Winner of the 2008/2009

Northern Velebit National Park

The experience of pristine wilderness

The national winner of European Destination of Excellence for 2008/2009 on the theme of ‘Tourism and Protected Regions’ was the Northern Velebit National Park. The aim of the campaign was to award an area of an economically sustainable tourist product developed alongside the help of a protected region but with the economic use of nature and with the attention to the needs of the local authorities and visitors in a way that they are not impoverished in the long-term. The region was declared a national park due to the extraordinary diversity of karst phenomena, the wealth of wildlife and exceptional natural beauty over a relatively small area. All the activities are oriented towards the achievement of the vision of a protected region as an area that is a familiar part of Velebit by the preserved natural diversity and experience of pristine wilderness.


Northern Velebit is the ideal destination for all those who prefer an active holiday and recreation in untouched nature with a feeling of pristine wilderness. Almost every trail leads you to the mountain peaks that are also wonderful vantage points, both of the sea and the islands and Lika. The existing trails and paths are suitable for other activities such as trekking and hiking. In the park and around it there is also a network of partly gravel, partly tarmac roads that can be used for cycling and cycling tours of Velebit. The most attractive locations in the area of the Northern Velebit National Park are Zavižan, the Velebit Botanical Garden, the Premužićeva Staza trail, Štirovača, Alan and Lubenovac.

2008/2009: ‘Tourism and Protected Regions’

2008/2009 Finalists