This section is dedicated to take away all your "I wish someone had told me that before I went!" experiences. This way, you can spend less time settling in, and more time making new friends in your chosen hostel. We share our insider knowledge of tips, tricks and important things to look out for in Zakopane.
Zakopane is the leading winter resort in Poland. Like any winter resort, the most important thing is snow and winter without enough snow is a disaster for local people and tourists alike. There are enough machines for artificial snow, of course, but they cannot wholly substitute for natural snow.
There are enough hostels in Zakopane, especially in the winter season, when prices rise, particularly at weekends and when there is enough snow. Interesting places like the Gubalowka Hill Funicular and the Kasprowy Wierch cable car are not far from any Zakopane hostel, as the town is small. There are also many old buildings; some of the hostels in Zakopane are in big, old houses, which are more than a hundred years old.
Zakopane has great facilities for winter sports. Zakopane has an Alpine Ski Club, a Nordic Ski Club, a Nordic Combined Club, and a Biathlon Club; the most impressive is the Ski Jumping Club, which is one of the best in Poland. With so many clubs, it is not surprising that tourists have a great choice of winter activities from Alpine and Nordic skiing and speed skating even to ski jumping (although the Large Hill in Zakopane is a challenge even for professionals). Zakopane is often used as a training base by different Polish national teams. There are many foreign professional athletes who also train in Zakopane. There have been also three Nordic World Ski Championships in the resort.
The only transportation that you would need in the town is your feet, your skis, and the ski lift. And if you manage to book a cheap Zakopane hostel, you can save a lot. Zakopane has a nice climate and beautiful nature during the rest of the year and Zakopane hostels are cheaper then, so you will not regret visiting the town in the off-season.
Written by local enthusiast for Zakopane hostelsGeorge Traveller