Zakopane, winter capital of Poland
Zakopane, located in southern Poland very close to the Tatra National Park (Tatrzanski Park Narodowy), offers many attractions all year round. In summer it is very popular with hill walkers and mountain climbers and in winter with winter sports enthusiasts.
The Tatra mountain range in Poland has an Alpine character which for many people is often one of the main reasons for visiting Zakopane. Mountain hiking is well organised here as are trips by a cable car, which is highly recommended especially for sightseeing. Even experienced mountain climbers, familiar with the Alps, can be surprised by the view onto the Valley of the Five Lakes (Dolina Pieciu Stawow) in the autumn.
Zakopane is used as a starting or finishing point for hiking expeditions but the town itself also offers a variety of attractions for visitors. The architecture of this region is quite unique. Houses are all constructed from wood with no metal nails used and traditionally every villa has its own name. Many are decorated with rich floral motifs.
Krupowki Street, the most popular pedestrian street, is lined with restaurants and taverns (karczma) where local specialities are served.