Day 8: We were up and out early around 7 to make our way to Plitvice Lakes National Park which I had been dying to go to ever since my best friend from Freshman year in highschool, Petra had introduced me to the incredible country, Croatia. Unfortunately we had a 3.5 hour drive to the park, made into 4.5 hours as the GPS took us to the wrong entrance and we had to go all the way around the south side of the park… which put is there about noon. The parking area was all back in these trees and woods and PACKED. We somehow managed to find a decent spot but the number of cars did NOT look good. We walked up to the ticketing area to find 2 distrubingly long lines or people JUST to buy tickets… Braden stood in one while I went to find the bathrooms where I stood in a line for the worst toilets I came across the whole trip. (It was weird cause the toilets had paper and flushers.. but were just holes in the floor with little tread areas to place your feet and squat. This was quite difficult as I also got a stall with a door that didn’t latch so there I was.. trying to squat over a hole that was set too far back to simultaneously hold the door close as well. I resolved it would actually be easier to pee in the woods, so that was what I was going to do) I walked back to Braden to discover he’d barely moved at all in 20 minutes ( which meant that line was easily 1.5 or more) Based on the types of narrow trails in the park and how crowded it was going to be, I knew we were going to be miserable if we stayed (plus I still had to pee) so we paid the 7 Kuna parking fee for the 45 minutes we’d been there and left.
On our way south to our next lodging we stopped for some lunch… pizza. and for me to finally use a realy restroom. Hallelujah! Then it was only another 30 minutes or so to our hotel for the night situated in Jasenice (about 45 km outside the large city ZADAR) and kind of on it’s own piece of coast. We checked in and relaxed for a bit while I searched feverishly for something to do instead with the rest of our day. Zadar would’ve been cool, but we would’ve had to drive and we were kind of over having to find parking spots so that wasn’t sounding appealing. We discovered from our host that we were only 10 Km from one of the entrances to the lesser known Paklenica National Park. Done. With preliminary research (meaning I checked trip advisor and people said it was cool) we headed to the closest entrance… which was a dirt road to free parking which was nice and a closed office…. ok? So it was free as well. sweet. only we had no idea where we were going to hike. There was one main trail leading from the parking area into a canyon so we followed it.

The one and only trail… 
I kind of just hoped there would be some trail splits for us to explore and maybe hike up to get a view. Well the good news was we didn’t see another soul. Seriously there was NO ONE hiking with us. There weren’t any trail splits and the canyon was cool.. but you just kind of follow the bottom without ever hiking up to get much of a view. We followed it for about an hour before turning around to hike back. 
The little spots were trail markers… just in case you couldn’t find your way lol. My favorite part was climbing up this section. It added a little excitement. 
Braden climbing back the other way since we turned around not far past this section. 
All in all the solitude was cool, but the canyon bore a lot of resemblance to Utah as it was mostly rocky and not all that green. lol So maybe not the most unique place we saw but at least it got us out of out hotel. 
We had left over pizza from lunch for dinner with some snacks from the store that was just underneath our rooms. We also had  private terrace that we watched one of the best sunsets of the whole trip from while we drank like 1.5 L of coke. lol We found we were getting a little addicted to the beverage on this trip but it was a pleasant evening and a fairly relaxing day. 

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