Inexperienced hiking route in Zakopane
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Mar 14, 2013 4:11 PM Last Post By: piaczka
Mar 9, 2013 8:05 PM
Inexperienced hiking route in ZakopaneHi all,
Like to visit Zakopane for 2 days at early October, is it a good season to go? Does it rain a lot?
Are there any beautiful hiking routes for inexperienced ppl or any routes with cable cars that open in October, recommend the routes suitable for two days plz! Because I'm with my parents, it's better to do the easy walk and cable cars.
How can I get from Vienna to Zakopane, the most convenient way I find now is Vienna - Bratislava - Poprad - Zakopane, does anyone know any easier ways?
Thank you heaps and heaps!
Mar 10, 2013 12:32 PM
Yes. The crowds are away, yet the weather is usually still good.
Mountain weather is hard to predict. You have a reasonable chance of nice sunny weather in early October, on the other hand rain or even snow is not unlikely.
The most popular route is to the Morskie Oko lake, 2-3 hrs easy walk along a paved road.
There's also a cable car going up to the Kasprowy Wierch summit. From there you can walk along the ridge of the Tatras for some time and descend into the valleys (e.g. down to Hala Gąsienicowa, from where you can take a short easy hike to another beautifully located lake, the Czarny Staw Gąsienicowy).
The route via Poprad is a good route, and also cost-effective: you avoid long distance international trains, which are relatively expensive. The direct buses from Poprad to Zakopane go until the end of October, departures from Poprad bus station 08:50 11:50 16:50 18:50, with the 8:50 and 18:50 buses cancelled in October. http://www.strama.eu
Another option is an overnight train from Vienna to Kraków, then bus to Zakopane (2,5 hrs).
Mar 10, 2013 10:57 PM
Thank you so much for all the infomation!
Have another question, you must have been to Poprad right, any secenry differences between the Slovak side and Poland side?
From lakes, scenery, moutains, easiness of hiking, cable cars, which places is better for early october? do they just look like smiliar that I could just skip one, or it's better to be in Poprad for one day, Zakopane for the second day?
Thank you so much!
Mar 12, 2013 7:43 AM
First of all, Poprad is a rather not attractive, quite industrial town. Its asset are good train and bus connections, including frequent local train to the localities at the foot of the Tatra Mts., like Tatranská Lomnica or Starý Smokovec.
It is hard to decide between the two parts. In the high season, the Slovak part is nicer because of smaller crowds. This doesn't apply in October however. In terms of scenery, the Slovak part has more dramatic peaks, while IMHO the Polish mountain lakes are more beautiful. It's easier to experience the high mountain scenery in Slovakia, because there's a cable car going to the top of Lomnica peak (Lomnický štít, over 2600 m a.s.l.). The lakes are easier accessible on the Polish side.
One more thing to consider is that the Slovak towns/villages at the foot of the Tatras will be quite dead in October. On the contrary Zakopane and surroundings are quite lively even off season, thanks to a sizeable local population and larger amount of tourist traffic on the Polish side.
With 2 days at your disposal I don't think splitting the time between the two areas makes sense, unless you would anyway be travelling from Poprad to Kraków. Then you could consider taking a night train from Bratislava to Poprad, going to the Lomnica peak (weather permitting) and taking the afternoon bus from Tatranská Lomnica to Zakopane (that's the same bus that originates in Poprad).
Mar 14, 2013 4:11 PM
4I agree with igur. We were in Stary Smokowiec (Slovakia) a few years ago and it must have been after a terrible forest fire which devastated the area immediately around the town leaving it looking almost surreal, beautiful but sad.
Also as igur says, it will be a bit bleak in October with noone around whereas the area around Zakopane in Poland will have just enough people around not to make it feel totally isolated, despite it being low season.
As far as the walks are concerned, the ones mentioned by igur are beautiful walks but if your parents are aged they might find them a bit of a challenge, especially as the most beautiful part of the walk near the Morskie Oko lake is once you get up to and past that lake which is already a fair distance.
Another popular destination for older walkers is the Dolina Chocholowska. It is quite a long slog up to the shelter (for great home fare) but very pleasant, especially as you get further up. I think it might be possible to get a ride on a horse and cart and certainly I remember renting a bike to cycle back down and that was great fun.
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