The Guardian: family-friendly skiing, fairytale charm and log-cabin feasts

(The Guardian) – With great-value, child-friendly skiing in the Tatras plus a short stint in historic Krakow, John Gimlette and family enjoy two holidays in one in Poland

Zakopane_at_night

At the top of the Kasprowy Wierch cable car was a poster about bears. The specimen depicted was fudge-coloured and shaggy, and looked replete, as if he’d just eaten a skier. “And do they?” I asked the liftman.

He thought about it a moment. This part of Poland is famously unhurried, and full of surprises. Over 600km south of the Baltic, this is a land of snowy, Brueghel-esque scenes; sleighs, monasteries, cupolas, huge wooden manor houses – like galleons – and a rolling landscape of whiteness. Then, suddenly, it wells up into a wall of rock, 2,500m high: the Tatras. This is the whiptail of the Alps, as wild and well-wolved as anywhere else.

“No,” said the liftman. “Bears are fine. And, anyway, they sleep now. Come back in spring.”

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