Just a few kilometres southwest of Poznań’s administrative boundaries is the 76-sq-km Wielkopolska National Park. About 80% of the park is forest – pine and oak being the dominant species – and its postglacial lakes give it a certain charm.
Hiking is the main attraction here, and a good point to start your stroll is the town of Mosina (21km from Poznań), which is served regularly by both train and bus from Poznań.
From Mosina, follow the blue-marked trail heading northwest to Osowa Góra (3km). Once you reach small Lake Kociołek, switch to the red trail, which winds southwestwards. After passing another miniature lake, the trail reaches Lake Góreckie, the most beautiful body of water in the park. The trail then skirts the eastern part of the lake and turns northeast to bring you to the town of Puszczykowo, from where trains and buses can take you back to Poznań. It’s about a 17km walk altogether through the most attractive area of the park.
If you want to do more walking, there are four more trails to choose from. Get a copy of the TopMapa Wielkopolski Park Narodowy map (scale 1:35,000), which has all the details.
The two towns sit conveniently on the eastern edge of the park, just 4km apart on the Poznań–Wrocław railway line. There are regular slow trains from Poznań Główny to Puszczykowo (6zł, 16 minutes, hourly) and Mosina (7zł, 25 minutes, hourly).