roški slap, fortresses of Trošenj and Nečven, and the captivating Island of Visovac.

Vrana Lake Nature Park - a place abundant in natural beauty, boasting diverse flora and fauna

Nestled between Šibenik and Zadar in the region of northern Dalmatia lies a hidden gem known as Vrana Lake Nature Park. Birds in flight and fish in the water, even rare species recognize the uniqueness of this special habitat.

Vrana Lake was shaped within a depression between two reefs, and thanks to its connection to the sea through the underground channel "Prosika," it allows for the flow of both fresh and sea water. With its typical Mediterranean climate, pine trees, natural spring of drinking water, marshy waters, and high biodiversity, Vrana Lake Nature Park offers a truly remarkable and diverse ecosystem. Stretching over an impressive 30 square kilometres, Vrana Lake is the largest natural freshwater lake in Croatia, boasting a rich diversity of flora and fauna due to its unique features. In recognition of its unique features, Lake Vrana, along with the surrounding area, was designated as a Nature Park in 1999.

Vrana Lake Nature Park is widely recognized in Europe as an essential habitat for migratory birds and endemic fish species. The harmonious fusion of water and land creates an exceptional habitat for diverse animals, enriching the experience of this unique place. Over 256 bird species have been recorded in the area, with an additional 102 species actively breeding in this remarkable location. Apart from being a paradise for passionate birdwatchers, Lake Vrana also provides an exceptional fishing experience for anglers. Fishing is permitted in specific areas, which is a rarity among Croatian nature parks.

Scenes of raw nature encompassing grass, sedge, and reeds, adorned with the vibrant colours of perennial flowers, together with a plethora of butterflies and other animals, delight all visitors. The captivating combination of colours and aromatic scents of plants adds the perfect finishing touch to this enriching experience. To fully explore this area, engage all your senses.

A bicycle path approximately 40 km long encircles the lake. Whether you prefer walking, cycling, or simply observing at a leisurely pace, choose the activity that suits you best. If you crave more dynamics or wish to test your dexterity, visit the nearby adrenaline park. In addition to zip lines, this park offers a range of other thrilling activities for adventurous souls.

Paklenica National Park - a renowned gem among Croatia's natural wonders

Recognized as a unique area as early as 1949, Paklenica National Park is the most preserved and largest forest complex in Dalmatia. It earned this distinction when the area of Velika and Mala Paklenica was declared a national park. Spectacular canyons, hiking trails, and climbing rocks of Paklenica National Park are frequently at the top of the wish list for hiking and adventure enthusiasts. Indeed, it's hardly surprising. This area serves as a unique natural playground, complemented by breath-taking geomorphological formations and magnificent forests that add to the overall experience.

Encompassing an area of 95 square kilometres on the slopes of southern Velebit, Paklenica National Park is home to the highest peaks, with Vaganski vrh standing at 1757 meters, and Sveto brdo at 1753 meters above sea level. At the southern slopes of Velebit lie the area of torrential flows of Velika and Mala Paklenica, featuring their canyons intricately carved into the slopes of Velebit and the surrounding area.

The Velika Paklenica canyon stretches for 14 km, with a width ranging from 500 to 800 meters. At its most slender point, the canyon narrows down to a mere 50 meters wide. This part of the canyon is particularly attractive, with the stream cascading downstream from the Anić port, creating a steep and captivating waterfall. Vertical rocks tower on both sides of the canyon, with some of them soaring to heights exceeding 700 meters.

The Croatian word "mala" in "Mala Paklenica" translates to "small" in English, suggesting that Mala Paklenica is of modest size, but still no less impressive. The canyon spans 12 km in length and varies in width from 400 to 500 meters. At its narrowest point, it is a mere 10 meters wide, with the surrounding rocks soaring to heights of up to 650 meters.

The space between the two canyons is inaccessible, mainly due to the karst rocks and cliffs. Stone, karst, and the unique flora. The list includes an impressive 1000 plant species and subspecies, with 79 of them being endemic to the region. The diversity of plants is complemented by the wide array of animal species that inhabit this area. Visitors can observe a variety of wild birds, including griffon vultures and grey hawks, while wolves, bears, wild boars, and other animals can also be spotted along the way.

All those eager for adventure will find their appetites thoroughly satisfied in this extraordinary place. Paklenica National Park offers a range of hiking trails of varying difficulties and lengths, ensuring that everyone can find a suitable route to explore. Whether you prefer a more demanding hike or a leisurely stroll, both accompanied by the soothing sounds of nature and the presence of animals, you'll undoubtedly be rewarded with beautiful vistas at every step.

Zrmanja Canyon - a pristine wonder of untouched nature and one of the most beautiful rivers in Croatia.

The crystal-clear Zrmanja River stretches 69 km in length and lies at the heart of Dalmatia. The river originates at the foot of the Poštak Mountain in the municipality of Gračac and flows into the Novigrad Sea. The Zrmanja Canyon extends from Obrovac to the river mouth and is a protected geo-morphological monument of nature.

Apart from its crystal-clear water, the river's allure is further accentuated by enchanting waterfalls and majestic canyons, creating a captivating combination that draws the attention and entices numerous visitors. While those seeking a serene experience can enjoy the breathtaking sights, while adventurers will surely be left in awe of the thrilling side of the Zrmanja River.

Above the river, towering cliffs rising to a height of over 200m provide a vantage point to witness the might of the wild river and the surrounding mountains. Such a lookout is not to be missed. Beautiful views from various observation points serve as ideal backdrops for capturing breath-taking photos.

The map indicates that the best route to reach the canyon is by road from Jasenica, heading towards Obrovac. After passing through Jasenice, take a right turn onto a gravel road that will lead you to a moderately sized plateau right along the edge of the Zrmanja River canyon. This is the location where the films about Chief Winnetou were made, bringing special delight to all the fans of this classic character. If you decide to take an organized boat excursion, departing from Maslenica, you can also see the filming locations along the river.

Don't forget the name Pariževačka glavica and make sure not to miss the spectacular view from this vantage point.

Cerovac Caves - the largest cave complex in Croatia

Cerovac Caves stand as one of the most famous and significant speleological sites in Croatia, discovered in 1913 during the construction of the Zagreb-Split railway line. The caves were named after Cerovac, the nearest railway station.

Cerovac Caves are situated on the slope of South Velebit, specifically on the northeastern slope of Crnopac hill, approximately 4 km from Gračac in the direction of Knin. There, a treasure trove of archaeological remains has been discovered. Cerovac Caves have yielded a wealth of archaeological finds, including fragments of ceramic vessels, useful bronze objects, bones, stones, and even fossilized human bones. This evidence bears witness to human presence since the time of the younger Paleolithic era. In addition to the aforementioned discoveries, the caves also represent one of the largest cave bear sites in Croatia.

Even during the summer, it's recommended to prepare warmer, layered clothes and wear suitable sports shoes when visiting Cerovec Caves. Cerovec Caves form the largest tourist cave complex in Croatia, comprising the Lower, Middle, and Upper Caves with over 7 km of explored canals. During your visit, you can immerse yourself in the underground beauties of the Lower and Upper Cerovac Caves, spanning an impressive 700 meters. The combined tour of these caves typically lasts about 3 hours, with each cave explored for just under an hour. The rest of the time is spent on the walk from the centre to the caves and back.

The "Cerovac Caves" centre of excellence is situated near the entrance to the caves. From the initial 553 meters above sea level, a leisurely 15-minute walk leads to the Lower Cave, which is located at 624 meters above sea level. An additional 10-minute walk leads to the Upper Cave, where the altitude drops to 671 meters. Visitors experience a constant drip of water that shapes the cave's features into unique and unrepeatable forms, as they venture through the underground adventure with an average temperature of 7ºC. Guided tours offer an educational experience, and visiting this special place fosters a profound connection with nature, filled with genuine admiration for the underground wonders.