How to visit the frozen Plitvice Lakes in winter (2024)

Discover how to experience the magic of Plitvice Lakes in winter. From frozen waterfalls to what to wear in the snow landscape, you’ll find it all in this guide.

Plitvice Lakes in winter

The clear turquoise water and beautiful waterfalls make Plitvice Lakes a popular place in the summer months. But what about the off-season, can you visit Plivice in winter? And how’s the weather? Are the lakes all frozen?

In this guide, I’ll answer all those questions and more you might have about visiting Plitvice in winter.

Let’s dive in.

Read next: How to visit Plitvice in summer

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What is Plitvice Lakes?

The Plitvice Lakes National Park is one of the most beautiful natural wonders in Croatia. The park is home to 16 stunning lakes, connected by a series of waterfalls and cascades.

Plitvice is located in central Croatia, close to the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Is it worth visiting Plitvice Lakes in winter?

If you like snowy landscapes and frozen waterfalls, then yes: visiting Plitvice Lakes in winter is definitely worth it!

While there are a few drawback to visiting off-season, the rewards make up for it – from the stunning frozen scenery to the feeling of having the park almost all to yourself.

Important: Plitvice Lakes National Park is open year-round, but the Upper Lakes of the park are closed during winter (from the first week of November to the first half of March).

Plitvice Lakes in winter - Plitvice Lakes in winter
Plitvice Lakes during winter

Plitvice Lakes winter temperature

During the winter months, temperatures in Plitvice Lakes typically range from -5°C to 5°C, with occasional freezing temperatures.

It’s also relatively humid during this time of year, with a good chance of rain or snow.

Read next: Is Plitvice Lakes worth visiting? Everything you should know

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Plitvice Lakes Croatia in winter
Plitvice Lakes National Park Croatia in winter

Things to do in Plitvice in winter

While most people visit Plitvice Lakes during the summer months, winter is actually a great time to explore the park without the crowds. Here are a few of the best activities you shouldn’t miss during your visit:

Winter hiking

Plitvice Lakes National Park is a winter wonderland, and hiking is one of the best ways to experience it.

The park’s scenic trails are beautifully covered in snow and frost during the coldest months, which is a magical experience.

The crisp winter air and the peacefulness of the park is just unique. Be sure to dress warmly and wear sturdy hiking boots, as the trails can be slippery in the winter.

Frozen waterfalls

Plitvice Lakes is famous for its stunning waterfalls, tranquil lakes, and lush forests. In the winter, the park takes on a magical look that is truly breathtaking.

The frozen waterfalls are especially beautiful, with the ice creating intricate patterns and formations. Take your time to explore the park’s many trails and take in the stunning scenery. It’s amazing.

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Pros of visiting Plitvice National Park in winter

While winter may not be the most popular time to visit the park, it certainly has its advantages. Here are the benefits:

Less crowds

For one, if you visit during winter, you’ll be able to enjoy the park’s serene beauty without competing with the usual crowds. The park’s trails are also much less crowded in winter, which makes it easier to explore at your own pace without feeling rushed.

Beautiful wintry scenery

Plitvice’s winter scenery is truly breathtaking, with frozen waterfalls and snow-covered landscapes. If you visit Plitvice Lakes in winter, you can expect to see a completely different side of the park. The snow-covered trees and frozen waterfalls create a serene and magical atmosphere that is absolutely breathtaking.

See more wildlife

Another advantage of visiting Plitvice Lakes in winter is the chance to see the park’s wildlife up close.

Many of the park’s animals are more active during the colder months, and you may be lucky enough to spot a fox, deer, or even a bear during your visit (let’s hope not). Just be sure to keep a safe distance and never approach or feed any of the park’s animals.

Heaven for photographers

If you like nature or travel photography, winter is the perfect time to visit Plitvice Lakes.

The park’s frozen waterfalls and snow-covered landscapes provide a stunning backdrop for photos, and the lack of crowds means you’ll have plenty of time to set up the perfect shot.

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Tips for visiting Plitvice Lakes winter

When visiting Plitvice Lakes in winter, it’s important to take a few precautions to stay safe and warm. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Dress in layers to stay warm and adjust your clothing as needed throughout the day
  • Be wary of icy trails and be sure to use trekking poles so you don’t slip
  • Check the weather before you arrive, and dress accordingly
  • Before visiting, check the Plitvice Lakes National Park website to find out which tour programs are available and which entry to use (only entry 1 is open during the winter).
  • Due to shorter days, business hours are reduced.
  • Wear sturdy, waterproof boots and be careful because the trails and boardwalks might be slippery.
  • Bring water

Best time to visit Plitvice Lakes in winter

The best time to visit Plitvice Lakes in winter is from January to March. During this time, Plitvice Lakes get the least rainfall. If you’re lucky, there might be snow and the park transforms into a winter wonderland.

Keep in mind that temperatures can get quite cold during the winter months, so make sure to dress warm. Winter in Croatia can be unpredictable, with snowfall and icy conditions.

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What to wear to Plitvice in winter

If you’re planning a winter visit to Plitvice Lakes, you’ll want to make sure you come prepared with the right clothing. Here are a few essential items to pack for your trip:

Where to stay at Plitvice Lakes in winter

If you’re planning an overnight stay at Plitvice Lakes, there are a few options for accommodations during the winter months.

I stayed at the Pansion Danica (⭐ 9.3) which is a lovely bed & breakfast. This guesthouse is only 700 meters from entrance 1 and the bus stop. I really liked it, and the staff is super friendly.

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❄️ Plitvice in winter FAQ

Is it worth going to Plitvice in the winter?

Yes! The landscape in Plitvice is completely different in winter and there are less tourists.

What is the weather like in Plitvice in winter?

The weather in Plitvice is between -5° to 4 degrees during the winter months. Get ready for snow and frozen waterfalls.

Are the Plitvice Lakes open in November?

Yes. Plitvice Lakes park is open daily, all year round – also in November. Keep in mind that the Lower Lakes are closed in the winter months.

What are the best months to visit Plitvice?

The best time to visit Plitvice Lakes is from June to September. During these months, you’ll get the best weather, and the waterfalls will be most powerful.

How many days should you spend in Plitvice?

One day is the perfect amount of time to spend in Plitvice Lakes.

Do Plitvice Lakes freeze?

Yes, and the waterfalls are also frozen when temperatures get below 0 degrees C. It’s a beautiful sight!

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