Skiing in Zakopane – Poland

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Every year, the plan is: organize a summer trip, because I REALLY NEED a real summer, and a winter trip, usually in January, to celebrate my birthday!

I always wanted to learn how to ski and always had in mind to go to Switzerland, but the prices…To expensive! But, in 2012 my friend had a brilliant idea to plan a trip to Poland, and just on my birthday we were landing in polish lands, 5 girls, no skiing skills, loads of wool clothes and love for the polish beer!!

I didn’t really know what to expect once in Zakopane, but it was a lovely experience, nice atmosphere, friendly people and really cheap food and beer! All that a girls trip wanted!

Zakopane has a spectacular location, just 2 hours drive from Krakow, and a beautiful scenery. We arrived late night at the Krakow Airport and had a car waiting to take us straight to our hostel in Zakopane. It took bit more than 2 hours, because of the snow and traffic, as we travelled during the weekend. Everything was booked with our hostel, from the airport transfer to the skiing equipment and clothes. It could not be easier! We stayed at Good Bye Lenin Hostel, bit far from city centre, but just with the most amazing views from the mountains and close enough to the ski slopes.

Waking up everyday with those huge windows facing the white mountains and pine trees, see yourself inside a traditional wooden house, go downstairs still in your PJs for breakfast, was like having a second home in Poland. Very cosy, comfortable, yet clean and well organized was the Good Bye Lenin Hostel.

A guy from our hostel was our ski instructor for a day, and I am sure that was the worse day of his life trying to teach 4 Brazilians (Joice didn’t attend the class, smart move! She saved her body from muscle pain!) how to ski. And of course, for us was fun, so much fun, but hard. While having our class, we felt embarrassed to keep falling every 2 meters and taking 5 minutes to get up each time! Sometimes I would just stop and watch those kids doing it, as they were born with skis on their feet already! They were just amazing and cute!

The Tatra or Tatry Mountains were amazingly beautiful and breathtaking, specially for us who never saw so much snow in our lives! Unforgettable! I couldn’t stop taking pictures everywhere we went over the weekend, landscape was amazing!

Zakopane is a good and cheap alternative for who is looking for a ski holidays or just spend some time by the mountains, doesn’t matter if is winter or summer. During both seasons, the city has loads to offer! Take a day to walk around the street market at Krupówki street, the main pedestrian zone of Zakopane, full of shops and restaurants. Try as many pierogis as you can! And eat the melted cheese that they sell in small wooden houses at the same street. Oh God, that cheese with cranberry sauce was one of the most delicious things I’ve ever tried!!

Photos: Cintia Tanno

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