Bialowieza National Park – Updated 23 August 2022
The park is located in the northeast of Poland in the Podlaskie voivodeship and covers an area of around 105 sq km. It is part of the Białowieża Forest, which straddles the border between Belarus and Poland.
UNESCO Heritage Site
Bialowieza National Park is well-known for two reasons. Firstly, it is home to Europe’s largest land mammal, the European bison and secondly, the park shelters a sizeable chunk of original lowland primeval forest, which has remained undisturbed for hundreds of years. The forest has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a Biosphere Reserve.
The park is called the “last untouched wilderness of Europe" and has an inner zone consisting of old-growth forest which has been living without much human intervention for over 800 years.
Białowieża Forest is the last remnant of the primeval forest which once covered most of Europe and several species of fauna, which were once native in forests throughout Europe, but which have now been mostly eradicated can still be found there.
In addition to European bison, the area is also home to wolves, Red Deer, Lynx, Wild Boar, Elk and Roe Deer.
The inner zone of the Białowieża National Park is completely preserved and protected by a fence, with tourists only allowed inside with guides.
Inside, the forest lives, breathes and decays as it has for thousands of years. Outside of the inner sanctuary several more km of forest is semi-preserved although sadly there are many reports of thinning and cutting of trees, supposedly due to disease, but more likely due to corruption and the market demand for large trees.
Nature and Forest Museum
The town of Białowieża is on the edge of the forest and is located in the Polish part of the reserve. Here you will find the Nature and Forest Museum.
This museum features exhibitions relating to the park's flora and fauna, the park’s history, and the archaeology and ethnography of the region. The viewing tower provides terrific views, and just north of the museum you will find a grove of 250-year-old oaks.
The number of bison in the world is estimated at 5,000, half of which live in Central Europe. In Poland, three quarters of the local population of these great mammals live in the wild. You can come across them not only in Bialowieza Forest, but also in the Bieszczady Mountains, in Masuria and in West Pomerania.
Bialowieza Tours (up to 7 people)
What to expect from this tour
Bialowieza National Park is a real phenomenon at a European level. The oldest national park in Poland and one of the oldest in Europe has an extremely diverse variety of flora and fauna. You will find here a whole bunch of plants and animals that occur nowhere else. According to the specialists, Bialowieza Forest is home to 25,000 species of animals and more than 1,000 species of plants.
If you want to experience nature at its best and see how the world untouched by civilization look like, take part in our one-day trip to the Bialowieza National Park. During this tour you will see:
Strictly Protected Area
It’s the heart of Bialowieza and its most precious area which was created by nature itself without any human intervention. It is hard to believe but almost entire Europe was once covered with that kind of primeval forest! During a 3-hour walk through the Strictly Protected Area you will be accompanied by a professional tour guide (it is not possible to explore the reserve without a guide).
European Bison Show reserve
No trip to Bialowieza Forest would be complete without a visit to the European Bison Show Reserve. Despite its name, the reserve is inhabited not only by bison, called also the kings of Bialowieza, but also several other species. Deers, elks, wild boars, wolves, tarpans, Polish horses, lynx, żubron (hybrid of bison and domestic cattle) live in this area in semi-natural conditions.