Małopolska and the Tatras Travel Guide
Plan Your Małopolska and the Tatras Vacation
Just to the south of Kraków, Poland's great plains give way to the gently folding foothills of the Carpathians, building to the High Tatras on the Slovak border. The fine medieval architecture of many towns in the Małopolska (Little Poland) region comes from a period when the area prospered as the intersection of thriving trade routes. In the countryside, wooden homesteads and strip-farmed tracts tell another story: of the hardships and poverty that the peasantry endured before the 20th century brought tourists to the mountains. During the 19th century, when this part of Poland was under Austrian rule as the province of Western Galicia, hundreds of thousands of peasants fled from the grinding toil of farm life to seek their fortune in the United States; it sometimes seems as if every family hereabouts has a cousin in America.
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