Kuźnice – Murowaniec, Tatra Mountains


The Kuźnice – Murowaniec – Kuźnice trail is a moderate route with a distance of 9,5 km and 637 m of elevation gain. It starts and ends near the lower station of the Kasprowy Wierch cable car. Time to complete the trail, including breaks and a longer rest in a mountain hut on Hala Gąsienicowa, is about 5 hours. We recommend this trail as an interesting alternative to a popular ride in the cable car to the top of Kasprowy Wierch in a conviction that it will offer students a range of unique sightseeing and educational experiences, in addition to the pleasures of mountain hiking in the company of friends. The proposed trail forms a loop, with a yellow one taking you up, and the blue one down, back to the spot where the hike started (the opposite direction is also possible).


The Mountain Hut Murowaniec is located at an altitude of 1500 m in Hala Gąsienicowa. This place is the main hiking point for trips in the Polish Tatras and the presence of mountaineers and rock climbers would provide a great company for an overnight stay if you choose this location.

Hala Gąsienicowa is located in a stunning high-mountain valley with its wide, open space surrounded by towering peaks, creating a magnificent amphitheatre-like landscape. The sweeping panoramic views of the surrounding Tatra range, make Hala Gąsienicowa a favourite destination among hikers seeking breathtaking vistas. One of the notable features of Hala Gąsienicowa is its alpine meadows, covered with vibrant grasses and blooming wildflowers during the summer months. From the valley, hikers can embark on adventures to iconic locations like Morskie Oko, a stunning glacial lake, or climb to the summit of Rysy, the highest peak in the Polish Tatras. A feasible plan for a school trip would be to walk to Czarny Staw Gąsienicowy that can be reached from the mountain hut in about half an hour. It is a beautifully located mountain pond with spectacular views all around.

Meteorological station on Hala Gąsienicowa has existed since 1913. The observation data collected there have been used for snow and avalanche research and measurements from the very beginning. It was the first mountain meteorological station on Polish territory. Its establishment was initiated by the Natural History Section of the Tatra Society. At present, the Station at Hala Gąsienicowa is one of the most important meteorological stations in the Tatra Mountains. It represents the climatic conditions of the upper forest limit. It is situated on the slope of the Sucha Woda valley, in the cool climate floor. It is surrounded to the east, west and south by the Tatra peaks of three different physical-geographical units – the High Tatras, the Western Tatras and the Reglé Tatras – with relative heights of up to 1,000 m above valley level. A visit at the Meteorological station would provide a number of interesting educational topics, some of which we outline in the following learning scenario.


Kuźnice is part of Zakopane located in the northern part of the Bystra Valley in the Western Tatras, where the trails to Kalatówki, Kondratowa, Giewont, Kasprowy Wierch, and Hala Gąsienicowa begin. Zakopane, located at a distance of around 70 km from Kraków, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Poland, that can be reached by car or bus (unfortunately not by train due to prolonged modernisation of the railway, still underway at the time of writing this publication). When you arrive in Zakopane, it is most convenient to come to Kuźnice using a bus from the main bus station or from several other stops in Zakopane. Access to the spot where the trail begins is only allowed to licensed taxis and buses, so if you come in your own bus it will have to be left in a parking lot at a walking distance of around 30 minutes from the entrance to the trail. To enter the trail you will need to buy tickets to the Tatra National park, so it is worth reminding the students to take their student IDs which will qualify the group for a reduced ticket price.


Obviously the region of Zakopane offers plenty of tourist attractions. In what follows we have chosen some of those which can provide engaging topics for a school learning trip.

The Route of Wooden Architecture

IT was established in 2001 to popularise historic wooden buildings in southern Poland and runs through the provinces of Małopolska, Podkarpacie, Świętokrzyskie and Śląskie. The trail includes sacred buildings including churches, orthodox churches, bell chapels, as well as manors, cottages, homesteads, open-air museums, granaries, villas and inns.

The Tatra Museum

The museum is located in Zakopane and is certainly the most important museum dedicated to the Tatra region and the history of Zakopane. The museum consists of several branches that present various aspects of the history, nature, and culture of the Tatra region.

The Witkacy Theatre in Zakopane

It is a cultural institution dedicated to promoting the works of Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz, also known as Witkacy. Witkacy was a prominent Polish playwright, painter, philosopher, and art theorist. The theatre is located in a picturesque wooden building in the centre of Zakopane.

Ski Jump Wielka Krokiew

It is located in Zakopane, is a great attraction not only to sports lovers. It is an active sports facility: the hill is a part of the Olympic Preparations Centre in Zakopane. Since its inauguration in 1925, numerous ski jumping competitions and championships have been and still are held at Wielka Krokiew, e.g. Polish Ski Jumping Championships or Ski Jumping World Cup.