Krakow / Zakopane – Poland

Kraków, a southern Poland city near the border of the Czech Republic, is known for its well-preserved medieval core and Jewish quarter. Its old town – ringed by Planty Park and remnants of the city’s medieval walls – is centred on the stately, expansive Rynek Glówny (market square). This plaza is the site of the Cloth Hall, a Renaissance-era trading outpost, and St. Mary’s Basilica, a 14th-century Gothic church.

Zakopane is a resort town in southern Poland, at the base of the Tatras Mountains. It’s a popular departure point for winter sports and summertime mountain climbing and hiking. Kasprowy Wierch and Gubałówka, reachable by cable car and funicular, are nearby ski destinations offering sweeping mountain views. The town is also known for its turn-of-the-20th-century wooden chalets, symbols of Zakopane-style architecture.

Chochołowska Glade is a clearing in the Chochołowska Valley in the Western Tatras. It is located at an altitude of 1090–1150 m above sea level. It is the largest clearing in the Polish Tatra Mountains and one of the largest in the entire Tatras. Formerly, it was one of the main centres of pastoralism in the Tatra Mountains, it was part of Hala Chochołowska. It was mowed and grazed, sheep and cattle were grazed here. In 1930 there were 60 buildings of various kinds; huts, sheds, barns with hay. They served not only economic purposes, but were also a base for poachers, smugglers and mountaineers.

Chocholowska Baths are the largest thermal complex in Podhale. The water is extracted from a depth of nearly 3,600 meters and submerged rocks, emit beneficial micronutrients such as sulphur, calcium, magnesium and sodium. After a 6 hour hike we were very much looking forward to the 8 whirlpool pools of thermal water with a temperature of 36 degrees Celsius and taking a dip in the swimming pool brine bath and outdoor swimming pools, all with a temperature of 36 degrees Celsius, it was just too tempting.