The Gorski Kotar is a mountainous region that lies between Rijeka and Zagreb, along the northern coast of Kvarner.
It is called The green heart of Croatia. It covers 1.273 square kilometers and counts 31.000 inhabitants.
The average altitude of the mountains is 700-900 meters, some exceeding 1.500 meters.
Its mountain climate is characterized by long cold winters and short cool summers.
Gorski Kotar is a region that is not well known outside of Croatia, and yet it is definetely worth seeing.
If you love nature, mountain landscapes with lakes and rivers that run between pine forests, then Gorski Kotar is made for you!
Even if you come to Croatia to spend holidays by the sea, enjoy the pure and transparent water and discover the islands, the Gorski Kotar may be a good idea to take a break. At only 30 mn from Istria and the sea, and 1 hour from Zagreb or 2 hours from the national park Plitvice, it is the ideal location to discover the essential places.
Delnice is the central town of Gorski Kotar. There is a tourist office there that will provide you more information on tours to do in the area. Particularly on the sports that can be practiced such as mountaineering, hiking, cycling, horseback riding, canoeing, rafting, paragliding, hunting and fishing and of course skiing in the winter.
To be in direct contact with the nature and enjoy the beautiful landscapes that offer all kinds of activities is really the main interest to go to Gorski Kotar.
We can not speak about the nature of Gorski Kotar without mentioning the Risnjak National Park, which is one of the eight national parks in Croatia. It is the natural habitat of three large European carnivores: bears, wolves and lynx. I suggest to all lovers of nature to visit Gorski Kotar, its beautiful mountain scenery with its rivers, lakes and forests. Its clean air, hospitality and charm of its people, the peace and quietness will make you fall in love with this amazing region.
Regarding the towns od Gorski Kotar, I can not say that I was really impressed. Except perhaps for Fužine which I believe offers more charm than other towns. Therefore I would definetely advise you to devote your time to the discovery of nature rather than ‘city trips’.
National parks in Gorski Kotar
Accommodation in Gorski Kotar
So where is the best place to stay?
I had the opportunity, and I would even say the chance, to stay in the beautiful wooden chalet ‘Japodi’ of Jagoda and Robert, two Croatian who found happiness in the small village of Mrkopalj after traveling the world. They live in this cottage in the middle of nature and have built there 6 rooms where they will welcome you as friends. You can appreciate the serenity that reigns there, and in the evening be sure to return in time for dinner and enjoy some of the specialties they will prepare for you.
The Japodi cottage is also conveniently located just 10 minutes from the motorway, 20 minutes from Delnice and 30 minutes from Rijeka. Zagreb and the national park Plitvice are located at about 2 hours drive and make it the ideal place for visiting the region.