Zakopane - Morskie Oko

The land that vegetables forgot

Kocham Polskę! (Or, for you non-Polish speakers: “I love Poland!”)  

I have just returned from traveling through Poland for the last 10 days, with a brief stopover in London to visit with friends and colleagues. I spent a few days in Kraków, the cultural capital of Poland, and then the rest of the time in Zakopane, the Southern, mountainous region with is year-round tourist destination for skiing, hiking, and mountaineering.

I loved every second of my trip and I would tell anyone that is able to visit. Why?

  1. It’s healthy. You will walk a lot. Upstairs, downstairs, up mountains, down mountains, through the town…if you are not mobile or not a fan of being mobile, you simply will not enjoy this country.
  2. It’s fun and tasty. The people of Poland are warm and welcoming and if you have an adventurous spirit, you won’t lack for things to do. Go enjoy a pool party in an outdoor heated spa and multi-pool situation. Go dance to disco polo is a random club down the main stretch in Zakopane. Catch a ski lift up the mountain with friends and sip Zubrowska (bison-grass vodka) while eating pierogi at the top.
  3. It’s cheap. The exchange rate was almost 4 złoty to a single US dollar, and even better for the Euro or the British pound.

However, that is not the only reason to go visit. You didn’t think I was just going to leave it there, did you?

I loved Poland because it was simply a breath of fresh air. Both literally and figuratively.

The majority of the time, I failed to:

  • Notice what day of the week it was
  • Check my work email
  • Stay up-to-date on political news
  • Worry, fret, or dwell

We all need to take the foot off the pedal. We love to work, and work is a very fine thing, but it is not the only thing. For me, Poland was the first time in a long time that I had taken that many days away from my regular daily grind and just relaxed, ate well, stayed active while not in the gym, had continuous fun, celebrated with and for my friends, and simply just enjoyed myself.

Visit Poland: enjoy yourself. Or, visit (fill in the blank): enjoy yourself there, too.

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