Poland – your best winter destination
Discover the wintertime charms of Poland’s tourist must-sees
You need to fully explore winter to appreciate its unique character and reveal its magic and mysteries. Poland boasts a wide range of exceptional places, whose beauty is especially prominent in winter.
The Bieszczady Mountains are among Poland’s most mysterious and charming mountain ranges. While they are breathtaking in all four seasons, winter in particular brings out their fairytale-like character, with mountain ridges and beech forests covered by a white blanket of snow. The region is a perfect match for all enthusiasts of snowshoes and cross-country skiing. In addition, its secluded mountain trails guarantee peace and tranquillity combined with views of majestic peaks and exquisite panoramas.
Similar highlights are available in other Polish mountain ranges: Beskid, the Tatras, Pieniny and Sudety.
And while we are on the topic of mountains, the remarkable offer aimed at all fans of snow sports deserves a special mention. No matter if you prefer skiing or snowboarding, there’s a great variety of options – Zieleniec, Białka Tatrzańska, Szczyrk, Karpacz and Bukowina Tatrzańska are only some of the best-known resorts that are sure to amaze you with their first-rate trails and hospitable residents.
What better way to follow all the hiking and ski slope fun than to explore the region’s traditional, cultural attractions? Horse-drawn sleigh rides arranged by highlanders offer traditional sleighs, loud singing, torches illuminating the surroundings and warm blankets protecting from the cold. Let us also not forget about local restaurants serving authentic cuisine that will satisfy even the hungriest guests and the most sophisticated palates. A genuine treat when it is freezing cold, thermal baths are a great combination of leisure, health benefits and magnificent views of snow-covered peaks admired from a hot and steamy pool.
Exceptionally picturesque in winter, Białowieska Forest is Europe’s oldest primeval forest whose history and natural character make it an absolute must-see distinguished by one-of-a-kind vegetation, with oldest trees boasting lifespan of more than 130 years. During winters, its epic scenery becomes engulfed in snow and the views can only be described as awe-inspiring. This season also makes it relatively easier to track the king of the Białowieska Forest – the elusive European bison – or even entire herds. Male and female roe deer, wolf and lynx tracks are also easier to spot in deep snow.
Once you are done wandering the wilderness, why not enjoy a genuine Podlasie-style sleigh ride complete with hot tea with a healthy dose of alcohol, a sauna bath and a bonfire? Be sure to try out local cuisine renowned for its delicious game dishes: venison stroganoff, wild boar loin with forest mushrooms or bison pierogi.
Now for a quick trip from the Podlasie region to the Polish seaside, where winter transforms golden beaches into smooth white tracts, which have to be seen to be believed. If you are really lucky and visit when the winter chill sets in, you might even admire waves of ice floes crashing against ice formations along the coast.
Importantly, winter beach walks provide a massive boost to your mental and physical wellbeing. Cold air and sea breeze strengthen your immunity, high iodine levels guarantee resistance to diseases, and the omnipresent silence offers ideal relaxation conditions and puts your mind at ease. Last but not least, at this time of the year the Baltic coastline boasts excellent conditions for cross-country skiing and Nordic walking.
As for the food, many believe that wintertime fishing offers the freshest and highest quality catch, which you can then savour in one of the numerous seaside restaurants. So what would you say about a trip to Poland?