Zakopane is extremely pupular tourist destination in Poland. As it can get very crowded, we decided to stay in the most quiet part we could find – Cyrhla.
It's one of Zakopane districts located on 1000 metres which makes it great starting point for hiking trips. And it's peaceful place - city centre is about 5 kilometres from Cyrhla.
We stayed in Willa Bartek (Bartek’s villa). It was great value for money – the whole house was newly refurbished (2014), rooms were nice and clean, each with bathroom. There was also sauna and, most importantly for us, table football We really liked this place.
On the first day we went for a short walk – red trail leading from Toporowa Cyrhla. We got to Psia Trawka (Dog’s Grass) - 1185 metres and then returned along red and black trail in Dolina Suchej Wody (Dry Water Valley).
In the afternoon we decided to visit aqupark Bukovina in Bukowina Tatrzańska (few kilometres from Zakopane). I really liked the hot geothermal pools, slides and, of course, brilliant views of Tatras visible from the pools. And the entrance fee is rather cheap comparing to other places like this.
On the next day we did a really good piece of hiking – we walked about 30 kilometres! As the day before, we started our trip from Toporowa Cyrhla following red trail. We passed Psia Trawka and headed to Morskie Oko (Sea Eye) – the biggest (and arguably the most beautiful) Tatra lake located on 1395 metres.
At some point of our walk the trail got to asphalt road leading to Morskie Oko.
Since this is very popular place in Tatra mountain there is a lot of people and even chaises pulled by exhausted horses. I do not particularly like this asphalt road - it's not very comfortable for me to hike on 'artificial' paths. I'm all for dirt trails! Besides, there have been cases when a horse died while pulling the carriage because of heat and effort. Here's what I think about this: if someone doesn't like hiking in the moutains, then there are loads of beaches to lie on.
Fortunately, on the way to Morskie Oko there are steep forest shortcuts which make the hike a bit shorter. They're less crowded and more demanding - perfect.
When we got to Morskie Oko lake we'd already been rather tired as our hike lasted over 5 hours. There was no table available in the mountain hut near the lake so we had a quick snack on a rock near the lake and went back using the same trail as we had hiked along before.
The views on Morskie Oko are truly breathtaking but it's not very easy for me to contemplate the nature while being in the middle of a noisy crowd.
The following day was the most interesting one. We left our car at parking space in Palenica Białczańska (984 metres) and started hiking along red trail. When we got to Wodogrzmoty Mickiewicza we took green trail leading to Dolina Pięciu Stawów mountain hut (Five Lakes Valley) on 1672 metres. It's very nice place serving delicious tomato soup The hut is located just over a very beautiful lake. Brilliant view!
If the weather had not been so cold I would have sat there until the end of my life... I really recommend hiking to Five Lakes Valley - it is relatively easy to get to and so beautiful! And the mountain hut there isn't that crowded - no cable car and relatively high altitude make it more adequate place to relax in peace and admire stunning views.
Then we kept hiking along blue trail to Przełęcz Zawrat (2158 metres). It was middle June but it was so cold and windy that, unfortunately, we did not stay there long. It felt like in the middle of Autumn there!
On the last day we had a relatively short and easy walk - we hiked to Przełęcz Nosalowa (Nosal Pass) on 1110 metres.
We started walking from Toporowa Cyrhla along green trail, got to Olczyska Polana (Olczyska Clearing) on 1048 metres, then headed towards Przełęcz Nosalowa along yellow trail. We ended up in Kuźnice - very popular tourist place in Zakopane where a cable car takes tourists high up into the mountains.
Nosal Pass's great destination for families with children - the trails leading there are nice and easy but offer great views!
And you, do you have your favourite mountains which you need to visit every year?