The beautiful Polish city of Krakow is a great holiday destination. However, you might be looking at ways to get out and experience more of Poland. We believe that on the top of your list should be the one day trip to Zakopane from Krakow. We’ll tell you why.
Zakopane is a nice little village at the feet of the Tatra Mountains. It has a great pedestrian-only city centre. You will be able to find many bars and restaurants to enjoy.
Although small, Zakopane is a very popular destination for tourists. It’s a favourite of those who love hiking and being in the mountains. Whether it is winter or summer you will always have access to hiking in the Tatra Mountains from this village.
This is the main pedestrian-only street of Zakopane. We recommend starting your visit here. You will be able to get a quick coffee and some breakfast if you desire. You can also experience the local architecture and some traditional buildings, found on each side of Krupowki.
Zakopane Museums and Exhibitions
At the southern end of Krupowki, there is also a wax museum. We recommend checking the pictures of the official website before visiting. If it interests you it’s worth checking out, otherwise, we would say skip for a one day trip.
On the other hand, there is another Zakopane attraction near the wax museum. It’s called the Myszogrod, and it’s a rodent kingdom. This attraction is a favourite of little children. If you are travelling with a family we highly recommend a visit, even for a day trip. There are small cities, houses and castles built for the tiny animals. You will be able to observe them living their lives inside.
If you are on a family vacation, there is also a Reptile exhibition in Zakopane you can visit. If your children love reptiles it might be a great opportunity to check them out and learn more about these animals.
Zakopane Farmer’s Market
Open every day from 9 AM you can find the farmer’s market at the feet of Gubalowka mountain. You will be able to find all kinds of handmade and locally produced goods here. If you are looking to take home some souvenirs, this is the place you want to be. From woodworking to leather products you will be able to find almost anything here.
The Upside Down House
As a really popular spot for tourism, you can check out the upside-down house of Zakopane. It is what the name says. A house flipped onto its roof. You can explore inside and outside, and get some great opportunities for goofy pictures. As this attraction is quite small and can be done easily, it’s a great fit for a one day trip to Zakopane from Krakow.
This attraction is good for checking out if you have no interest to go hiking on your day trip. From the farmer’s market, you can take the funicular up to the ridge of Gubalowka. On the ridge, you will be able to enjoy nature and walk around.
There are small shops and shacks up on the mountain. You will be able to get some food or enjoy some of the attractions like the adventure park. From the top, you will also get a great view of the city and some good picture taking opportunities.
Tatra Mountains National Park
Arguably one of the most popular attractions is the Tatra Mountains in Zakopane. The whole mountain range is a big national park. Whenever visiting for a day trip to Zakopane from Krakow, we recommend at least a quick visit. It’s a picturesque place worthy of your time.
Depending on how much you want to spend hiking or walking in the national park there are a couple of options. The easiest way to experience the beauty of this park is to take the cable car to the top of Kasprowy Wierch. From Kasprowy Wierch you will have amazing views of the surrounding area. This way you can get the views but skip the hiking, which is great for a day trip. If you are planning on the cable car, it’s best to buy tickets in advance. There can be quite a bit of a line waiting for the ride to the top. Head over to the official website where you can reserve your tickets.
We have one more recommendation for you, that is the Nosal mountain peak. This is quite probably the easiest and quickest hike in the Tatra Mountains. As it’s only around 2-3 hours, it can perfectly fit into your day trip.
One Day Trip to Zakopane from Krakow Options
As for your arrangement you have a couple of options to consider. If you have a car and plan ahead, you can easily arrange the day trip by yourself. You will be able to spend the full day in Zakopane and enjoy your free time. Getting from Krakow to Zakopane is easy, but you have to mind the traffic. There is usually a traffic jam during midday.
Another option is to go on an English tour. They are available from Krakow. It’s good to consider this possibility for your day tour. The local guide will be English speaking and will cover all the tourism information you require on such a trip. It’s great if you want to worry less about planning, and just want to enjoy a nice day trip in Zakopane.
In case you are looking for more tips, check out our free things to do in Krakow guide.