Friday, 12 November 2021

KK Split Celebrates 87:77 (38:33) Victory in ABA League

November 12, 2021 - Krka delivered a good fight, but Hasahn French's injury in the 3rd quarter helped bring KK Split the victory. 

KK Split started the game at the bottom of the ABA League table after seven completed games with only a single win so far against Cibona during their last encounter on October 31st. However, the victory was close and resolved only by a single point with 77:76 for the Yellows (and meant an impressive series of 10 consecutive wins against the team from Zagreb). Krka arrived in Split from Slovenia with three wins out of seven games, making them 10th in the table. Since all the guest’s wins were during their home games, KK Split hoped to make up some ground and establish a position in the race to stay in the league.

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Burak Canboy

The game went back and forth in the first minutes while both teams tried not to make too many mistakes and concentrated on their outside shooting. After a first 6:6 tie, both sides threw in two successful threes to tie the game again at 12:12 before home coach Srđan Subotić had his men defend much more aggressively and saw it rewarded with a 20:14 lead by the end of the first quarter. 

However, the guests from Novo Mesto, who are currently leading the Slovenian national league, did not give up and got back into the game and continued to do so every time that the Yellows seemed to pull away. 

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Burak Canboy

Krka coach Dalibor Damjanović lost his cool several times and was not happy with the referees' calls. Finally, in the third quarter, he was punished with a technical foul after seeing his star player Hasahn French being fouled and falling down hard. The center had to be escorted off the field injured and was not able to return. 

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Burak Canboy

Even without their big man, the team in green fought back again and stayed only a few possessions behind Split until the key moment of the game. Three and a half minutes to go at 75:73, a three-pointer by KK Split guard Barić then a steal followed by a fast-break lay-up for 5 points within just seconds first broke Krka's motivation two dunks by Bajo in the following two possessions broke their neck and sealed the victory.

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Burak Canboy

Despite Split scoring 25 points from turnovers and leading in most statistical categories, the game could have gone either way and was a very attractive game to watch. Instead, the spectators got to see plenty of dunks and good outside scoring with the better end for the home team. 

Six yellow players ended up scoring in double digits, led by Nejc Barič, who delivered a convincing game and shone in clutch situations. With 20 points and 10 assists, he was named Man of the Match. The top scorer for Krka was point-guard Stipčević, who had to play the entire 40 minutes, made 3 of his 4 three-point attempts, and totalled 19 points. 

Referees: Marko Juras, Dragan Porobić, Radoš Arsenijević

Box Score: https://www.aba-liga.com/match-live/50/21/1/Boxscore/q1/1/home/split-krka/ 

Tuesday, 26 October 2021

Krka National Park Offers Promotional Entrance Fee Until October 31st

October 26, 2021 - As it joins the promotional campaign of Croatian Tourism Month, Krka National Park offers a special ticket price for all its attractions, which will be valid from October 25th to 31st.

With a special ticket price for all land sites in the Park of 65 kn for adults and 52 kn for children aged seven to eighteen, which will be valid from 25 to 31 October, Krka National Park offers an interesting discount and thus joins the promotional campaign Croatian Tourism Month, which is carried out by Ministry of Tourism and Sports and the Croatian National Tourist Board, reports Turističke Priče. For children up to the age of seven, entry to the Krka National Park has always been free.

The aim of the action is to encourage the citizens of the Republic of Croatia to get to know and visit different parts of our country at better prices for many tourist services and products, from the accommodation, transport, and sightseeing to catering services and various experiences, with the aim of encouraging domestic tourism and increasing tourist traffic. in the off-season.

Every season on the Krka is special for some reason. Painted with autumn colors, Krka provides a real experience: pleasant temperatures, the liveliness of flora and fauna, plenty of water, pronounced geomorphological forms of rocks, and travertine. In addition, the enjoyment of mastering the educational hiking trails and cycling routes will make the visit unforgettable. Krka National Park includes the largest and most beautiful part of the Krka River and the lower course of the Čikola River. The basic phenomenon of the Krka National Park is tufa, which, along the entire course of the river, has formed seven enchanting travertine waterfalls. The most famous and most visited waterfall, Skradinski buk, is the longest travertine barrier in Europe.

The Skradinski buk and Roški slap sites are open for visitors from 9 am to 5 pm in October, and the upstream sites from 10 am to 5 pm, the Krka National Park reported.

Krka National Park is an absolute gem, with a range of fantastic things to see and do for all the family. In partnership with Krka National Park, we are delighted to present the first TC video guide below. 

Check our full guide on all Croatian National and Nature Parks HERE.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Wednesday, 22 September 2021

PHOTOS: Beautiful Locations of Active Šibenik's Sports and Recreation

September 22, 2021 – From cycling and kayaking to hiking and an epic zip line, see the fantastic natural landscape that holds active Šibenik's thrilling offer.

When temperatures ease off, the Croatian coast welcomes a whole different type of guest. Spring, Autumn and Winter is the favourite time for sports enthusiasts and fitness fans to visit. And, few places on the Mediterranean have an offer complete like active Šibenik.

Outside of the peak season, the stunning nature that surrounds Šibenik is free from the bustle of visitors. Cyclists and runners speed by unobstructed. Maybe they'll pass a couple of hikers enjoying the same trails and spectacular views?

St_Nicholas_Fortress.jpgSt Anthony's channel, St Nicholas Fortress and the cycle and walking path that reaches it via an island © Šibenik Tourist Board

In the evenings, during their rest time, active Šibenik's guests have the city's best hotels, restaurants and charming Old Town almost to themselves. They share the cafe, bar and restaurant terraces only with Šibenik residents, relaxing once more now the city is returned to them.

Key to Šibenik's year-round appeal for fitness and sport fans is the city's unique landscape. No place in Croatia has natural assets like Šibenik. It is surrounded on all sides by a remarkable and startlingly varied topography.

Firstly, between Šibenik city harbour and the open Adriatic is a long waterway – St. Anthony's Channel. It is bordered on either side by two huge stretches of wild nature. Then, at the rear of the town, elevated up from sea level and next to Barone Fortress, the area of Šubićevac. Here, the entrance to the vast Šubićevac Forest Park, much of it an untamed, natural landscape. Thirdly, the vast Krka National Park, which lies just 10 kilometres north-east of Šibenik

Active Šibenik: St Anthony's Channel

SibenikfromAnthony2.JPGSailboats and speed boats sharing St Anthony's channel © Marc Rowlands

An epic 2000 metre long waterway, St Anthony's Channel is both a gateway to the open sea and the entrance to the city for anyone sailing into Šibenik. It is 140 – 220 metres wide and is bordered on each side by near untouched Dalmatian nature. On one side, sheer cliffs for one wall of the channel. At the top, dense pine forests, walking, hiking and cycling trails. Also, the famous recreation site of Martinska.

cyclepathsib.JPGCycle paths of Šibenik © Marc Rowlands

On the opposite side of the channel, a very different layout of the land. Here, the pines are much lower and closer to the channel. Between the two, idyllic beaches - the best in Šibenik – line a pathway designated for running, walking and cycling. Those on bicycles drop down from small hills on the interior. After following the path at the side of the water, their ultimate reward is the spectacular St Nicholas' Fortress. On both sides of St Anthony's Channel you'll see incredible views of Šibenik, its harbour and the side opposite.

_MG_9430rygujtkr45.JPGCycling across a section of St Anthony's channel © Marc Rowlands

For those who prefer recreation on the water, St Anthony's Channel is perfect to explore by kayak. It's also one of the easiest ways to discover all of Šibenik's best beaches. Sticking close to the pine-sheltered coast, beautiful sailboats pass you in the centre of the channel, on their way to or from the city.

Active Šibenik: Šubićevac Forest Park

2019-07-24_1627_1.jpgView over Šibenik, with Šubićevac Forest Park at the rear of the city © Šibenik Tourist Board

To visitors, Šubićevac Forest Park is the least famous of all Šibenik's recreational areas. A huge stretch of forestland, much loved by city residents, it rises above the city near Barone Fortress. The section of forest closest to the Šubićevac is designated as a city park. Within this part, you'll find a children's playground, specially designed to be accessible to all, including children with special needs.

jusosibenik3.jpgEasily accessible section of Šubićevac Forest Park © Javna ustanova Športski objekti Šibenik

Throughout this section, designated paths for cycling and walking. Running to the southeast, a much larger area of near untouched forest. Here, a wilderness ripe for runners or hikers to explore. It's worth seeking out the tiny Church of St Michael here.

jusosibenik2.jpgPaths through forest wilderness © Javna ustanova Športski objekti Šibenik

Residents say the very best views of Šibenik come from Šubićevac Forest Park. Certainly, they are breathtaking.

jusosibenik1.jpgThe best views over the city? It's a tough one to call - Šibenik has many contenders © Javna ustanova Športski objekti Šibenik

Active Šibenik: Krka National Park

otok-visovac.jpgIsland in Krka National Park © Šibenik Tourist Board

A series of wide pools, fed by cascading waterfalls, Krka is one of Croatia’s best known and most spectacular National Parks. Famous water features like the unforgettable Skradinski Buk dominate the park's postcard images. You'll find it near the park's most southerly entrance, very close to Šibenik. But, beyond this eye-catching introduction lies a further 109 square kilometers of spectacular National Park to discover. The best way to experience it is by walking, hiking or cycling.

vidikovacgoris02jpg.jpgCountless captivating viewpoints © Krka National Park

Hiking and walking trails of Krka National Park

lozovac01jpg.jpgWalking and hiking trails © Krka National Park

The park's hiking and walking trails give you the most thrilling views of this epic landscape and its wealth of flora and fauna. At the side of the trails, educational panels detailing the plants and animals you pass.

kljucica05jpg.jpgEpic landscape © Krka National Park

There are three circular trails: Skradinski buk (1900 m), Roški Slap (1360 m) and Krka Monastery (2100 m). A walking/cycling trail also leads to Skradinski buk from the Skradin bridge (3400 m), while from Lozovac, it is possible to take a forest trail (875 m) down to the park's longest waterfall.

roskislap10jpg.jpgWalking over waterfalls © Krka National Park

The shortest trail is 300 m long and leads to Bilušića buk, while the longest trail is Stinice-Roški slap-Oziđana pećina and covers 8.5 kilometres. In total, there are 7 spectacular waterfalls to find as the river Krka descends through the park.

Cycling routes of Krka National Park

vidikovac.jpegBreathtaking views on the cycling and walking routes © Krka National Park

Bicycling through Krka National Park is a journey of endless enjoyment. If your perfect cycling route offers stunning landscapes, then this is the place for you. But, if you're curious to learn about the park's cultural and historical heritage, then cycling also helps you unlock these park secrets.

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No less than fourteen cycling routes crisscross the park. They are divided into three types:

Road route - perfect for racing bikes and dedicated cyclists

Trekking & family route - a mixture of paved roads and gravel paths, perfect for city bikes, mountain bikes, families with children and cyclists of any age and ability.

Mountain biking route – a mixture of gravel paths and unarranged forest paths, with sharp ascents and descents, designed for mountain bike enthusiasts in good physical condition and with advanced cycling skills.

tonkaijaskradin.jpegCycling above Skradin © Krka National Park

Šibenik zipline

On the northeast corner of the park, stretching across an epic canyon, one of Croatia's most thrilling ziplines. Flying from cliffs hundreds of metres above, so vast is the canyon that you can barely see the thrillseekers at the end of the first line. And, after that, there are still another two to go!

For more information and/or booking any of these activities, visit/contact Šibenik Tourist Board here

For more on great things to do in Šibenik, be sure to check Total Croatia News's dedicated pages here

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Skradinski Buk Pond Turtles Return after Long Absence from Krka National Park

September 19, 2021 - Skradinski buk pond turtles have returned to their ideal living conditions in Krka National Park, primarily thanks to fewer visitors caused by the pandemic. 

After a long absence, the strictly protected pond turtle species (Emys orbicularis) has found a haven at the foot of Europe's longest travertine barrier. An adult and two young individuals have been confirmed, reports Sibenik.in.

The pond turtle has ideal living conditions in Krka National Park. It is most numerous in the middle and upper course of the Krka river, especially along the banks near the Krka monastery: the marsh at the foot Carigradska draga is its essential habitat. Thanks to the reduction in the number of visitors caused by the pandemic, the pond turtle returned to the area of Skradinski Buk after many years. The swimming ban in Skradinski Buk has further reduced the pressure on the aquatic ecosystem, so this year they lay eggs. The natural habitats of pond turtles are stagnant and slow-flowing freshwater rich in vegetation, such as muddy-bottomed lakes, ponds, rivers, canals, floodplain forests, and brackish waters. Since it is a cold-blooded animal, it is suitable for quiet places to sunbathe, mostly on stumps and rocks.

The pond turtle is a strictly protected species: protected by the Nature Protection Act, the European Union Directive on the Protection of Natural Habitats and Wild Fauna and Flora (Habitats Directive), and the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (Bern Convention). Furthermore, Emys orbicularis is the target species of the ecological network Natura 2000, a conservation area important for species and habitat types HR2000918 Krka and the surrounding plateau. The name Emys comes from the Greek word "emys" (ὲμύς), which means "freshwater turtle".

The pond turtle is also active at night when it hunts and searches the surroundings but never moves away from the water. It feeds mainly on invertebrates, most often beetles, snails, shrimp, earthworms, and tadpoles, less often on amphibians and smaller fish, and least on aquatic plants. It has a hard shell, more flattened than a land turtle and slightly wider at the back. In populations in the Mediterranean, the shell is about fifteen centimeters long. It has five well-visible toes with claws on its front legs and four on its hind legs.

Males and females are easily recognizable, primarily by size: females are larger than males. As the animal grows, so do the plates that cover the carapace (upper) and plastron (lower part of the shell). They form growth zones, with which the age of the individual can be determined by counting the rings. Like rings on a tree, they grow in concentric rings spreading from one corner. Growth largely depends on the climatic conditions where the turtle lives, so it is slowed down in winter or during the dry season. In the unfavorable season for growth, certain parts of the rings tear and darken, and in the good season, they expand. Other factors that affect growth rate are sex, habitat characteristics, diet type, and food availability.

The pond turtle chooses land-laying areas with sandy surfaces rich in necessary food and safe from predators. They have the so-called temperature-dependent determination of embryonic sex: eggs incubated at temperatures below 25° C only males will develop, and those incubated above 30° C only females will develop. The ratio of males to females due to different natural conditions during the day and night is generally 50:50. Pond turtles reach sexual maturity from 6 to 8 when they grow to a length of about 12.5 cm. They are then considered fully developed adult individuals. Their development is sensitive and depends on ecological, genetic factors, food availability, and habitat quality. The oldest record of the presence of a pond turtle in "Kerka" at "Scardone" dates from 1780 (in the work of Pietro Nutrizi Chrisogon Notizie per servire alla storia naturale della Dalmazia).

For more, follow our lifestyle section.

Friday, 30 April 2021

Krka National Park Ticket Discount: Walk for a 20% Cheaper Visit in May

April 30, 2021 - Throughout the month of May, a Krka National Park ticket discount is going to be offered in the Park's "Go and Walk" action, which provides a 20% cheaper ticket to any visitor ready to enter and exit the premises on foot.

Krka National Park, as stated on their website, is going to be inviting visitors to enter the Park on foot and get a 20 percent discount on their individual ticket price for doing so. This offer is part of the ''Go and Walk'' action, which starts on Saturday, May the 1st, and is set to continue throughout the whole month. 

''The ''Go and Walk'' promotional action implies that people must enter and exit the park on foot in order to get the Krka National Park ticket discount of 20%. All of the park's other services, as well as tickets for visitors who will enter the park by boat or a bus, will be charged by as normal,'' according to Krka National Park's official website. 

The discount varies pending on where you intend to go. If you decide to go to the main spectacle of the park, The Skradinski Buk waterfall by taking the hitchhiker trail, either from Lozovac or Skradinski Bridge, the promotional price is 80 kuna. Apart from Skradinski Buk, all other land localities in the park are set to be included in that price. Kids aged 7-18 accompanied by parents or guardians will have to pay only 64 kuna for their ticket, while for kids up to the age of 7, entrance to the park is free of charge. 

If you decide to walk only until Roski Slap, an adult ticket will cost 40 kunas and for kids (7-18-year-olds), only 32 kuna. 

The third option is also the Krka Monastary and Burnum archaeological site. An adult ticket price for that path is 32 kuna, while the children's ticket costs a mere 24 kuna. 

''With the ''Go and Walk'' action, the Public Institute of Krka National Park wants to encourage the active visiting of the park, and the usage of educational-hitchhiking trails too, by reducing the usage of public transport by bus and boats and having a direct impact on lowering CO2 emissions,'' said Nella Slavica of the Public Institute of Krka National Park.

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© Krka National Park

Krka National Park is also a holder of the ''Stay Safe in Croatia'' badge, and the park is being very careful in ensuring epidemical measures are respected by both the visitors and employees while informing the public about the benefits of being out in the open air during these challenging times. 

Back in the former Yugoslavia, on January the 24th, 1985, the Parliament of the Socialist Republic of Croatia declared Krka a National Park, and it has enjoyed an enormous amount of popularity ever since. This gorgeous park remains a place of natural and cultural heritage, a place to learn, a place to rest, and a place to enjoy a lovely escape from the stress of modern life. 

Learn more about Krka National Park on our TC page.

For more about travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Thursday, 4 March 2021

Visitors Choose Name 'Torak' for New Boat in Krka National Park Fleet

March 4, 2021 – Thanks to the online poll conducted with visitors and social media followers, a new boat in the Krka National Park fleet got the name Torak, after a lake-shaped spring in the center of the Krka and Čikola's fairytale confluence.

Krka National Park recently launched online voting to name a new modern ship that will start sailing in their fleet this spring. Lozovac, Torak, Čikola, and Sveti Ivan Krstitelj were the name options, and visitors could vote for the best. Today, Krka National Park published the survey results, and the new modern boat is named – Torak.

Located in the center of the fairytale confluence of the Čikola and Krka rivers, the Torak spring, due to its round shape, looks more like a lake, so it is called a lake spring. Krka National Park's friends, visitors, and followers also liked the name Torak and decided to give it to a new modern boat for sailing from Skradinski Buk to Roški Slap waterfalls.

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Torak lake spring / Krka National Park

The Torak lake spring diameter is 150 meters, the depth is 30 meters, and the spring itself is located at the bottom of the lake. This karst spring amazes with its beauty because of its unusual position and the characteristic flora of the lawns and bushes surrounding it.

The name of the new boat in the Krka National Park fleet was confirmed by the Inland Navigation Directorate of the Ministry of the Sea, Transport, and Infrastructure.

A boat ride from Skradinski Buk to Roški Slap has been a special attraction since the very beginning of Krka's excursions. That is why Krka National Park strengthened its fleet with a new ship for 98 passengers and two crew members. This modern vessel has one open and one closed deck, with comfortable seats and an air conditioning system. It is equipped with a ramp and places for people with disabilities.

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New modern boat Torak / Krka National Park

"Visitors especially enjoy the boat ride, so we must provide them with a complete experience of sailing on the river in our safe and modern boats," said the Krka National Park director Nella Slavica.

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Friday, 12 February 2021

Lozovac, Torak, Čikola? Choose Best Name for New Modern Boat in Krka National Park

February 12, 2021 – This spring, a new modern boat will sail along Krka National Park's favourite excursion route – from Skradinski Buk to Roški Slap waterfalls. Everything is set to sail, except for the boat's name. To contribute to Krka National Park and its offer, you can choose the name that suits the boat the best in an online poll.

As Krka National Park reports, the Public Institution of the Park strengthened its fleet with a new ship intended for 98 passengers and two crew members. Since ships' names are important and significant in maritime tradition, Krka National Park has invited the park's visitors and friends to choose the name for the new boat.

The most unusual confluence in Croatia

Name suggestions are Lozovac, Torak, Čikola, or Sv. Ivan Krstitelj (St John the Baptist) and voting is open via the following link until February the 15th. All four names are related to this particular excursion route, and a boat ride from Skradinski Buk to Roški Slap has been a unique attraction since the very beginning of excursions on Krka.

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New modern boat / Photo: Krka National Park

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Skradinski Buk waterfall / Photo: Romulić and Stojčić

The pier leading to the middle course of the Krka can be reached via Lozovac, the gateway to Krka National Park.

Namely, when the powerful travertine barrier of Skradinski Buk rose, Krka became a lake unto the island of Visovac, and the mouth of the Čikola river actually sank. This is how the most unusual confluence in Croatia was created.

The Kaličko sod, which is a travertine barrier of about 700 metres in length and only ten metres in width, separates Krka from the mouth of the Čikola. Thus, one sees the exact place where for thousands of years, the Čikola, after travelling through a narrow canyon, spreads wide, rushing into Krka's arms.

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The confluence of the river Čikola and the river Krka / Photo: Romulić and Stojčić

Excursion boats sail right around the Kaličko sod, transporting visitors to the island of Visovac along the lake-like course of the river. In the centre of the fairytale confluence of the two rivers is Torak, a spring in the shape of a lake. Although it is a spring, it looks more like a lake due to its round shape, so it's referred to as a lake spring.

The whole area is under the protection of the parish of Konjevrate, over which St John the Baptist watches.

An attraction more than 100 years old

The new boat has one open and one closed deck, with comfortable seats and an air conditioning system. This modern vessel is also equipped for people with disabilities.

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New modern boat / Photo: Krka National Park

"Krka National Park organises boat transport from Skradin to the Skradinski Buk waterfall and excursion boats from Skradinski Buk to Visovac and the Roški slap waterfall. The boats depart from Stinice and Remetić to Visovac, and two excursions also depart from Roški Slap. Visitors especially enjoy boating, so we must provide them with a complete experience of sailing on the river in safe and modern boats," said Nella Slavica, Krka National Park's director.

The first excursion ship that transported Roški Slap visitors to Visovac and Skradinski Buk was launched way back on March the 31st, 1912. After more than a hundred years of operation, this route is still one of the biggest attractions in the entire park and as such is always of great interest to visitors.

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Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Reducing Crowds at Krka National Park: Skradin Port Readies to Welcome Tourist Boats

January 12, 2021 - Through a project that will last five months, the Skradin port will be enhanced by four new piers to accommodate up to eight tourist boats.  

HRTurizam reports that the ancient port of Scardona is today a modern marina for boats arriving across Lake Prokljan and enjoys a reputation as a safe haven. From this summer, it will be enhanced by a well-maintained pier and main water entrance to Skradinski Buk, the most famous and most visited waterfall on the Krka River.

In order to protect and preserve the recognizable and authentic view of Skradin, the most modern construction techniques will be used to build a new pier, fully integrated into the environment. The project is funded by the Public Institution "Krka National Park".

Namely, the pier is being readied for tourist boats in Skradin, and the works will last for five months. Landscaping the port on the maritime domain, managed by the Public Institution "Krka National Park", will begin on January 15, 2021, within which four new piers will be implemented to accommodate up to eight tourist boats. Furthermore, 145 meters of shoreline will be built, which will ensure additional stability of the city waterfront and significantly improve the current conditions of the coast.

It is an important infrastructure project that will reduce the creation of crowds when boarding and disembarking the entrance to NP Krka.

"Constructing the port in Skradin is one of the significant projects for the Public Institution 'Krka National Park' which will reduce the creation of crowds when boarding and disembarking the entrance to Krka. Visitors will be scheduled so that the time spent thus far waiting in line can be used for a quality tour of Skradin," pointed out the director of the Public Institution "Krka National Park" Nella Slavica.

In addition to the possibility of buying park tickets online, visitors will be able to book a departure date from Skradin and return from Skradinski Buk, adds Slavica, and emphasizes that this will increase the quality of service and customer satisfaction and thus directly affect the time spent in Skradin and Šibenik-Knin County.

For the latest travel info, bookmark our main travel info article, which is updated daily

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Thursday, 3 December 2020

Spellbinding Waltz of Dancing Springtail: New Species Discovered in Krka

December 3, 2020 – New species, the Dancing Springtail has been videoed performing the fascinating and unique dance from which it takes its name. This recent discovery is so far absolutely unique to one quiet corner of Croatia's Krka National Park

It takes all sorts to make the world. In modern-day America, this is more usually said 'It takes all kinds to make the world go round'. But, this famous saying is older than the United States of America. It comes from the Spanish novel, Don Quixote, published in 1605 and written by Miguel de Cervantes - 'de todos ha de haber en el mundo' (literally, 'there must be of all [types] in the world'). Nowhere is this historic phrase more applicable than in biodiversity.

Bugs are often not the prettiest of creatures. We really don't like it when they come into our homes. But, as TCN learned in our recent article on Stinky Martin aka Smrdljivi Martin, every indigenous species has a role to play in our ecosystems. No matter how unsightly, every bug has its rightful place.

The Dancing Springtail, discovered living in a micro-section of Krka National Park, is not beautiful like a butterfly. Its silver body displays no bold colours capable of catching the eye. But, it does have its own mesmerising dance. And, so far, it is absolutely unique, not only to Croatia but to one tiny corner of Krka National Park.

Observed and recorded in video two years ago, the Dancing Springtail has now been classified and given its own name - Lepidocyrtus chorus, the second word pertaining to the curious waltz the Dancing Springtail is seen to do. Thought to relate to its feeding, diet and possibly digestion, the Dancing Springtail makes a circular movement with its abdomen, while keeping its head in one position. It rotates in both directions. This dancing movement is unique to this Croatian sub-species.

Video of the peculiar dance which gives the Dancing Springtail its name. The movement is thought to relate to its feeding, diet and possibly digestion

The Dancing Springtail was spotted and specimens collected from the old stone steps in the area of HPP Miljacka in Krka National Park. The stairs are usually damp, partially covered by overhead trees and overgrown with lichen and moss. This particular area of the Krka river canyon, around the Miljacka waterfall, is of exceptional importance to Krka National Park, due to the mix of caves and water features which occur there and the biodiversity within the area. For these reasons, this area is off-limits to the public. The Dancing Springtail has, so far, been seen nowhere else in the world.

The body length of the Dancing Springtail, minus the head, is 1.7 mm. The top of the body is covered with silver scales, but upon closer inspection, it has dark purple spots on the sides of its fourth abdominal ring. On its head, between the antennae, there is a purple-colored patch, roughly in the shape of a triangle.

AnyConv.com__stepskrka.jpgThe steps near the Miljacka waterfall where the Dancing Springtail was discovered © Krka National Park

The Dancing Springtail is a sub-species of a wider family of hexapods known as Springtails or Collembola (Skokuni, in Croatian). These bugs are no longer classed as insects, because their mouths are internal, rather than exposed. There are about 3,600 different species of Springtails. They have been observed to feed on leaf litter, fungal hyphae, spores, pollen, animal remains, colloidal materials, minerals and bacteria. In doing so, they assist the decomposition process of natural areas. They are reputed to be one of the most abundant of all macroscopic animals, with estimates of 100,000 springtails living in every square metre of ground. Anywhere there is soil, you can dig and surely find them.

AnyConv.com__dancerspringbug.jpgDancing Springtail © Krka National Park

Springtails get their name from an appendage they have on their abdomen which is held under constant tension. When released, the appendage allows them to fling themselves high through the air in as little as 18 milliseconds. They use this jump as a defensive mechanism and in order to migrate to fresh feeding grounds. The appendage makes springtails one of the best jumpers on the planet.

Springtails possess the ability to reduce their body size by as much as 30% in response to rising temperatures in their environment. Warmer conditions increase their metabolic rates and so the decreasing of their size helps them survive. Springtails are good bio-indicators of soil quality and are currently used in laboratory tests for the early detection of soil pollution. Rumours persist that the United States investigated weaponising springtails for use in biological warfare, indeed that they were used for such a purpose in the Korean War. No widely-accepted proof of this usage exists.

Via the study of fossils, we know that springtails have been on the planet for at least 400 million years. If the Dancing Springtail of Krka National Park has been around for that long, its unique movement is probably the longest-running dance in the world.

Wednesday, 22 July 2020

VIDEO: See The Wild Birds Of Krka National Park And A UNESCO World Heritage Site In Šibenik

July 22, 2020 – VIDEO: See The Wild Birds Of Krka National Park And A UNESCO World Heritage Site In Šibenik

Known for its series of cascading waterfalls, its picturesque pools and its acres of lush vegetation, Krka, just outside Šibenik, is one of Croatia's most-loved National Parks. But, scoring the skyline overhead and resting in its trees you can spot one of its other best attractions; the wild birds of Krka National Park.

The National Park has released a new video showcasing just some of the 229 species of birds that call Krka home. Now, you don't have to strain your eyes to see some of its wondrous winged inhabitants. Also visible in the film is the park's Visovac island and its postcard-pretty monastery.


The wild birds of Krka National Park

The short but stunning video catches kingfishers, ducks, buzzards, kestrels, cormorants, swallows and others, in flight or at play on the water's surface. But, should you choose to visit Krka National Park, there's the chance of seeing even rarer birds that sometimes live there, such as ospreys, eagles, falcon and griffon vulture.

Situated just a few kilometres from well-known seaside destination Šibenik, in summertime Krka becomes one of the most popularly visited National Parks in the country. Visitors who can't spend their entire vacation on the beach love to make the short journey inland for a day of stunning natural beauty, shaded on the pathways as they walk by trees like umbrellas.

fortress-3643226_1920.jpgThe Fortress of St. Nicholas, just off Šibenik, the best-preserved Venetian defensive structure in Croatia and a UNESCO World Heritage Site © Sebastian Gößl

And, there's never been a better time to take in the park. Visitor numbers to the region are understandably down on 2019 and so Krka National Park this year offers a more peaceful and unhurried experience than in many previous seasons. If that wasn't incentive enough, tickets for the park in summer 2020 hold a 10% discount to entry of the Fortress of St. Nicholas in Šibenik, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The best-preserved Venetian defensive structure in Croatia, the fortress has undergone considerable reconstruction work over recent years and only opened itself up to the public again in 2019.

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