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Published: August 22nd 2015
Plitvicka Jezera National Park
ITS THE JOURNEY – NOT THE DESTINATION.
From time to time you hear that old chestnut. It’s true. Sometimes we get so caught up in getting “there” we forget about the trip to get there.Well today we enjoyed an early morning drive through some of the prettiest hills and vales you could ever enjoy. It’s been raining heavily for a few days in this Karlovac region of Croatia and this morning we were promised a sunny day. But before the nice sunny day came mist and fog. So as the fog lifted we drove into the hills toward Plitvicka Jezera. Too bad you were not there. You missed out on it.
Besides the 280 sq klm virgin fir forest the national park has a rare feature. That rare feature is a porous carbonate rock accumulating and building by the sedimentation of calcium carbonate from the flowing water. This process builds sills and structures in the water. Those structures present rapids and waterfalls where the rivers flow, as well as dry white rock in dry creek beds left after newer accumulating structures caused a change in water course direction.
Now the journey takes a slower pace. Is it true that - When a queue is part of the journey, then the ENJOYMENT on getting “there” is greater. Or should the word be RELIEF?
By the time we reached the entrance gate the queue to buy a ticket was of mythological proportions. After our 4+ hour wait to get into Bulgaria – from turkey- we are queue gurus. This one was really a pup. It extended about 20 meters out from the ticket windows and then along a concourse which is about 100 meters long, then down the other side of that concourse the other way a further 100 meters. With vehicles in a queue – when one vehicle goes through the gate, the other vehicles very quickly move up – say within two minutes for a 300 meter queue. With humans the ripple to take up the slack when a few people get through the gate takes much longer. Maybe as much as 3 minutes in a 250 meter queue. These are my observations as a very experienced queue monitor and keen observer of changes to human behaviour in slow moving
queues. Anyhow we were through eventually. There was an interesting souvenir shop to take it in turns to go window shopping in. From when we entered the car park to when we got to the ticket window was 1 hour 46 minutes.
I had been recalling some advice that the greasy chicken at Plitvicka had some mouth watering qualities to make the visit worthwhile. However I became distracted by the choice of sandwich fillings. Choices included a mixture of cherry, cheese, and poppy or try walnut, apple, cheese, and poppy. So distracted did I become that I settled for cheese and salami sandwich we had paced in our bag.
The walk beside the lakes is jaw dropping spectacular. My photos are nowhere good enough to show the real beauty and the teal blue of the water. There is an interesting bus ride – it’s a prime mover towing a couple of trolleys full of people – all of whom have been queuing up to get on the bus Some might call it a train. And there’s a cute boat ride. One boat takes you from the first platform to the
second which is just about 60 meters trip across the river. Then you take the trip from second platform to the third. Oh did I mention that you have to queue up for some time for each ride.
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