16 Lakes and One Fairy

16 Lakes and One Fairy

Plitvice Lakes, a natural gem known across the globe, is the most famous and popular Croatian national park and has been included on the UNESCO heritage list since 1979.


It is a place so fascinating that even angels experience true joy here, and regular visitors rub their eyes in disbelief, thinking they’ve stepped into a beautiful fairy tale. You have been warned – Plitvice Lakes will have a “wow” effect on you.

Shrouded in a magical veil of trees, the 16 emerald lakes represent the most beautiful oil painting that nature was able to paint with its invisible brush.

According to folklore, this heaven on earth is the work of a fairy from Velebit Mountain, a mysterious and gentle creature with magical abilities that lived on the equally mysterious Velebit. Although the name “Black Queen” is usually associated with something terrifying and wicked, the Black Queen of the Lika region used her magical powers to create the Croatian tourism gem.

The magic behind Plitvice Lakes

Legend has it that a long time ago, the area of Plitvice was struck by a great natural disaster. A great heat wave lasted for months, rain was only a distant memory in the minds of the elderly, animal and plant life was dying of dehydration, rocks were cracking under the pressure, and the only source of water, the Black River (Crna rijeka), turned to dust.


People looked to the skies helplessly, crying out for help and relief, but the sun continued to scorch the ground mercilessly. There seemed to be no hope in sight, until one day, the Black Queen and her entourage set off from her fairy palace towards Plitvice.


When she saw the powerlessness, grief and suffering of the locals, she decided to help them. A curtain of rain covered the Plitvice area, accompanied by strong winds and loud thunder.

It rained so hard and for so long that the source of the Black River began flowing again towards the 16 lakes with unstoppable force.

The people of the area never forgot about the Black Queen’s good deed. They built her a castle on the hill, above the largest Plitvice lake, Kozjak, where she spent her days enjoying the beauty and harmony of the waterfalls.