The country’s traditional attractions – Warsaw’s lively old town and Kraków’s gorgeous squares – are worthwhile stops, but it’s easy to forget that there is another Poland, a genuine wilderness of high (and often snowbound) peaks, populated by lynx and bears. The Tatras Mountains are as beautiful as any national park in Europe, and their numerous trails – from vertiginous ridge-walks to forested rambles – are enormously popular with the locals, who troop here in their thousands in summer. The hamlet of Kuźnice, just south of the resort of Zakopane, has a cable car that climbs to almost 2000m above sea level (it feels a lot higher); from here, the very heart of the Tatras, marked trails for walkers of all abilities pick their way among the pinnacles.

Zakopane is around 3hr by train or bus from Kraków.

 

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