The Paklenica Riviera delights in its unbelievable mixture of varied landscapes, which in an instant can change before the eyes of the observer. Rocky shoes adorned with romantic bays suddenly turn into a luxurious pebble beach. The shining blue sea in a moment is exchanged for green forests and mountain peaks. Only a few minutes walk from the center, old villages are still defying time, their stone walls preserving traces of the past… It is located in the far northwestern part of Dalmatia, as a part of the Zadar oriented region. Gently laid out along twenty kilometers of seacoast at the foot of the magnificent Velebit Mountain, the Paklenica Riviera joins mountain and sea, the Mediterranean with an upland climate, tradition with modernity.
Starigrad, the center of the Paklenica Riviera, arose on the foundations of the ancient Roman city of Argyruntum. Today it is a lively tourist center with somewhat more than one thousands inhabitants, who exchanged their traditional manner of life in the foothills of the Velebit for life alongside the sea some half a century ago.
The nearness and the easy access to the mountains, particularly through the attractive Velika Paklenica canyon, means that Starigrad is not merely a pleasant seaside resort, but also a traditional gathering place for hikers and climbers, adventurers and scientists, and all nature lovers who come to enjoy the beauties of Paklenica and the Velebit.
Paklenica is also considered to be among the most famous European climbing centres. The climbing area is settled at very beginning of the canyon Velika Paklenica. The climbing site has over 400 climbing routes of various difficulty levels and lengths and the climbing season in Paklenica lasts from early spring until late autumn.
All the full beauties of Paklenica can be experienced only by hiking, and in recognition of this, over 150 km of hiking paths have been made. The particular attraction of this area is the closeness of the seacoast, which allows you to experience all the charms of the mountain and the sea in one place.
While you are enjoying the crystal clear sea, your glance may come to rest on the magnificent canyons of Velika and Mala Paklenica, deeply cut into the Velebit Mountain above you, and you may not realize that they are responsible for the surprising richness of the natural pebble beaches on the Paklenica Riviera. But even those romantic souls who want hidden, rocky coves will come into their own, as they are abundant in the northwestern part of the Riviera.
Text from www.rivijera-paklenica.hr