With its surface area of 96 km2, from the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea to the highest peaks of the Velebit Mountains, Vaganski Vrh (1757 m) and Sveto Brdo (1753 m), Paklenica abounds with numerous natural wonders and phenomena, which is why the entire area was proclaimed a National park in 1949.
And rightfully so, as this region is simple and unusual in its connection between the sea and the mountains, rich in beech and black pine forests, its deep canyons cut vertically into the Velebit ridge, its karst formations and numerous caves and pits. The most attractive part of National park are the canyons of Velika (Big) and Mala (Small) Paklenica. After the Ice Age the decomposition of the rocks was stronger, but in limestons there still wasnt developed the system of underground cracks, and there was no forests which would be able to slowdown and ease the superficial outflow and erosion. Becouse of the mass of debris the erosive force of the water, the streams were able to break through to the sea and dint two deep canyons. Today there is water only in upper flow.
Closer to the shore, stream racks are getting more in limestones and water is disappearing in numerous cracks of carbonate underground. Most of the National park belongs to the watershed of Velika Paklenica. This canyon is 2,5km long and it is transversal to the course of the mountain. That 400m high rock is also the most popular climbing point in Croatia. To the complete watershed of Mala Paklenica is harder to approach, so it is less visited, that part of the mountain is also called „zone of wilderness“. There are several biger speleological objects in National park, but the most beautiful is Manita peć in lower part of Velika Paklenica.
The entrance in to the cave is also nice lookout. In vicinity of the cave is like the tower high and slim rock Zub or Maniti kuk. Within the National park we can also enjoy in abundance of beautiful waterfalls. The wealth of the park are the forests, which cover 2/3 of its area. Here is located the reservation of black pine trees (Pinus nigra), second in Europe by its largeness. Diversity of habitat has given the shelter to numerous animals. Here is also the home of one of the most threatened european birds, Eurasian griffon (Gyps fulvas).