Route 14: Around the "Little Wawel"
Sucha Beskidzka, Krzeszów (11 km) Leskowiec (20 km) Groń Jana Pawła II (21 km) Tarnawa Dolna (34 km) Zembrzyce (37 km) Sucha Beskidzka (41,5 km)
41,5 km, 5 h, difficulty – medium
Altitude profile of the route:
It is quite a difficult mountain route with a trip to John Paul II Mountain. We will go along the roads and trails that Karol Wojtyła, the future pope, travelled years ago. We set off in Sucha Beskidzka from the train station and go left on Mickiewicza Street. At the traffic lights, we turn left again (Przemysłowa Street), and to the right after the bridge over Stryszawka. We go left through the Błądzanka Valley to the Lipie Pass and from there we descend to the valley of the Ustrzyzna Stream. We turn right (blue trail) and approach Krzeszów by a long, gentle climb. At the church we turn left following the green trail (if we choose the shorter version, we go to Tarnawa G.). After 1.5 km the trail turns right and we continue straight ahead and at then, at the intersection, we turn right to Targoszów. In front of the tourist centre we follow the yellow signs to the right and "climb" to the Rola settlement, where we turn left and then right. We enter a dirt road, which will lead us to the red hiking trail. We turn left, after 200 m we leave the trail, which turns right, and along a steep paved climb, we go left to get onto the yellow trail. We turn right up the hill (difficult section!), and having reached the flat area, we turn left to the peak of Leskowiec. We then take the red trail to the right and descend from the peak to the hostel and to John Paul II Mountain. From the hostel we head at Śleszowice, by the blue, then black and finally yellow trail. On the significant curve of the trail to the left, we turn sharply to the right. We take the dirt road and then the asphalt road to Śleszowicka Pass. We turn right, then after the church to the left and we descend along the Tarnawka Valley through Tarnawa D. to Zembrzyce. We turn right in front of the church and reach the Skawa River by a side street. We follow the Amber Trail (poorly marked) along the river to reach the other side of the river in Sucha Beskidzka by the footbridge over Skawa. After the market square, we turn right onto Zamkowa Street and then we reach the castle. We return to the market square in Sucha Beskidzka (the historic inn "Rzym") and turn right on Mickiewicza Street, the route ends.
ATTRACTIONS ON THE ROUTE:
1. John Paul II Mountain (992 m a.s.l.) – the only peak in the Beskids bearing the name of the Polish pope. A node of hiking trails and the destination of numerous trips. A wooden chapel can be found nearby – it is a mountain sanctuary, erected in 1995 as a gift to John Paul II on the occasion of his 75th birthday. Stations of the Cross around the temple and the statue of John Paul II. There is also a year-round PTTK (Polish Tourist and Sightseeing Society) hostel "Laskowiec".
2. The church in Zembrzyce – built of brick in 1913. Equipment mainly from the 18th century, moved from a wooden church that existed here before. Particularly noteworthy is the 17th-century painting of the Virgin Mary with the Child, considered by the local people to have special favours.
3. The castle in Sucha Beskidzka – the former capital of the Sucha Beskidzka lands. After the reconstruction in 1614, it was given the appearance of an impressive magnate Renaissance residence. The most characteristic elements of the castle are four corner towers and a courtyard enclosed by two wings with multi-storey arcaded cloisters. A large park with an interesting orangery adjoins the castle. It currently houses the Municipal Museum of Sucha Beskidzka with a regional exhibition.
4. The inn "Rzym" in Sucha Beskidzka – a wooden building from the end of the 18th century, with a log structure, covered with shingles and with characteristic arcades of five arches. The interior of the inn is covered with beam ceilings. It is often combined with the legendary meeting of Jan Twardowski with Mephistopheles, described by the romantic poet Adam Mickiewicz.