During the 5 years since I moved from Mexico City to Warsaw, my parents hadn’t had the opportunity to visit me on the other side of the world. Each year I was waiting patiently for my parents so they would buy their tickets to Poland, but unfortunately it was not that easy as it seems.
My mother wanted to visit me during winter, the main reason is because my family haven’t seen snow yet. This might sound like a good idea but honestly thinking, visiting Poland during winter might be quite challenging for many people especially if you want to go sightseeing. I have experience of already five winter seasons in Poland, and I couldn’t imagine my parents walking around different Polish cities with temperatures of -10 degrees. Maybe during the first hours in Warsaw it would be fun, but after a few days they would be completely exhausted, and they would prefer to spend the day inside watching Netflix.
I convinced them that visiting Poland for the first time during winter was not recommendable, but instead they could come during spring. Poland is a complete different country during the hot seasons, and for me is ten times more beautiful when you can walk around only in a t-shirt. So, last month my parents visited Poland for the first time. Honestly, I couldn’t believe it, only when I saw them at the Warsaw airport I knew it was real!
I wanted to give my parents the best impression of my lovely Poland. I wanted to show them everything so they could fall in love with the country just like me. It was hard to decide what to show them: Maybe the mountains? Maybe the sea? Maybe a few cities? So my girlfriend and I decided to plan everything and the final tour was a mix of everything. What was the result? They loved it!
There was a place that I only knew in pictures or a few videos on the internet, and it looked incredible so I thought that this would be the first place to show my parents, as I had no idea what to expect it would be great that me and my parents would be impressed at the same time. Our first destination on this Polish trip was Morskie Oko – The Eye of the Sea.
What is Morskie Oko?
Morskie Oko is also known as the Eye of The Sea or the Eye of Poland. It is a lake in the Tatra Mountains, and it is the fourth deepest and the largest one in the region. It is a place that is hard to believe that it exists because it is extremely beautiful, you will feel like in heaven when you reach this destination.
Where is Morskie Oko located?
Close to Morskie Oko, there is one of the most iconic and touristic places in Poland – Zakopane. This city is located in the south of the country, almost at the border with Slovakia. Zakopane is the highest situated town in Poland (more than 1,000 meters above the sea), and the town is surrounded by the Tatra Mountains.
Video about Zakopane
In the Tatra Mountains, Morskie Oko is resting and waiting for you. In the Tatra mountains, there are several peaks and valleys, so if you love going hiking this region is highly recommended for you. Morskie Oko is located at the end of the Valley Stream Fish.
How to Get to Morskie Oko From Zakopane?
As I mentioned before, Zakopane is the closest town from Morskie Oko, so it will be really possible that you will be hosted in the city, and you will go to this precious lake on one of your free days.
If you decide to go to Morskie Oko from Zakopane you will have two options: going by car (around 30 minutes), or go by bus/van (less than 3 euros). Either way, you can’t reach Morskie Oko on a vehicle, you will need to park at Palenica Białczańska and then walk from there.
Be Ready to Walk For Hours
When you are at Palenica Białczańska, the journey begins. In order to enter to this National Park you will need to pay 5 PLN or 1.30 Euros per person. After that you have two options to continue:
1) Walk to the top of the mountain – 9km and it will take you more or less 2 hours and 20 minutes.
2) Take a cart with horses – this is other solution, but I encourage you to not choose this one, as there were several critics against the owners of the horses. It is said that the horses are extremely tired and not well fed. But in case you have a broken leg or you go with an elderly person, well, you don’t have any other alternative. The cost is 50 PLN per person only one way.
As I love horses I will continue talking about the walking alternative. As I mentioned, you will need to walk more or less 9km. It might seem like a lot of kilometers, and you are not mistaken, but the journey is totally worth it! The route is relatively easy to accomplish, on the way there are a few public toilets, and a few benches where you can rest for a while. The landscapes that you will see are unique so you will not be bored. My recommendation: take comfortable shoes and a lot of water!
Reaching the Top of the Mountain
After two hours of a lovely journey, you will finally reach Morskie Oko. No matter in which season of the year you are visiting, there will always be a lot of people. You can walk around the lake but it is important to mention this: It is prohibited to swim in the lake. Why? Because it’s really dangerous, as I mentioned before it is one of the deepest lakes in Poland so it is not worth to risk your life, plus the water is extremely cold.
Video About Morskie Oko
When at the lake you will have the best view ever, be sure to have enough battery on your camera or smartphone because you will take dozens of pictures to preserve the moment. Morskie Oko is the perfect spot to sit, relax and enjoy the nature.
If after the journey you are extremely tired and you don’t want to walk again nine kilometers, well I have good news for you. Right in front of Morskie Oko, there is a hostel! It is the oldest one in the Tatra mountains, the name of it is Stanisława Staszica. I strongly recommend you to book in advance as the hostel only has 77 beds.
The Best Time of the Year to Visit The Eye of the Sea?
The best time of year in my opinion to visit Morskie Oko is during spring or summer, because it is a mountainous area, the probability of rain is very high, so you will have to wear a good jacket to avoid getting wet and cold.
Now, if you like the extreme and love walking at temperatures below zero degrees, then going to Morskie Oko during winter is for you. I have not done this personally, but the photos during the winter look impressive, so the landscape will be worth it. But honestly I can not imagine anyone walking for more than 3 hours in temperatures with -10 degrees, I think this is only for the adrenaline lovers.
Is Morskie Oko Worth a Visit?
Absolutely! I have been travelling around Poland for the last five years, and so far this place has been the one that impressed me the most! When you are there you feel together with the nature, completely relaxed and you forget about everything when you are sitting there. If you have a few days on your trip around Poland, you should definitely consider to go to Zakopane and Morskie Oko. You will not regret it.
Have you been in Morskie Oko? Did you like it? Are you planning to go for the first time? Leave your comments!