Get Back on the Trail by Cycling in Poland

If you are planning a European holiday to get back into the saddle, recent upgrades to the biking infrastructure have made Poland a perfect destination. It’s also the birthplace of Rafal Majka and Maja Wloszczowska, two names synonymous with cycling in Poland. The sport is becoming the number one activity in that country, and it boasts an extensive network of cycling lanes. The scenic town of Zakopane in the foothills of the Tatra Mountains claims over 930 cycle routes and is home to a big race for amateurs that runs parallel to the Tour de Pologne, which, of course, is the biggest cycling race for professionals. 

If you are looking for hilly or downhill-type routes, the historic Zakopane ranks high as a must-go-to destination for bikers. In a notable piece of history, Zakopane was granted the status of a health resort in 1889. It attracted individuals recuperating from tuberculosis, indicating a long history of health-related activities. The town welcomes over three million tourists annually and most people ride there during the months of July and August. The undulating roads in this region of Poland are an irresistible challenge to biking enthusiasts.

Poland attracts thousands of tourists every year and has cycling lanes to meet all tastes, from forest to city and from the river bank to the mountain trail. You can visit Warsaw where cycling in the Kampinos Forest is a delight. Other cities worth taking a cycling trip to are Wroclaw, Opole and the cultural, cosmopolitan city of Krakow, just to name just a few.

Taking a cycling holiday in Poland is a treat. Besides the fitness aspect, the spectacular landscape dotted with medieval towns is a pleasure to behold. It is not unusual to see horse-drawn carts on the tranquil country paths where European wildlife like the wild boar is spotted. Indeed, one of the most scenic cycle rides in Europe is the Dunajec Gorge.

Photo by Jerzy Opioła, CC BY-SA 3.0

It is no surprise that Polish biker Maja Wloszczowska, with access to such an extensive training ground, has so many achievements under her belt, such as the Rio 2016 Olympic silver medal in mountain biking and numerous UCI Mountain Bike accolades. Wloszczowska along with many other adventurers enjoy the Polish mountain slopes and biking parks like the Wierchomla Wielka, Zar Mountain, Palenica Mountain and Czarna Gora. Mountain biking is an ever-expanding sport in the country, which has seen tremendous benefits from growing exposure. In fact, annual competitions are held worldwide in cross-country, enduro and downhill disciplines, with Poland on the itinerary.

Poland has a wealth of unspoiled countryside with tremendous opportunities to try multiple biking disciplines. The choice of bike trails is extensive, and there is no shortage of recommendations as to which ones are the best because each discipline requires a unique mountain bike design, kit and trail type. A rider’s handling skills, endurance, speed and sense of adventure are well tested, and Poland can ably accommodate. There are a variety of routes that can be enjoyed at your pace, whether you are an amateur or a professional.

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