Plitvice Lakes National Park is one of the greatest natural wonders of Europe. Embraced by high wooded mountains, one beneath another lie sixteen beautiful lakes of crystal blue-green water. Connected to each other by a series of foaming cascades and thundering waterfalls, the lakes are fed by many rivers and streams. Over the millennia, waters of these lakes have dissolved the limestone rock and carved out the valley in which they now lie.
Through the process of sedimentation of calcium carbonate and the work of special kinds of algae and moss, tufa or travertine has been deposited, and is still deposited to form the natural dams that separate the lakes.
Since the process is going on today, just as it always has, new travertine barriers, curtains, stalactites, channels and cascades are being built and the existing ones are changing. As it is deposited, the tufa coasts the beds and banks of the lakes, giving the water sparkling beauty and petrifying trees and stones which fall into the lakes. The water keeps breaking through the travertine barriers at different places, so that the entire process of formation of lakes and dams is alive and very dynamic.
The forests, which in some places seem almost primeval, contain a wealth and variety of animal and plant life. There are deer, bears, wolves, wild boar, wild cats, small game and many kinds of birds. The waters have excellent trout. Hunting, fishing and swimming are not allowed.