For all trekkers and riders who visit the Paklenica National Park, falling in love is unavoidable. The wild and challenging “call of nature” will simultaneously offer relaxation along with invigoration. Proud and haughty, the tallest and most incredible mountain peaks of Velebit may be found here in Paklenica: Vaganski vrh (Vaganski Heights) (1757 m) and Sveto brdo (Holy Mountain) (1753 m). Both slopes are true alpine treats for (only) the most experienced and rugged of mountain climbers.
But don’t despair - even if you haven’t any mountain climbing experience, Paklenica will richly reward you. The gigantic gorges at Large and Small Paklenica will leave you breathless, providing you with the enjoyment of unspoilt nature and primordial stillness. Paklenica is the home of the red forest pine, from which its resin, called paklini, originates, hence the Park’s name. Along with its forested areas, the flow of clear mountain springs has proven the relentless power of water, carving its signature into the rock within the deep canyons of Paklenica.
The greatest portion of the National Park is very accessible to the public, and geologically belongs to the Large Paklenica basin. The pass at Large Paklenica is completely trackable and reaches a depth of two and a half kilometers. At the upper end, you’ll find the largest perpendicular width on Velebit – Anića kuk. This 400 meter high rocky phenomenon is, in fact, the best known alpine point in all of Croatia. Each year, it converts true believers out of its wide array of mountain climbing enthusiasts from all over the world.
Small Paklenica, like its name suggests, is indeed much smaller because the torrent passing through it was weaker, but don’t assume that it is any less challenging. While Large Paklenica provides a nicely constructed route which you can navigate without any problem, much like an ordinary walking path, Small Paklenica requires expert know-how since you’ll need to “tailor” and plot your steps. You will also require the use of your hands in order to make your way through the thicket, and it’s a very good idea to go in the summertime when the pass is dry.
Paklenica National Park is not far from the sea, offering its visitors the opportunity of enjoying something really remarkable. Surely you will enjoy pondering the hues of the deep blue sea from the towering mountain tops of Paklenica.