Zakopane is a town with the population of about 30.000 in the southern part of the Podhale region at the foot of the Tatra Mountains.
Zakopane has an elevation of 830 m above the sea level.

It is the winter capital of Poland and a popular destination for sports such as cross-country skiing, Alpine skiing, skitouring, ski jumping, mountaineering, mountain climbing, mountain cycling and other. There is a number of ski schools, climbing schools, etc., and numerous stores offering sportswear and equipment necessary to practice all types of mountain sports.
Zakopane hosted many sports and cultural events such as ski jumping world cup, (I), Jazz Spring (V), International festival of Highland Folklore (VIII), International Chamber Music Festival Music on the Heights (IX), Mountain Film Festival (IX).

For more than 100 years Zakopane has boasted an opinion of a unique and unforgettable place. It is due to folklore that is still alive and the activity of various artists and other notable residents who used here for an unbroken period of 100 years inspired by the mountains and the Highlander culture. Walking through Zakopane one may find many spots worth remembering, connected with the residence of eminent writers, musicians, painters, etc.
The town’s centre is the famous Krupówki pedestrian mall with the length of 1110m. This is where the oldest hotels, cafes and restaurants are situated.

The Tatra Mountains

The Tatras are a paradise for the lovers of mountain hiking. Picturesque and extremely diversified landscape as well as a wide variety of trails of various degree of difficulty make every tourist desire to hike through the Tatras, the only Alpine-like Polish mountain range. The characteristic feature of the Tatra landscape are high peaks, mountain lakes and caves. Only in the Polish Tatras there are as many as 500 caves, with only a few open for visiting.

The necessity to protect the Tatra area has already been raised at the end of the 19th century. The Tatra National Park, however, was established only in the mid of the 20th century. The Tatra National Park is one of the largest national parks in Poland with the area of above 21,000 ha. The most famous and recognizable places in the the Tatra National Park are:

  • Morskie Oko [Eye of the Sea]
  • Giewont
  • Dolina Kościeliska [Kościeliska Valley]
  • Dolina Chochołowska [Chochołowska Valley]
  • Dolina Pięciu Stawów [Five Ponds’ Valley]
  • Dolina Strążyska [Strążyska Valley]
  • Kasprowy Wierch
  • Orla Perć [Eagle’s Path]

Cycle paths and routes

Podhale is considered a good place for cycling tourism. Beautiful views, picturesque Highlander’s hamlets and villages encourage this form of sports activity. We recommend the following routes:

  1. Mountain route Kościelisko-Chocholowska Valley – 25 km, drive time 3 hrs, difficult;
  2. Mountain route Zakopane-Witów-Dzianisz – 30 km, drive time 4 hrs, difficult;
  3. Mountain route Ząb-Bachledówka-Gubałowka – 35 km, drive time 4 hrs, difficult;
  4. Mountain route Biały Dunajec-Stołowe – 25 km, drive time 3 hrs, difficult;
  5. Cycle route Bialy Dunajec-Bukowina Tatrzańska – 20km, drive time 2,5 hrs, difficult;
  6. Mountain route Białka-Droga Królewska-Czarna Góra – 30 km, drive time 3,5 hrs, difficult;
  7. Mountain route Małe Ciche-Tarasówka – 16km, drive time 2 hrs, difficult;
  8. Mountain route Bukowina Tatrzańska-Czarna Góra-Leśnica-40 km, drive time 4 hrs, difficult;
  9. Downhill route at Harenda
  10. Cycling tourism on the area of the Tatra National Park; note: while cycling within the borders of the Tatra National Park follow only designated paths or roads.

Thermas at Podhale

After an exhausting day in the mountains one may choose to relax at one of Podhale thermal baths or at Aquapark in Zakopane.

  • Bukowina thermas in Bukowina Tatrzańska
  • Thermas in Szaflary
  • Bania Thermas (Białka Tatrzańska)
  • Chochołów Thermas
  • Oravice Thermal Springs (Slovakia – border crossing at Chochołów)


Kasprowy Wierch
The only ski station in Poland of Alpine character, accessible by cablecar with the lower station at Kuźnice. From Kasprowy you may follow two major ski trails: down to Gąsienicowa and Goryczkowa; these two trails end in Kuźnice.

Ski center on Kotelnica Białczańska
A great number of ski trails of various degree of difficulty (the longest one of about 1,5 km), outstanding infrastructure, great panoramic view of the Tatras

3 trails of the total length of 950 m. 4-person chairlift, slope declivity 20%, altitude difference of 130m.

4-person chairlift of the length of approx. 1000m. Medium degree of trail difficulty.

Jurgów and Czarna Góra
Excellent ski downhill trails of medium degree of difficulty, beautiful panorama of the Tatras.