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The Kampinos Forest

Moose in Kampinos National Park Moose in Kampinos National Park

Kampinos Forest: Best Place for Nature and History Lovers

 

Warsaw is the only European capital neighbouring a national park. Half-an-hour car ride from the city centre is enough to transport you to the edge of the primeval Masovia Forest, where Polish kings used to hunt. Today, the Kampinos National Park is the green lungsof Warsaw, a destination of weekend getaways for the lovers of pedestrian and bike tourism, as well as cross-country skiing and horse-riding. Fans of unique landscapes can find beautiful sandy dunes located far away from the sea, and animal buffs can admire elks, wolves and cranes in their natural environment.

 

An Oasis of Peace Near a Teeming City

 

The Kampinos National Park is the second park of this type in Poland with respect to size. It attracts tourists who appreciate active leisure in the bosom of nature. It enjoys the opinion of one of the most beautiful regions in the country, interesting with respect to landscape, nature and history. The sandy dunes which are present here are the best preserved complex of landlocked dunes in Europe and on account of them, the Kampinos National Park was entered in the list of UNESCO network of biosphere reserves in 2000.

 

The Forest is inhabited by several thousands of animal species; apart from elks, which are the symbol of the Kampinos National Park, there are also beavers, lynxes, cranes, and, since recently, also wolves. Flora is unique too; in the area of the Park, 22 strict protection zones were designated, whereas 1,105 trees in the Park and areas around them are monuments of nature.

 

Routes for Bikers and Strollers

 

A dense network of trails, well-marked with colours and described in detail on the website of the Kampinos National Park allows for direct contact with almost primeval nature and offers an opportunity to observe it. In the area of the Kampinos Forest, approx. 360 km of walking tourist trails and 200 km of bike routes were set out. Some of them, especially the ones that are closest to Warsaw, are excellent for a leisurely stroll.

 

Many trails intersect; thanks to this, it is possible to create combinations of routes depending on the tourists needs, time and physical condition. In winter, they are used by cross-country skiers and lovers of horse-back riding.

 

Trees: Witnesses of History

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The forest, located in the vicinity of Warsaw, was a witness to many historical events. During peace, Polish rulers hunted here, e.g. Jan III Sobieski, the winner of the Battle of Vienna, and the last king of Poland, Stanisław August Poniatowski. In 1410, the army of Władysław Jagiełło marched along the edge of the forest towards Grunwald. In the Gothic church in Brochów, parents of Frederic Chopin got married; the famous composer was born in Żelazowa Wola, which is located nearby, and baptised in the same church too.

 

The September Campaign ravaged these areas in 1939 and a few months later, Germans chose the area of the village of Palmiry as the place of mass executions of prisoners from Pawiak and other Warsaw prisons. Graves, cemeteries and memorial sites remind us about these events. Over two thousand Poles murdered during mass executions are commemorated in the Palmiry National Memorial Museum, located a few kilometres to the south-west of the village bearing the same name.

 

In order to see the most interesting places, it is worth planning the route in advance, using the Internet map with a zoom option on the website of the Kampinos National Park. There are parking sites and accommodation places in the vicinity marked in the map, as well as all interesting and important places for tourists: trails designated with colours, monuments of nature, strict nature reserves, hill forts, memorial sites and leisure spots.

Map of the Kampinos National Park: kampinoski-pn.gov.pl/images/zoomify/map1.htm

 

Tourist Infrastructure in the Forest and the neighbourhood

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Eastern parts of the Kampinos Forest, located closest to Warsaw and Łomianki, may be reached via city transport. Transport to other locations requires PKS buses or own cars which may be parked on one of the parking sites. Two of them - in Dąbrowa Leśna and Roztoka - have small catering facilities. In the area of the Park, there are no buffets and stores, so it is necessary to take the picnic lunch along.

 

From spring time to autumn there is a picnic season in the Kampinos National Park; picnics may be organised on 12 leisure clearings. Starting a fire or lighting a barbecue may require approval of the Park director, but tourists also have benches and shaded shelters at their disposals, whereas Jakubów and Lipków clearings also feature playgrounds for children.

 

If you plan an overnight stay, you can find accommodation in the former stationary circus building (Baza Cyrkowa) in Julinek, School Youth Centre in Łubiec and the School for Instructors of the Warsaw Region of ZHP (Szkoła Instruktorów Chorągwi Stołecznej ZHP) in Stara Dąbrowa. In the communes of Czosnów, Kampinos and Leszno in the vicinity of the Forest there are also six agritourism farms.

 

 

PLACES WORTH VISITING:

 dworek chopinowski

Birthplace of Frederick Chopin and Park in Żelazowa Wola: birthplace of Frederick Chopin, nowadays the composers museum. During summer weekends, piano recitals are organised here.

chopin.museum/pl/museum/zelazowa_wola/id/896

 


 

palimiry 35
Palmiry
National Memorial Museum: a memorial site commemorating the victims of mass executions perpetrated by the Germans during WWII in the area of the Kampinos Forest.

palmiry.muzeumwarszawy.pl

 

 

 


 

 

Mini golf 5 julienl
Julinek
Entertainment Park: a gigantic entertainment centre for active leisure lovers. The attractions include Heavenly Circus - one of the largest rope parks in Poland: 138 obstacles on seven routes over one kilometre long in total.

www.julinek.com.pl

 

 


 

 

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Church of St. John the Baptist and St. Roch in Brochów:
Gothic and Renaissance church from the middle of the 16th century, where parents of Frederick Chopin got married and where the composer was baptised.

brochow-parafia.pl/

 

 

 


 

 

granica 13 muzeum kampinoskie
Didactic and Museum Centre in Granica with Kampinos Forest Museum:
an educational facility offering ecology-themed classes and workshops for various age groups.

www.kampinoski-pn.gov.pl/edukacja/odm-w-granicy

 

 

 


 

 

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