Strong winds can’t even disturb people from using the most magnificent gondola lift in the Tatra Mountains. Slovaks are proud of their large investments and long ski season. And they’d love to see you on their slopes.
Slovakia has many tourist attractions, such as mountains, caves, thermal baths and unique monuments. You can attend to them all year long, but it’s the winter season which attracts a majority of tourists to the Slovakian Tatra Mountains, especially those who ski. Poles are among them as well. - Approximately 150-170 thousand Polish skiers have visited Slovakia over the past two years – said Jan Bosnovic, director of the Polish National Center of Slovakian Tourism.
Approximately 350 km of ski routes (including 220 km equipped in snow cannons), 600 km of cross-country ski routes, approximately 1000 ski lifts and almost a five-month-long ski season. This is the data that Slovaks use to describe the current condition of their ski base.
However, these numbers are not that impressive if we compare them to Austria (approximately 6500 km of ski routes). Nevertheless, Slovakia has done plenty to gain in the eyes of winter tourists. - We have invested a total of 300 million euro in the ski infrastructure, hotels and thermal parks over the past eight years. Our ski lifts used to be equipped in old couches and now they’re the most modern in the world – said Jan Bosnovic.
A new gondola will take you to the top
Jasna-Chopok in the Low Tatras has the most novelties in store for skiers. This place is located 80 km from the border pass in Chyżne. Another attractive place is Tatrzańska Łomnica in the High Tatras, which is 30 km away from the border pass in Łysa Polana.
- The investment in Jasna consumed more than 150 million euro. This money was spent to create a new gondola ski lift, modernize hotels and rebuild the city center – said Bosnovic.
Each one of thirty coaches of the new gondola ski lift in Jasna can fit fifteen people and takes them to 2024 m.a.s.l. in ten-and-a-half minutes. Strong winds are not an obstacle for this modern ski lift. Slovaks say that this is the best and largest ski resort in Slovakia and has 49 km of ski routes. Moreover, Jasna offers perfect conditions for beginners, as well as for advanced skiers and snowboarders.
One pass, many attractions
The best Slovakian ski resorts offer a six-day skipass for 170-190 euro. You can buy this via gopass.sk. The top Alpine regions offer the same pass for 250-400 euro. Moreover, your hotel stay and food is much cheaper in Slovakia than it is in France or in Switzerland. Moreover, it’s more comfortable for Polish skiers to reach the Tatra Mountain than the Alps.
Gopasses not only allow you to use ski lifts, but also give you access to the Tatralandia aquapark. Here, you can relax in swimming pools or in one of twenty-one saunas. Moreover, thanks to Gopasses you have discounts in hotels, restaurants and when renting sports equipment.
Due to the Slovakian regulations, skiers who are less than fifteen years of age must wear helmets. If they don’t obey this regulation, they will pay a fine of 330 euro and will be banned from attending the ski area.
Poles love Slovakia
Poles used to visit Slovakia not only because of their attractions and proximity, but also because of their low prices. However, in winter of 2009… - The amount of Polish tourists decreased by approximately 35%. This was caused by the implementation of the euro – said Bosnovic. However, he added that the situation has improved recently and Poles have returned to the Slovakian slopes.
In 2015, Slovakia was visited by 1.73 million foreign tourists. This result was better than 2014’s result by more than 17%. The majority of visitors were from the Czech Republic (29%), Poland (10%) and Germany (9%).
- Trips to Slovakia have become increasingly attractive due to the zloty’s strengthening. In February 2016, the euro was at the level of 4.45 PLN. Currently, it costs approximately 4.30 PLN. The zloty’s exchange rate against the euro should not change significantly in the forthcoming weeks. This will allow to save money when booking accommodation and purchasing a skipass - said Marcin lipka, Cinkciarz.pl senior analyst. Cinkciarz.pl allows you to safely exchange currency twenty-four hours a day, with profitable exchange rates.
Bus or train?
Drivers should keep in mind that driving on Slovakian motorways costs money. The cheapest toll costs 10 euro and is valid for ten days. However, a one-month toll costs 14 euro. You can also reach Slovakia without a car. You can take a bus to Poprad (the largest city in the region) from Kraków or Zakopane. Tiger Express offers one-way tickets for 22.6 euro.
The most popular tourist locations in the High Tatras are connected by the Tatra Electric Railway. You can also reach particular ski areas by skibus.