TATRA MOUNTAIN SCHELTERS
Shelter in Morskie Oko is situated in the Dolina Rybiego Potoku (Fish Brook Valley) in the High Tatras. Located at an altitude of 1410 m, it was built in 1908 and after the renovation in the years 1988-1992, the modern shelter offers 35 beds in 3-6 bed rooms. The building was recognized as historic in 1976 and is legally protected. It is one of the most popular facilities in the whole of the Tatras and in 1997 it was visited by Pope John Paul II. Next to the new shelter is the oldest in the Tatras, which houses an additional 43 people in 13, 14 and 16 person dorms. Facilities include a kitchen, showers, storage, dryers and a buffet.
Built in the years 1947-1953, the shelter in the Dolina Pieciu Stawow Polskich (Five Polish Lakes Valley) by Przedni Staw (Front Lake) at an altitude of 1671 m, it is the highest positioned mountain shelter in Poland. The chalet offers 67 beds in 2 to 10-person rooms. The most inaccessible shelter in the Polish Tatra Mountains, which can only be reached on foot. Facilities include a dining room, kitchen, buffet, ski and equipment rental, storage and a small boutique. Additionally, there are several courses ran throughout the year at the shelter, which boasts its own eco-friendly mini hydroelectric power station. http://www.piecstawow.pl/index.php/en/
After several demolitions towards the end of the 19th century, which were carried out as a result of the old building falling into disrepair, the current shelter was built in 1913 and is situated by the old road which led to Morskie Oko. After several expansions in the 1930s, it now offers 75 beds in 2 to 9 person rooms as well as a buffet, dining room and a salon. It should be noted that mobile phone signal can be very limited in the area but the shelter does offer wireless internet. In the autumn, deer rut can occur in the nearby fields. During World War II, Roztoka served as a German border guard outpost and has also welcomed numerous celebrities throughout the years.
A famous mountain shelter on Hala Gasienicowa, built by Podhale Rifles during WWII just below the Czarny Staw Gasienicowy, was originally opened to the public in 1926 but had to be restored in 1964 after a fire broke out. The area surrounding the shelter offers some great photo opportunities. There is a meteorological station situated nearby which was built in 1949. The reception desk is open from 8am to 9pm and there are 120 places in 2 to 12 person rooms, with group discounts available. For more info visit:
The Kalatowki Mountain Hotel, which is located at an altitude of 1198 m in the beautiful Bystra Valley, is one of the most popular shelters among tourists wishing to see the splendour of the Tatras first thing in the morning after a good night’s rest. Apart from stunning views and modern facilities, the hotel also boats a restaurant, bar and offers seasonal treats such as Jazz events and a Christmas supper for the whole family. Summertime provides an opportunity to watch local shepherds at work and buy fresh, regional dairy produce whereas in the winter there are ski lifts open and other attractions available. Rooms can house anything from 1 to 5 people and there is also an option of booking an en-suite appartment in advance, with breakfast included in the package. For more info visit: www.kalatowki.pl/en.html
Voted as the most pleasant outside of the Alps in 1970 and situated an hour’s trek from Kuznice at an altitude of 1333 m, the shelter was built just after the second world war and has hosted some on the most famous Polish personalities over the decades. Thousands of tourists flock to Hala Kondratowa every year and the guestbook even includes four legged visitors such as deers, chamoix and even bears. The smallest of all shelters, it offers accommodation for 20 people in 6 or 8 person rooms, with breakfast included. Despite there being a giant boulder resting on the side of the building, which in 1953 broke off the side of Giewont and crashed into the dining room, the likelihood of avalanches falling in the area in extremely low. For more info visit: halakondratowa.pl/en
The Ornak Shelter offers a cosy atmosphere, home made meals and small events throughout the year. Located in the Koscieliska Valley at an altitude of 1100 m, it is a great starting point for many treks in the Western Tatras. Reopened to the public in 1948, it was destroyed during the second world war when it served as a shelter for Polish freedom fighters travelling between Poland and Hungary. The shelter has 48 beds available throughout the year in 2 to 8 person rooms, bathrooms and an underground kitchen at the guests’ disposal, with discounts available for families. Keep an eye out for small concerts, exhibitions and other events which regularly take place at the shelter.
Located at an altitude of 1146 meters above sea level, it is the main base in the region of the Chocholowska Valley. It is also the largest shelter in the Polish Tatras. Open throughout the year, offers 121 places in 2-, 3-, 4-, 6-, 8-, and 14-person rooms. Facilities include a common room, storage room, a shared kitchen and a drying room. During his second pilgrimage to his homeland on June 23, 1983, Pope John Paul II stayed in the valley, which was commemorated by a plaque which hangs at the entrance to the shelter. http://chocholowska.com