Southern Poland is cut with mountains, at the foot of which there are the largest metropolises in Poland – Cracow and Katowice. On the one hand, this region is a real paradise for enthusiasts of mountain hiking and climbing, and, on the other hand, the industrial heart of Poland. The excellent communications and connections with other parts of the country makes Southern Poland very popular among investors.
Southern Poland: top business and tourist destination
For decades now, the resources hidden under the ground, including, above all, coal, have been fuelling the largest urban agglomeration in Poland, i.e. the Upper Silesian Industrial Region, with Katowice in its heart. According to the prestigious “Global Free Zones of the Year 2015” ranking, the Katowice Special Economic Zone is the best one in Europe and the second best in the world. Simultaneously, the authorities of Katowice care about the quality of the inhabitants’ life and attract tourists by way of the most spectacular investments in culture in Poland. Undoubtedly, the tourist centre of the region is Cracow, the historical capital of Poland, with the Wawel Royal Castle, entered into the UNESCO World Heritage List, being its symbol. Close by there is another world-class monument, i.e. the “Wieliczka” Salt Mine, which in 2015 was visited by over one million tourists from all over the world.
Beautiful mountainous landscapes
However, Southern Poland is associated mainly with the mountains. In summer, enthusiasts of hiking should get to the lake known as Morskie Oko, and to the Five Ponds Valley, and the more courageous ones should climb Rysy (2499 m above sea level), which is the highest mountain in Poland. History enthusiasts, in turn, should find on the map the Owl Mountains, where you can become absorbed in the underground tunnels dug by the Nazis during the Second World War and look for the treasures hidden in them. One of the most mysterious places from this period is the Książ Castle. Totally different impressions can be expected in the Bieszczady Mountains, which are the wildest Polish mountains, covered with dense forests. If you have not forgotten your passport, you can leave the European Union and visit Ukraine.
Ski resorts in Southern Poland
In winter, Southern Poland indulges in a snow frenzy. The most popular ski resorts include Białka Tatrzańska and Zieleniec, but it is Zakopane, the capital of winter sports, that is visited the most often. When going to the mountains, look for accommodation in one of the traditional highlander houses and taste the local delicacies, and, above all, “oscypek”, which is smoked cheese made of sheep milk.