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IMO if you've visited the Rockies you will be disappointed in the Tatras


Aug 26th, 2003, 06:59 AM
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IMO if you've visited the Rockies you will be disappointed in the Tatras

Before we left for our trip I put out a question about the Tatras. Specifically I was wondering if, having spent a lot of time in the Rockies, we'd be disappointed in the Tatras. We changed our itinerary at the last minute and went there to escape the heat in the lower elevations.

We just returned from a trip to Poland where we spent 2 nights in Zakopane and 3 nights in the Karkonosze mountains. Do not, I repeat, do not visit Zakopane in August. Walking through the streets reminds me of the pictures of the crowded streets in a 3rd world country. We're from Minnesota which has one of the country's biggest state fair's and my husband says he will not need to go to the state fair for at least 30 years because he has had 30 years worth of people in Zakopane. We did some hiking in the mountains where we did get away from the crowds, but the trails too were disappointing. Very, very run down and degraded because of all the traffic they get. The mountainous area is so small and there are so many people that the natural environment just can't sustain itself. Some of the scenery was beautiful, but nothing spectacular. All in all, I wouldn't recommend Zakopane or the Tatras. Spend your time in some other more interesting areas. I don't think the issue was just the August crowds; we doubt that we would be impressed at any time of year.

On the other hand, we really enjoyed the Karkonosze mountain area. It had nice scenery, nice hiking, and wasn't as crowded an area as the Tatras. We stayed at Pension Husarz (they have an English web-site and delicious dinners) in Szklarska Poreba which is a smaller manageable resort town. This area would get my vote over the Zakopane area any day.
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Aug 26th, 2003, 08:50 AM
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Thanks for the trip report and as I responded to your earlier original question about whether or not you would BE disappointed by saying that I thought you probably wouldn't think these were "mountains" after having been to places like the Rockies...guess I was right, huh????
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Aug 26th, 2003, 01:40 PM
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Yes, you were right and we had eliminated the area from our list. But, while in Poland we got really sick of the heat and thought to ourselves, How bad can this area be if we are cooler? The answer was bad.
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Aug 27th, 2003, 12:07 AM
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Sorry you didn't like Zakopane. At times it is similar to Door County, WI. Poles vacation in August! Most visit the Baltic coast to avoid the heat. The Slovak side of the Tatras is fun. There are regular local trains moving from site to site. 100s of hotels. Roads are good. My experience in Wyoming..Jackson Hole tourists spent their time in the T shirt booths. We rarely saw travellers at Teton viewing sites. Disney and others have created parks based on tourist wants! Note, Zakopane is becoming a popular site for Poles 2nd homes. Trail conditions depend on funding options. How much will you pay to walk on a private trail?
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