Zakopane mountains
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Best Time to Visit Zakopane in Poland?

Thinking of a nice trip but wondering what’s the best time to visit Zakopane?

Zakopane is a small town in southern Poland in Central Europe that is surrounded by the beautiful Tatra Mountains. It attracts tourists with its beautiful scenery, rich cultural history, and many outdoor activities. Sounds great, right? But what is the best time to visit Zakopane?

This is important if you want to get the most out of your trip to this beautiful mountainous area.

I was honestly very impressed by this charming town, the vibe and the beautiful surroundings!

So, let’s answer this question and let’s go into more depth.

What is the best time to visit Zakopane?

The best time to go to Zakopane varies a lot depending on the activities you like to do and the weather you like. This charming Polish town has something special to offer in every season, so each time you visit, you will have a unique and enjoyable experience.

But let’s break down the seasons so you’ll get a better idea of what I mean:

  • Winter (December to March):

If your idea of fun is doing winter sports like skiing, snowboarding, or snowshoeing, or if you love the magical feeling of a winter scene, then you should go to Zakopane in the winter.

From December to March, there is often a lot of snow in Zakopane, which makes it a great place for a variety of winter sports. The town is covered in snow, and the streets are full of happy people celebrating Christmas and the New Year.

Morskie Oko near Zakopane in winter
Morskie Oko near Zakopane in winter

But keep in mind that the weather at this time of year can often drop below freezing, so bring your warmest clothes and dress well!

  • Spring and Summer (April to September):

If you like warmer weather, you should go to Zakopane in the spring or summer, from late April to September. During these months, temperatures range from 15°C to 25°C and are generally warm and pleasant.

This time of year is also great for outdoor activities like camping, climbing, and learning about the local plants and animals. The Tatra mountains are full of wildflowers, which make for beautiful scenery that photographers love to capture.

Zakopane in spring
Zakopane in spring

During the summer, there are also many cultural festivals, which are a great way to learn about local traditions and customs.

  • Fall (October to November):

Autumn, which lasts from October to November, is another beautiful time to visit Zakopane. As you can see by now, I love every season in this great town!

During this time, the leaves change color, making a beautiful palette of red, orange, and gold that changes the way the scenery looks but doesn’t change how beautiful it is.

Zakopane in fall in best time to visit Zakopane
Zakopane in fall

Temperatures in autumn range from 5°C to 15°C, which is cooler than summer but warmer than winter.

But again, the best time to visit Zakopane is when you want it to be, whether you want to ski down snow-capped slopes, hike through wildflower fields in bloom, or walk through golden landscapes. I’ll leave this up to you!

What is the weather like in Zakopane over the year?

The weather in Zakopane changes a lot throughout the year, and each season has its own feel. During the winter, from December to March, snow covers Zakopane and temperatures often drop below zero.

It’s a beautiful sight to see the town and its surroundings covered in snow, and the cold air adds to the magic.

On the other hand, the summer, from June to August, is very different. The weather ranges from cool to warm, with highs that rarely go above 25°C.

If you want to get away from the strong summer heat that is common in many parts of Europe you can do so during these months.

During times of transition, like fall and spring, the weather can be different. In the spring, especially from April to May, the temperature rises slowly and nature comes to life with bright flowers.

In September and October, the autumn colors are at their most beautiful, with shades of red, orange, and gold covering the green fields. Very recommendable!

What is the best month for snow in Zakopane?

I would say that January is the best month for if you’re a snow lover and like to do winter sports in Zakopane.

This is the coldest month in Zakopane, with an average snowfall of up to 50 cm, making it great for a variety of winter sports and creating beautiful snowy landscapes.

What is the best time of year to ski in Poland?

Skiing is an extremely popular thing to do in Poland, and the best time to do it is from December to February, when winter is at its peak.

Skiing in Zakopane in best time to visit Zakopane
Skiing in Zakopane

Zakopane is the unofficial winter city of Poland, and it is a great place to go skiing. During these months, the town gets a lot of snow, which makes it a great place for skiers of all skill levels.

Visiting Zakopane: FAQs

Feeling excited about visiting Zakopane? The information below will help you prepare for your trip to South Poland!

Why is Zakopane so popular?

Zakopane is a very different experience compared to other popular destinations in Poland like Warsaw or Krakow.

Zakopane is very popular because it has a unique mix of natural beauty, cultural diversity, and outdoor activities that can be done all year long.

It has something for everyone, from high-energy adventures to relaxation surrounded by beautiful mountains.

The Winter Capital of Poland is a good name for Zakopane, which is known for its long ski slopes, well-groomed snowboarding tracks, and inviting hiking paths for people of all skill levels.

The town is at the foot of the Tatra Mountains, which makes it a great place to explore and see amazing views.

Zakopane has a rich cultural vein that goes along with its natural beauty. It is known for its unique wooden buildings, especially the Zakopane Style, which has become an important cultural marker.

Zakopane style house in best time to visit Zakopane
Zakopane style house

Throughout the year, the town also has many music and folklore events that show off its rich cultural and artistic life.

Is Zakopane a party town?

Even though Zakopane is mostly known for its outdoor activities and peaceful atmosphere, it also has a busy nightlife.

It has a lot of pubs, bars, and nightclubs, especially around the busy Krupówki Street.

This gives you, if you’re looking for fun things to do after a day of exploring, a lot of choices. There is also live music at many places, including traditional Goral folk music, which adds to the fun and festive mood.

How many days do you need in Zakopane?

Depending on what you want to do, the best length of time to stay in Zakopane is between three and four days.

This should give you enough time to enjoy the town’s vibe, see the main sights, and do some outdoor activities.

Whether you want to hike in the beautiful Tatra Mountains, check out the unique wooden buildings, or just take in the peaceful scenery, Zakopane has a lot for you to do while you’re there.

Do they speak English in Zakopane?

Yes, many people in Zakopane speak English, especially in the tourist and hospitality industries. They have to because of the many tourists.

Poland’s younger people usually start learning English at a young age, and most hotel, restaurant, and tourist site workers in Zakopane speak English pretty well.

So you can be sure that language won’t get in the way of your Zakopane trip.

Is Zakopane cheap?

Compared to many European holiday spots, Zakopane is a very affordable place to visit, and you get a lot for your money. Here are some of the most common costs you can expect on your trip:

  • Accommodation: Depending on what you want, a night in a cheap hostel can cost as little as PLN 50 (about €12), while a room in a mid-range hotel might cost PLN 150–200 (about €46-50).

    Prices for high-end hotels and houses start at PLN 300 (€70 or more) and go up from there.
  • Eating Out: When it comes to eating, there are a lot of different places to choose from that fit different budgets.

    A meal at a cheap restaurant might cost PLN 20–30 (€4-7), while a three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant might cost PLN 100–150 (€23–36).
  • Transport: Local bus rides cost between PLN 3 and PLN 5 (€0.60 to €1.20), making them a cheap way to get around the city. If you want to take a cab, you can expect to pay between PLN 2-3 (€0.40-0.70) per kilometer.
  • Activities: Depending on what you want to do, activities cost different amounts of money. For example, during peak season, a one-day ski pass usually costs around PLN 100 (€25).

    The cost to get into the Tatra National Park is about PLN 6 (€1.50), if you want to check it out.
  • Shopping: Small souvenirs and handicrafts made in Poland can cost as little as PLN 10 (€2.5) and as much as PLN 100 (€23) for bigger items or unique goods.

Just keep in mind that these are just average prices and that the actual costs may be different based on the time of year, where you are, and how the exchange rate changes.

But still, if you set a budget and plan ahead, you can have a great trip to Zakopane without spending an awful lot of money.

How do you get around Zakopane?

Even though Zakopane is a small place, there are many ways to get around.

The town is small enough that you can get around on foot, so taking a walk is a great way to see it. This is the way I loved to get around in Zakopane.

However, local busses run often and consistently, and they can take you farther. There are also przewóz osób, which are minibusses that make it easy to get to different tourist spots and climbing trailheads.

What is the most famous street in Zakopane?

That’s easy to answer! It’s Krupówki Street. This street in Zakopane is without a doubt the most famous and well-known place there.

Street food in Krupówki Street
Street food in Krupówki Street

As the main street in town, it’s a busy place with shops, bars, and cafes. It’s a great place to go shopping, try some of the local food, or just take in the scene and watch the world go by.

The Wrap-Up: Best Time to Visit Zakopane?

So, what is the best time to visit Zakopane? Well, the best time to go to Zakopane really depends a lot on what you like to do.

Zakopane has something for every kind of traveler, all year long, whether you like the thrill of winter sports, the adventure of summer walks through green trails, or the fun of learning about the local culture and architecture.

Each season shows Zakopane in a different way, and each visit brings new thrills and things to remember. However, I personally love the summer in Zakopane so this would be my recommendation!

So, when will your Zakopane trip start?

If you’re looking to take some souvenirs home with you, check out my post about the best Polish souvenirs!

Your restless voyager,

Dustin

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