Every year in spring, at the end of March and the beginning of April, we can admire the extraordinary spectacle of nature when dormant life awakens, the snow disappears, and the Podhale meadows and then the Tatra glades become covered with a sea of purple flowers. At least 120 million crocuses grow in Tatra National Park! They are undoubtedly the most recognisable landmark of the Kościelisko Municipality. The most famous place to admire crocuses is the Chochołowska Valley, the longest and largest valley in the Tatra Mountains within Polish borders. Its gentle floor encourages walks, numerous shepherd's huts fit in with the landscape's character, and the most frequent destination is the mountain shelter on the Chochołowska Glade. However, the Chochołowska Valley is not the only area where crocuses bloom in abundance. In the Tatra Mountains, you can find other, just as charming but less crowded places,for example, Kościeliska Valley, Kalatówki, Kopieniec, Droga pod Reglami, Toporowa Cyrhla, Kościelisko, Witów and Dzianisz. Below is a map of crocus locations.
Remember! Crocuses, called tulipanki by highlanders, are protected in Poland! The rapid increase in popularity of crocus tours in recent years has resulted in trampled crocuses, litter strewn throughout the area, giant traffic jams, queues to the entry point and record crowds on the Chochołowska Valley trail. We appeal for prudence and adherence to the rules and regulations of Tatra National Park and the code of the ‘Ani Krok(s) Dalej!’ [Not A Step Farther!] Campaign to protect crocuses:
- Admire and photograph crocuses from the hiking trail.
- Do not enter clearings and do not go near the crocuses.
- Don't sit (!) or lie down (!) in the crocuses while photographing or posing for photos.
- Don't pick crocuses – your only souvenirs are your photos.
- Do not park on the crocuses.
- Take your rubbish with you.
- Use the toilets in the mountain hostels or portable toilets along the trail.
- Defend the crocuses. If you see inappropriate behaviour, react!
Crocuses also grow outside the Tatra Mountains. In autumn, 2 million bulbs of these flowers were planted in Muszyna and are now starting to emerge. It will undeniably be quite an attraction!