I am now looking for 2012 and want to see Plitvice lakes. I have already been to Dubrovnik and Split along with other smaller towns. Question I have is how many days to spend in Zagreb and is renting a car in Crotia easy to do. Plan is to go to Platvice lakes (2 days) and return back to Zagreb and stay a few days.
I spent a full day at Plitvice, sleeping two nights in one of the hotels, and wished I had another day. But I am easily mesmerized by falling water. I went by bus - from Split and to Zagreb.
Question about how many days in Zagreb: admittedly, Zagreb was our least favorite place we visited in Croatia, so I may be a bit biased. But, and this is depending on your interests, of course, I would think two days would be sufficient to check it out. Just make sure one of those days isn't on a Sunday, as you'll find many things closed. Question about renting a car in Croatia: we found renting (and driving) in Croatia to be easy and straightforward. Because we are huge fans of AutoEurope.com's customer service, that is who we reserved our car through. And because they are a consolidator, the actual rental was with National. In fact, we dropped the car off in Zagreb at the end of our trip and the rental counter was in the Westin Hotel's lobby.
We took a pension on the night before and got to the park early. EARLY EARLY EARLY. The park is CRAZY BUSY on any holiday, to the point of pedestrian traffic jams. We went counter-traffic which was good. The park opens early. Do NOT wait for the bus to take you to the top. We walked to the upper lakes, and got on the bus to go down to the lower lakes. My wife is not really mobile, but we easily did the upper lakes first and then boarded the bus to go to the lower lakes. 100 got off the bus, and 10 got on. COUNTER-TRAFFIC. We did the entire park, completely, in 6 hours, including a break for coffee at the top. We were completely satisfied with 6 hours. PLITVICE lakes, BTW