With rumbling waterfalls, sheer gorges and dense forests, Slovenský Raj lives up to the name of 'Slovak Paradise'. A few easier trails exist, but the one-way ladder-and-chain ascents make this a national park for the passionately outdoorsy. You cling to metal rungs headed up a precipice while an icy waterfall sprays you from a metre away: pure exhilaration.
The nearest major town is uninspiring Spišská Nová Ves, 23km southeast of Poprad. Of the three trailhead resort villages, pretty Čingov, 5km west of Spišská Nová Ves, is our favourite. Podlesok, outside Hrabušice (16km southwest of Poprad), has good accommodation and a variety of hiking options. About 50km south, Dedinky is more of a regular village with a pub and supermarket fronting a lake.