With its magnificent waterfalls, turquoise rivers, and lush greenery, Krka National Park has earned its reputation as one of the most beautiful destinations in Croatia. This famous park covers 42 square miles of unspoiled natural surroundings, making it a must-stop on your Croatia itinerary. With so many sections, entrances, and activities, navigating this park might be challenging for first-time visitors. That’s why I’ve created the ultimate guide to visiting Krka National Park to help you plan your trip. Let’s jump right in.
Want to read more about Croatia? You’re in luck! This post is a part of the Croatia series. Here is the complete 15-part series:
Krka National Park – The Ultimate Guide To Visiting Krka National Park, Croatia
Plitvice National Park – The Ultimate Guide To Visiting Plitvice National Park, Croatia
Plitvice vs Krka – Krka vs Plitvice National Park: Which One Should You Visit?
Mljet National Park – The Ultimate Guide To Visiting Mljet National Park, Croatia
An Overview of Krka National Park
Located in the Šibenik-Knin County in central Dalmatia, Krka National Park is one of eight national parks in Croatia. It is home to over 200 species of birds, a variety of fauna and flora, and the majestic waterfalls you often see in postcards.
Krka National Park is a popular destination for hiking and nature walks, with several scenic trails winding through the park’s forests and along the river. You can also rent kayaks or canoes to explore the river and its many hidden coves and waterfalls.
In addition to its natural beauty, Krka National Park is home to a rich cultural heritage, with several historic sites and monuments dotted throughout the park. You can explore old water mills, traditional villages, and ancient fortresses, learning about the region’s fascinating history and culture.
Know before you go
The best time to visit Krka National Park
The best time to visit Krka National Park depends on what you plan to do there and your personal preferences. Here are some things to consider when choosing a time to visit:
Weather: The summer months of June to September are the warmest and driest, with average temperatures ranging from 77 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the peak season for visitors and can get crowded, especially in July and August. The shoulder seasons of May and October offer pleasant temperatures and fewer crowds, while the winter months can be cold and rainy.
Waterfalls: The waterfalls of Krka National Park are the park’s main attraction, and their appearance changes depending on the time of year. In the spring months of April and May, the water flow is typically at its highest, making for impressive displays at the waterfalls. However, this is also when the park can be more crowded. The water flow decreases during the summer, but swimming in the park’s pools and lakes is more enjoyable due to warmer temperatures.
Activities: Krka National Park offers a range of outdoor activities, including hiking, biking, swimming, and boat tours. The best time for hiking and biking is during the cooler months of spring and fall, while swimming and water activities are most enjoyable if you visit in the summer months.
How to get to Krka National Park
There are several ways to get to Krka National Park, depending on your location and mode of transportation. Here are some of the most common ways to reach the park:
By car: If you rent a car in Croatia, you can drive to Krka National Park by taking the A1 motorway and exiting at the Šibenik exit. From there, follow the signs to the park entrance.
By bus: Regular bus services connect major cities in Croatia to Šibenik, the nearest town to Krka National Park. From Šibenik, you can take a local bus or taxi to the park entrance. You can check the schedules and book tickets online through Flixbus, Croatia Bus, or Autotrans.
By train: There are also train services that connect major cities in Croatia to Šibenik. However, the train station in Šibenik is a few miles from the town center, so you must take a bus or taxi to reach the park entrance.
By organized tour: Many tour companies offer day trips to Krka National Park from nearby towns such as Split or Dubrovnik. These tours typically include transportation, park admission, and a tour of the park’s highlights. This is the option I went with, and it’s the most convenient.
Once you arrive at the park entrance, parking lots are available for those who arrive by car or bus. From there, you can purchase your admission ticket and explore the park on foot, by bike, or by boat.
Admission and tickets
The admission fees for Krka National Park vary depending on the time of year and the type of ticket you purchase. Here is an overview of the current fees:
High season (April 1 to October 31):
Adults: 200 Kuna (approximately $27 USD)
Children (ages 7-18): 120 Kuna (approximately $16 USD)
Students and seniors (with valid ID): 160 Kuna (approximately $21 USD)
Low season (November 1 to March 31):
Adults: 80 Kuna (approximately $11 USD)
Children (ages 7-18): 50 Kuna (approximately $7 USD)
Students and seniors (with valid ID): 64 Kuna (approximately $9 USD)
Children under 7 years of age are free of charge.
The admission fee includes access to the park’s walking trails, viewpoints, and swimming areas, as well as boat rides on designated routes within the park. Guided tours and additional activities, such as bike and kayak rentals, are available for an additional fee.
Due to high demand and limited capacity, purchasing your tickets online in advance is a good idea. You can buy tickets through the official website of Krka National Park or other authorized ticket sellers.
When visiting Krka National Park, it’s essential to come prepared with the necessary items to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Here’s a list of things to consider bringing:
Comfortable walking shoes: The park involves walking on various terrains, so it’s essential to have comfortable and sturdy footwear.
Swimwear and towel: Bring swimwear and a towel to dry off afterward if you plan to swim in the park’s designated areas.
Sunscreen and hat: The sun can be intense, especially during summer. Protect yourself from sunburn by wearing sunscreen and a hat.
Water and snacks: Staying hydrated is crucial, so bring an adequate water supply. Packing some snacks or a picnic lunch is also a good idea, as there are picnic areas within the park. My go-to travel snack, the WanderBar, is a protein bar for travelers and frequent flyers. I can’t get enough of the Cocoa Crunch flavor.
Insect repellent: The park is surrounded by nature, so mosquitoes and other insects may be present. Apply insect repellent to avoid bites.
Waterproof bag or case: If you plan to bring electronics or valuables, consider having a waterproof bag or case to protect them from water splashes or rain.
Camera or binoculars: The park offers stunning natural landscapes and wildlife, so having a camera or binoculars can enhance your experience and capture memorable moments.
Extra clothing or a change of clothes: If you plan to swim, it’s helpful to have an extra set of clothes or a change of clothes for after swimming.
Cash or card: Some facilities within the park, such as food stalls or souvenir shops, may only accept cash. Cash on hand is advisable, but cards are generally accepted for park admission.
Backpack or day bag: Carry all your essentials in a comfortable backpack or day bag to keep your hands free while exploring.
Remember to check the specific guidelines and regulations of the park before your visit to ensure you have everything you need for a pleasant and responsible experience.
Getting around Krka National Park
There are several ways to get around Krka National Park and explore its offers. Here are some of the most common methods of transportation within the park:
Walking: The park has a network of walking trails that allow you to explore waterfalls, lakes, and forests on foot. The trails are well-marked and range from easy to moderate difficulty, with options for shorter or longer hikes. Walking is a convenient way to explore the park’s natural beauty at a leisurely pace.
Boat tours: The park also offers several boat tours that allow you to explore the park’s lakes and waterfalls from the water. Guided tours and self-guided boat rentals are available at designated locations within the park.
Cycling: Cycling is also an option for those who prefer to explore the park on two wheels. The park offers bike rentals, and cycling trails allow you to explore the park’s landscapes and historical sites.
Bus tours: For visitors with limited mobility or those who prefer a more guided experience, bus tours take you to the park’s main attractions. These tours are led by local guides who provide information about the park’s history and attractions.
I should note that some areas of the park are only accessible by foot, so you should be prepared for some hiking if you want to see all of the park’s attractions. In addition, during the peak season, the park gets super crowded, so you should plan accordingly. Consider visiting during off-peak times or arriving early in the day.
Things to do in Krka National Park
There’s so much to do at Krka National Park! The park offers a range of activities for you to enjoy, from hiking to swimming to exploring historical sites. Here are some of the top things to do in Krka National Park:
Visit the waterfalls: The park’s most famous attraction is its series of waterfalls, known as Skradinski Buk, Roški Slap, and Manojlovački Slap. You can walk along the boardwalks alongside the waterfalls or take a boat tour to get a closer view. These beautiful waterfalls provide the perfect backdrop for photos. You’ll have to be a little patient because dozens of other tourists will be trying to get photos here.
Swim in the lakes: The park has several swimming areas. Unfortunately, the waterfalls aren’t one of them. You used to be able to swim in the waterfalls up until 2020 when swimming was banned to protect the natural habitat. Swimming is permitted in designated areas only. Jump into the lake to cool off on a hot day.
Explore the historical sites: Krka National Park is home to several historical sites, including the Visovac Monastery, which dates back to the 15th century. You can take a boat tour to the island where the monastery is located or hike to the medieval fortress of Trošenj.
Hike the trails: The park has several hiking trails that wind through forests, bridges, and rivers. The trails range in difficulty from easy to moderate and offer opportunities to see the park’s flora and fauna up close.
Enjoy outdoor activities: Besides hiking and swimming, you can rent bikes, explore the park on two wheels, or take a kayaking tour down the river.
Learn about the park’s ecology: The park has several educational exhibits and displays that teach you about the ecology and history of the area. You can also attend ranger-led programs, and nature walks to learn more about the park’s plants and animals.
Where to stay near Krka National Park?
Wondering where to stay when you visit Krka National Park? The closest towns to the park are Skradin, Lozovac, and Knin. These are the best-rated hotels listed on my go-to booking site, booking.com, within 10 miles of Krka National Park.
I’ve been using booking.com to book accommodations, from hotels to all-inclusive resorts to apartments, since 2013. I’m now a Genius member, which means I get special discounts when I book accommodations through the site. The great thing about booking.com is that it rewards you for using the site with exclusive discounts. Check out these perfect hotels on booking.com that are within a short distance from Krka National Park and offer the nicest amenities:
This colorful hotel is just 2.5 miles away from Krka National Park. With air-conditioned rooms and a restaurant serving Dalmatian specialties, it is the perfect base for travelers on a budget. There is also a car rental service if you want to drive yourself to the park.
Large and spacious, this luxurious holiday home is 8 miles from Krka National Park. It features a living room, a terrace, two bedrooms, one bathroom, and free wifi. If you’re looking for a home away from home, this property fits the bill.
Located just 5 miles from Krka National Park, this 4-star hotel is a cozy place to stay for a few days. It has air-conditioned rooms with a private bathroom and free wifi. There is also a garden, an outdoor swimming pool, and a 24/7 front desk with multilingual staff. The pool area outside has the most stunning views of the area and looks almost like an Italian palazzo.
Frequently asked questions
Can you go to Krka National Park on your own?
You could certainly visit Krka National Park on your own, but it would be best to visit on a guided tour so that you can have a tour guide show you around. I recommend a Get Your Guide Tour of Krka National Park to see the main attractions and get an insider look at the park from a local guide.
How much time do you need in Krka National Park?
It’s a good idea to plan for at least a full day to see everything that Krka National Park offers. However, if you’re short on time, you can still see the park’s main attractions in just a few hours. Budget at least 3-4 hours to tour the park, see the waterfalls, and explore the main attractions.
Is it worth going to Krka National Park?
Krka National Park is definitely worth a visit! It is one of the most famous attractions in Croatia for a reason. There’s so much to see and do here, from the majestic waterfalls to the hiking trails.
Do you need a full day at Krka National Park?
You need a full day at Krka National Park if you want to see everything the park has to offer. If you want to see the waterfalls and tour the main attractions, 3-4 hours should be enough.
Why can’t you swim in the Krka waterfalls?
The Krka National Park authorities banned swimming at the park in 2020 to protect the wildlife and natural habitat. You can no longer swim in waterfalls or lakes. However, there is a river within the park grounds where swimming is allowed.
Do you need to buy Krka tickets in advance?
While you can purchase tickets for the park on location, buying tickets only in advance before your visit is recommended. Tickets may sell out during the peak summer travel season. In addition, the number of people visiting the park daily is controlled.
Which is better Krka or Plitvice?
Krka and Plitvice are two different national parks that each have their own unique attractions and selling points. Neither one is better. I think it’s best to visit both national parks to compare. They are both worth visiting.
Are there toilets at Krka National Park?
There are public toilets located throughout Krka National Park. You will need to pay a small fee to use them.
Travel Essentials I Can’t Live Without
The CabinZero 36L Backpack – this trusty backpack has been my go-to luggage for domestic and international trips since 2018. I’ve used dozens of backpacks and keep returning to this one. I rarely check-in luggage, so I need a carry-on bag that is spacious, sturdy, and comfortable with a laptop compartment. The Cabin Zero 36 L fits the bill. The size makes it small enough for a weekend getaway and big enough for a month of backpacking in Europe. The bag also comes with a tracker in case it gets lost. How convenient! Check out my complete review of the backpack.
Travel wifi Portable Hotspot Device
Travel WiFI Pocket WIFI Device – With portable WiFi, you can say goodbye to ridiculous roaming charges and SIM cards for good. I’ve been using the Travel WiFi Portable Hotspot device for years and love the peace of mind it gives me. The device provides 3G-4G WiFi for at least 6 hours and works in 100+ countries. In my experience, it lasts 9 hours. It also works in a variety of landscapes and terrains. I even filmed a Facebook Live from a boat in the Atlantic Ocean using my device. I can also use Google Maps, request an Uber, call my mom, and do many other things I couldn’t do before. A quick tip: turn off the device when you’re not using it so the battery can last longer.
Booking.com – Booking.com is my go-to website for booking discounted accommodations worldwide. What I love most about Booking.com is the variety of properties you can find, from luxury apartments to treehouses to university housing. It’s hard to beat the insanely low prices. The website also has a flexible cancellation policy, which is great if things come up or you change your mind.