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 region is home to the breath-taking Bieszczady Mountains, which offer endless opportunities for hiking, skiing, and exploring the great outdoors. The San River also runs through the region, providing opportunities for rafting and fishing.
National & Landscape Parks
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 hikerswho 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 cyclingroutes 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.
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.
The City of Glass
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 – updated 10 January 2023.
The Park is located in south eastern Poland within the Subcarpathian Voivodeship and it is the third largest national park in the country. The park became part of the UNESCO East Carpathian Biosphere Reserve in 1992, an area which includes land in both Slovakia and Ukraine.
The park is known for its diverse landscapes, which include forests, meadows, rivers, and streams. The park also contains a number of peaks, the highest being Tarnica (1346m) which offers the hiking opportunities and a panoramic view of the surroundings. The park is home to a variety of wildlife, including European bison, bears, wolves, wildcats, deer, and many species of birds.
The park also contains several historic wooden churches, which were built by the Lemko people, an ethnic group indigenous to the region.
Haven for birdwatchers
It was established in 1973 to preserve the natural beauty and biodiversity of the region, including its forests, meadows, rivers, and wildlife. The park covers an area of approximately 107 square kilometers (41 square miles) and is home to a variety of wildlife, including lynx, wolves, bears, and bison. It is also a haven for birdwatchers, with over 200 species of birds recorded in the park. 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.
The park has a network of hiking trails and some trails are also suitable for cycling, horseback riding and skiing. There are also several shelters and mountain huts available for visitors to stay overnight. The park also offers many opportunities for eco-tourism, including bird watching and nature photography.
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.
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.
129 km of hiking trails
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.
Bieszczady National Park is a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and those interested in wildlife, history, and traditional culture. It is open all year round, but some facilities may be closed during the winter months.
What is the Bieszczady National Park in Poland? The Park is a protected area located in the Bieszczady Mountains in south-eastern Poland. It was established in 1973 to preserve the natural beauty and biodiversity of the region, including its forests, meadows, rivers, and wildlife.
What can visitors do in the National Park? There are many activities available for visitors to the National Park, including hiking, biking, horseback riding, and birdwatching. The park also has several educational trails and nature reserves that visitors can explore.
What wildlife can be found in the Bieszczady National Park? The Park is home to a variety of wildlife, including lynx, wolves, bears, and bison. It is also a haven for birdwatchers, with over 200 species of birds recorded in the park.
Are there any accommodation options within the Park? Yes, there are several accommodation options within the National Park, including campsites, hostels, and holiday homes. There are also several hotels and guesthouses located in the surrounding area.