Plitvice Lakes are a national park in Croatia, situated in the Plitvice Lakes municipality, near the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. The lakes are situated on the eponymous Plitvice plateau, between mountains and are renowned for their distinctive colours, ranging from azure to green, grey or blue. The colours change constantly depending on the quantity of minerals or organisms in the water and the angle of sunlight. The lakes are divided into the 12 Upper Lakes and four Lower Lakes. The Plitvice Lakes national park is heavily forested, mainly with beech, spruce, and fir trees, and features a mixture of Alpine and Mediterranean vegetation. It has a notably wide variety of plant communities, due to its range of microclimates, differing soils and varying levels of altitude. The area is also home to an extremely wide variety of animal and bird species. Rare fauna such as the European brown bear, wolf, eagle, owl, lynx, wild cat and capercaillie can be found there, along with many more common species. The Plitvice Lakes had become a major tourist attraction in the late 19th century. The first hotel was built there in 1896 and today is one of Croatia's biggest tourist attractions.
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