It´s size is incomparable to vast European regions such as Tyrol or Bavaria, but I think we can agree that size does not matter. What matters are the possibilities for exploration and in this category it is a worthy competitor. It´s uniqueness lies in the rich variety of outdoor activities crammed into such a small area. This region is a paradise for hikers, cyclists, mountain-bikers, cragsmen, rock climbers, water-enthusiasts and more.
It is not important which activity you choose. Whether you would like to climb steep cliffs, raft a wild river, summit mountain peaks and explore deep valleys by foot or guided by high altitude currents from a bird´s perspective, or just laze by the water Liptov´s natural beauty is full of endless opportunities for adventure. So if you ever find yourself asking yourself the question “Why Liptov?”, then look no further for the answer. Here you have it: a very “modest” list of 10 activities to experience, take-on, realize (whatever you wish) in the beautiful region of Liptov.
1 | CYCLING AND MOUNTAIN BIKING
Let´s begin with cycling. A sport of many faces which can adapt to any terrain. Liptov´s location, wedged between several mountain chains, two national parks and several valleys extending to a relatively flat plateau makes it an ideal spot for this sport. Breathtaking descents and steep ascends across the Low Tatras and almost pristine Veľká Fatra mountain ranges await. For those who prefer flatlands there are many options for recreational cyclists. Whichever you prefer, Liptov definitely has something to offer to satisfy your tastes. Whatever path you chose, a beautiful scenery and views of surrounding mountain peaks and mysterious forests will accompany you.
If you wish to give something unusual a try, chose the recently-reconstructed bicycle path which is actually a former historical railway to Korytnica (a once quite-famous spa).
2 | HIKING
The heart of Liptov and the main reason why it is visited by thousands of tourists from all over Central Europe every year. The possibilities here are endless. The pathways are one of the best-marked in the world and mountain cabins with delicious soup, beer and/or tea are never far. And the views…
3 | CLIMBING
Do you love the feeling of freedom as you are hanging on a rope and your every thought is deeply concentrated on which rock or overhang will guide your next move skyward? There are plenty of opportunities to indulge. Practically the entire Liptov region is full of either rock-climbing walls or massive rock cliffs which are significantly longer. Does not matter if you feel more comfortable ascending simple walls or prefer to solve the more complex puzzles in the world of rock/cliff climbing, you will find your niche here.
For example, you can visit the famous Machnaté in the Demänovská valley and fight gravity for some tens of meters while taking in the captivating view of Low Tatras.
4 | DOWNHILL AND ALPINE SKIING
Skiing has a synonym in Liptov: “Jasná”, probably one of the best ski resorts in Slovakia. Its parameters are comparable to those in the Alps and it will surely satisfy experienced skiers used to challenging slopes. If you happen to visit Liptov in the winter, be sure to include skiing in your itinerary and enjoy some great rides with spectacular views of the Western Tatras mountain range. Just take the cable car to Chopok to 2000 m above sea level and you will find yourself on a different planet. Moreover, individuals who love the freedom of alpine skiing can summit basically any peak of the Low Tatras, Western Tatras or Veľká Fatra ridges.
5 | CROSS COUNTRY SKIING
A different category, different muscles and another type of sport but the same environment and views. Liptov´s gorgeous plateau is full of a variety of cross-country skiing trails which allow you to enjoy nature in a less crowded environment than at a ski center. To warm you up after a day in the snow, places which will serve you hot tea with rum are never far.
6 | PARAGLIDING
Who wouldn´t want to observe nature from a height of hundreds of meters? If you´re feeling too lazy to exhort the effort required to summit a peak under the scorching sun then try paragliding high over the peaks and valleys of Liptov. Spectacular scenery will reward you for overcoming your fear.
7 | RAFTING
It is true! Slovakia also has its own white water. The natural wild river in Liptov is in high demand in the spring. So if you see the snow melting in the valleys, it´s time to get on the Belá River and experience a great adventure under the majestic Kriváň.
8 | CAVING
Are the wind and the rain preventing you from exploring the outdoors? Not a problem, there is a possibility to explore nature inside, in two marvelous caves: Demänová Ice Cave and Demänová Liberty Cave. This time we are going underground to explore the mystic world of stalactites, stalagmites, underground rivers and lakes and even underground freezers in a sort of living room of nature (not any less fascinating than its surrounding atriums).
9 | SWIMMING
Did you have a challenging day spent in high altitudes? It is time to cool off in the mighty waters Liptovská Mara where the waves come as a surprise. If you consider yourself more of a resort-type, then visit Tatralandia or Thermal Park. You will definitely not be the only one who decided to visit thesee aqua parks, but there is a variety of options for relaxation (warm-water pools, saunas) as well as adventure (toboggans).
10 | WILDLIFE WATCHING
We have saved the best for last. In Liptov you will never be far from wilderness. It is lurking behind every corner, in every valley, at the edge of every forest and meadow. Shepherds know what we are talking about. We are referring to those who have considered Liptov their home longer than people – animals. Various predators such as wolves, lynxes, otters and even bears can be found here in abundance. And on slopes and meadows high in the mountains grouse, marmots and (the symbol of Tatras) chamois are in power here. Look for guides offering “wildlife watching” services and you can spend the day with the main inhabitants of Liptov´s mountains… if you are not afraid, of course :).
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© Expedition Slovakia 2017