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The Kornati National Park - a nautical and ecological paradise in Dalmatia

The Kornati National Park - a nautical and ecological paradise in Dalmatia

Explore & take in the plethora of this unspoiled natural maze

Dalmatia is a region that has so much to offer, especially on protected natural habitats. You can find several national and nature parks here, all magnificent and unique. I am focusing on the National park Kornati in this text - which is definitely worth a visit, and it is particularly convenient if you are staying in one of our holiday villas with pool in Dalmatia.

The Kornati islands are an archipelago of 4 island groups (Upper and Lower Kornati), located in Central Dalmatia, south of the city of Zadar and west of the city of Sibenik. The island group consists of around 150 islets, on a territory of some 320 km2.The Kornati Islands are the most indented island group in the Mediterranean.

The larger part of the Kornati island group was proclaimed a national park in 1980. The Kornati National Park covers an area of 218 sq km and includes a total of 89 islands, islets and rocks. Only 1/4 of the park is land, and the rest is a marine ecosystem. Even though it may look as a "moon landscape" to some observers, there is a wide variety of things to explore at the Kornati National Park. It has natural and cultural significance.

The area of the Kornati National Park can be characterised as an area rich in extremely important sub-marine communities which, due to long-term protection, are at a high level of conservation. This type of coastline is to be found nowhere else in the Adriatic. It is a steep sloping coastline to the open sea. This special configuration in the local speech of the island is called crown. The crowns were created with a tectonic defect, in which the part of the island fell and vanished under the sea. The vertical cliffs of the "crown" of the Kornati islands facing the open sea are the most popular phenomenon of this park.

a green-deckedcliff rises up out of the sea in front of a hilly landscape

The Kornati crowns are not only interesting for their appearing beauty, but also because of their special forms of life on them. At the alpine part of the crown live special, rare species of organisms adapted to extreme conditions of life - strong strikes of sea and wind, high concentration of salt, washings, lack of soil and water and strong sunlight. The Kornati underwater is extremely clear and transparent because the light penetrates deeply, creating a specific habitat for fish and various types of very beautiful corals.

What to do and see at NP Kornati:

Sailing through the archipelago - This national park is a true seaside maze for all sailing enthusiasts and a perfect place to enjoy untouched nature. Daily tours of the Kornati National Park are organised by ship owners and operators registered for the transport of passengers by boat and who have a contract with the Kornati National Park for such activities in the Park. During the high season (July, August) the boats mostly sail the tours every day. In preseason and postseason (May, June, September, October) the tours are mostly organised for groups that can be joined by individual tourists.

Diving and snorkelling - A diving tour of NP "Kornati" is only allowed for organized and approved diving groups. Therefore, if you plan to dive within NP "Kornati", contact one of the diving centers authorized to perform this activity at NP "Kornati". The person or the agency must have a contract with the Kornati National Park to organise and guide diving groups. Except in strict protection zones, swimming is allowed in the whole area of NP Kornati. Fishing is not allowed.

: a few bare-branched hilly islands decreasing into the sea and out of the blue

Hiking (viewpoints and lookouts will offer unforgettable moments). In the area of NP Kornati there are 8 well-designed and marked mountain trails leading to the gazebo, from which it is possible to see the Kornati in its entirety or some of its most beautiful parts. These paths are under the common name - Planinarski put Kornati (Mountain route Kornati. There are hospitality facilities and information points in the park. The entire national area of NP Kornati is privately owned. Visitors are allowed to hike only on paths and trails specially marked for this purpose. The Kornati Drywall is one of the trademarks of this aquatorium.

Lookouts – Each lookout point (Kornati peak) is different and unique. Metrina on the island of Kornati is the highest and most impressive peak in the NP "Kornati" (237 m), but it is hardest to reach. Vrata Opata (on the southern part of the island of Kornati), as well as Lika peak on Velika Smokica, offers a beautiful view of the Murter more towards the northeast and to the part of NP "Kornati" on the other. Otocevac on the island of Pisker allows for a glimpse of almost the whole area of NP "Kornati". At the top of Levrnake is easy to come, and very worthwhile to enjoy.

The Church of Our Lady of Tarac (Gospa od Tarca) a humble one-nave sacral building (a typical rural late Romanesque church), built in the place of the early Christian basilica, most probably with the stones of the older church. The Fort of Tureta on the island of Kornat (Late Antiquity to Early Middle Ages – possibly from the 6th century). It is assumed that the fort had military purpose, to secure and control the shipping on then quite unsafe Adriatic.

While you are enjoying your time in one of our wonderful villas with pool in Dalmatia, indulge yourself with a fish picnic on an excursion to a place where nature is at its` best - the Kornati National Park.

Natalie Sipak

+385 1 222 70 50