Krka National Park
Stretching from the western foot of the Dinaric Range into the sea near Šibenik, the 73km Krka River and its wonderful waterfalls define the landscape of Krka National Park. The waterfalls are a karstic phenomenon: over millennia river water has created a canyon up to 200m deep through limestone hills, bringing calcium carbonate with it.
Mljet is one of the most seductive of all the Adriatic islands. Much of the island is covered by forests and the rest is dotted with fields, vineyards and small villages. The northwestern half contains Mljet National Park, where the lush vegetation, pine forests and spectacular saltwater lakes are exceptionally scenic.
Composed of 147 mostly uninhabited islands, islets and reefs covering 69 sq km, the Kornatis are the largest and densest archipelago in the Adriatic. Due to its typically karstic terrain, the islands are riddled with cracks, caves, grottoes and rugged cliffs. Since there are no sources of fresh water they are mostly barren, sometimes with a light covering of grass.
A ferry shuttles roughly hourly in summer (half-hourly in July and August) on the 10-minute trip from Dubrovnik's Old Harbour to lush Lokrum Island (adult/child return 56/16KN). It’s a beautiful, forested place of holm oaks, black ash, pines and olive trees, and an ideal escape from urban Dubrovnik. Swimming is excellent, though the beaches are rocky.
Kopački Rit Nature Park
Only 12km northeast of Osijek, Kopački Rit Nature Park is one of the largest wetlands in Europe: 293 bird species have been recorded here. Formed by the meeting of the Drava and Danube rivers, this vast floodplain has two main lakes, Sakadaško and Kopačevo, surrounded by a remarkable variety of vegetation – from aquatic and grassland flora to willow, poplar and oak forests.