Plitvice Lakes is Croatia’s largest natural attraction: an awesome series of lakes and cascading waterfalls surrounded by lush green vegetation. It’s hugely popular in the summer, but people are waking up to its potential as a winter destination, when its conflux of 16 lakes are transformed into a winter wonderland that sparkles with icy stalactites and snow-dusted pine trees. Tóth Tamás, a photographer-adventurer from Budapest, recently took a trip there and captured it in all its eerie, epic beauty.
Straddled between the coast and the capital Zagreb, the National Park is located in inland Croatia, a bucolic area defined by its agricultural way of life and unspoiled natural beauty. Located on the motorway that connects Split and Zagreb, the National Park is easily accessible by bus or car – and there’s a cluster of basic restaurants and hotels for visitors wanting to stay the night.
These lakes have been carved out from centuries of travertine deposits – a calcium carbonate mineral that trickles downstream with the current, eventually hardening and creating a lattice of barriers and dams in which the lakes are formed.
The lakes’ eerie, bluer-than-blue color is a result of these minerals and organisms, which change color depending on when you visit and the angle of the sunlight.
Viewed at a height, the lakes take on an enchanting turquoise hue.
Plitvice is also home to 1146 kinds of plants, 140 species of birds and over 50 mammals. Wild cats, brown bears and deer skulk in the wooded foothills of the park.
Check out Tóth Tamás photo gallery for more breathtaking pictures.