Tag: Bieszczady National Park

Tag: Bieszczady National Park

Subcarpathia (Podkarpackie)

Subcarpathia (Podkarpackie) is located in the south-eastern corner of Poland and has the city of Rzeszów as its administrative capital. The region is one of the greenest provinces in Poland with nearly 36% of the area being protected. The protected elements are mostly woodland including remnants of ancient primeval forest.

Within Subcarpathia, there are two National Parks (all of Bieszczady National Park, and parts of Magura National Park) and eleven Landscape Parks.

Whilst exploring the region, you’ll find hundreds of kilometres of tourist trails. The area is extremely popular with hikers who come to the province to enjoy the scenery and fauna; which includes lynxes, wildcats, wisents and golden eagles to name a few.

There are over 1,750 kilometres of cycling routes with varied levels of difficulty in Subcarpathia. Experienced cyclists are attracted by the routes in the Bieszczady, Low Beskid and Slonne Mountains. The Green Velo Eastern Cycling Trail is popular with beginners and families with children.

There are many tourist attractions in the province including historic and heritage sites. The Wooden Architecture Route comprises 9 trails and has a total length of 1202 km. It leads to 127 landmarks of wooden architecture, such as churches, tserkvas, open-air expositions, complexes of small-town buildings, manor houses and palaces. Of particular notice are the jewels of wooden architecture recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites.

Lovers of castles and palaces will not be disappointed, the region has many including Lancut Castle and the fairy tale Krasiczyn Castle.

Krasiczyn Castle is more of a palace come stately home than a castle and is beautifully photogenic, the kind of place where young girls dream of marrying their Prince Charming. Whitewashed walls, turrets and an arcaded courtyard all help to give Krasiczyn that Cinderella feeling, cue the scene with the glass slipper but lets leave out the ugly sisters!

No trip to Subcarpathia is complete without a visit to Krosno, known as, “The City of Glass”. Check out the Glass Heritage Centre. In the past each and every Polish household had some glassware from Krosna in their home.

Bieszczady National Park

Bieszczady National Park is located in south eastern Poland within the Subcarpathian Voivodeship and it is the third largest national park in the country at just over 292 square kilometres. The park became part of the UNESCO East Carpathian Biosphere Reserve in 1992, an area which includes land in both Slovakia and Ukraine.

By far, the largest element of Bieszczady National Park is natural forest (mostly beech) and animal life is abundant there; including many endangered species such as brown bears and grey wolves. You may also see European bison, moose, deer, wildcat, beavers, European otter and lynx.

The park attracts bird watchers from all over Europe and is home to many rare and endangered species of birds of prey including Golden Eagles, Lesser Spotted Eagles, Honey Buzzards and owls.

Don’t be surprised if you see snakes in the park because the largest population of Aesculapian snakes in Poland have made Bieszczady National Park their home. The Aesculapian is nonvenomous but can grow up to 2 metres in length. You may also see adders and grass snakes.

In addition to the wildlife already mentioned, there is also a large population of amphibians living in the park such as frogs, toads, fire salamander and newt.

One of the main reasons why there is such an abundance of wildlife in the park is the way that visitors are managed with an emphasis on all activities not adversely affecting the natural inhabitants that live there. Around 70% of the park is regarded as strict preserve, which means that the use of trails is restricted.

The park is visited by around 400,000 people each year. Despite restrictions, there are still 129 km of hiking trails & 124 km of nature paths to explore. There are also areas put aside for horse riding, cross-country skiing and cycling.

Woodless, grass-covered ridges, called połoniny, are a distinctive feature of the mountains in Bieszczady National Park.

Bieszczady National Park also conducts environmental education in the form of talks, lectures, training courses, seminars and workshops.