The morning was filled with the sharing of stories and packing up to leave the boat. I was sad to say goodbye to all of my new friends, but also thankful for all the time we did have together cycling through this Adriatic paradise. After our goodbyes, it was time to start our own solo adventure around Western Europe. We checked into our Air B&B and headed for Krka National Park. The drive was about an hour and half. Found the signage and directions in the park to be a bit confusing, but oh did we manage! This park had some features that I personally found questionable: being able to swim near the main waterfalls, signage that didn’t explain not to go off trail, and the amount of people sunbathing on the grass. Other than that, I’d say that our time in the park was stupendous and soooooo beautiful.
So let’s start off with some orientation to the area. We came in from the right side of the map, the Lozovac Enterence. When you arrive, there is a parking lot on the right hand side which is free. Tickets were sold at the information station right here at the enternce, you can’t miss it. From here, we walked over to the shuttle bus which would take us to the main area of the park. Now it was time to explore! The scenery was breathtaking: tall lush trees, cascading aquamarine water, ferns, and wildflowers. The whole loop took us a couple of hours, but kept us enthralled the entire time. The most famous waterfall here at Krka is Skradinski buk. Surrounded by a wooden walkway, souvenir shops, and swimmers, it is truly a sight to behold. Much of the stone in Krka National Park is called Travertine. Calcium carbonate (limestone) is the name for travertine. It was very neat to observe fossils encased in the stone, and it was very prominent all around the park.
The formation of travertine begins at the rapids, at uneven places in the river bed, on submerged branches and the like. As the water splashes, the chemical balance of the water is disturbed and CO2 is released. Calcium carbonate (CaCO3) then precipitates out of the water and is deposited on submerged objects. Bacteria, algae and mosses must be present for the deposition of travertine, as travertine attaches to the surface of the moss in the form of microcrystals of calcite that adhere to the sticky secretions of blue-green algae and some species of diatomaceous algae. Both organic and anorganic particles (fragments of animal shells, grains of limestone and dolomite rock, etc.) can be encrusted on these secretions, thus forming a core upon which the calcite crystals will grow. Therefore, these microscopic plants have the role of “catching” the microcrystals of calcite and creating a core around which more calcite will be encrusted, i.e. travertine will be deposited, thus forming a new “brick” in the building of the waterfall.
– Taken from the Krka National Park website
After getting our fill of the waterfalls (and the crowds) we headed back to the car to drive farther into the park. We stopped at Visocac Lake. You can choose to take a ferry to Visovac Island by a small boat to see an old Catholic Monestary founded by the Franciscans in 1445, but seeing as it was late, we decided against it. It was now time to drive back to our Air B&B in Trogir. With darkness approaching, and our excitement still running, we drove into the sunset toward home.