Apparently the three hotels are operated by the national parks service. We were not encouraged to considere staying at them as other trip reports suggested that they were over-priced for the services received. True, the Bellevue Hotel was not first class, but what is first class is the experience of staying in the national park overnight. This is a World Heritage site and deservedly so. I don't think that there are an accessible series of tuffa lakes, terraces and waterfall anywhere on earth so accessible and so extensive.The national park is very crowded in the day (we were there in June). However, after 5.00pm, the pathways and viewing spots have just a few people and it was light until after 9.00pm. Again, in the morning, with check-out not required until 12 midday, you could wander the boardwalks and tracks with very few people. The numbers of people rose considerably after 10.00am, but having stayed overnight at the Bellevue, we could get and enjoy the park straight after breakfast.
Other bonuses of staying at the hotel is that you have access to free parking and your second day's admission to the national park is free.
The Bellevue Hotel, like the other hotels in the national park and the park headquarters were occupied as barracks by the Yugoslav army in the Croatian war of independence in the early 1990s. This has taken its toll on the park's infrastructure and I for one was grateful that the natural areas were not awfully damaged in this shocking conflict. Staying overnight, either in the park, or somewhere nearly must help the area get back on it's feet. However, the best reason to stay overnight is that you will have an opportunity to really enjoy the Plitvice Lakes.
Facilities. the rooms were clean and comfortable. The breakfast had a great selection of ample food. The room where we had our evening meal had a series of very large photographs of the Plitvice Lakes, worth eating in the dining room just to enjoy these. The food was also good and we found the experience quite inexpensive.(Bed and breakfast 562 kuna, dinner 55 Kuna, entrance fee to park 220 for two adults.)
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