Swimming in the Krka National Park

Skradinski Buk

Skradinski Buk is the name of the largest and most well-known series of waterfalls along the Krka river. It's actually Europe's largest travertine waterfall (a type of limestone) and consists of a chain of cascades, islands, and lakes.

The pools and nearby river at the base of Skradinski Buk make for perfect place to swim, and swimming has always been allowed there, since Krka became a national park in 1985, and before.

Stopping by for a swim

For many visitors, the chance to swim in Krka National Park at the foot of the famous Skradinski Buk waterfalls has long since been one of the main reasons for their visit to the Krka National Park.

Splashing and bathing in such idyllic surroundings is a unique way of cooling off on a hot summer's day while enjoying the beauty of the national park, and makes for a perfect daytrip for tourists staying nearby on the Adriatic coast near Šibenik.

Did you know Croatia has 8 national parks?

Check out our lowdown on the Croatian national parks, which includes details on each park, where it's located, what makes it special and what you can do when you visit the park, along with some Croatian vocabulary to learn and practice if you're interested in learning the Croatian language.

Woman swimming at Krka national parkWoman swimming at Krka national park

Is swimming still allowed in 2024?

Protecting the national park

Unfortunately, the answer is no :-(

Croatia's national parks receive over 4 million visitors each year, and it's because of this huge number of visitors – and also the predicted effects of climate change on this protected habitat – that park authorities had long been considering restricting, or banning, visitors from swimming within the park limits.

A ban on swimming from 2021

In order to protect the national park, Krka National Park management introduced a ban on swimming from 1 January 2021.

This latest step isn't the first that has been taken to help conserve one of Croatia's great natural beauties, as annual visitor numbers continue to rise. The National Park declared in 2017 that a maximum of 10,000 visitors would be allowed at Skradinski Buk at any given time.

Let's Learn Croatian Insider Tip

Swimming will still be permitted for the local community, but only in certain locations. The park authorities decided to allow this in reflection of centuries-old cohabitation of local residents with the Krka river.

Krka National Park

Where in Croatia is Krka?

National Park is located not far from the Dalmatian city of Šibenik. The park centres around a series of spectacular waterfalls – and active water mills – along the course of the Krka river. It also contains no fewer that five medieval fortresses, the most famous of which is called .

When did Krka become a national park?

Krka was designated as Croatia's eighth national park on January 24, 1985. The park has a total area of 14,200 hectares, about a quarter of which is dedicated to riverland and waterfalls.

Further reading