Babia Góra was joined to the network of Biosphere Reserves
UNESCO (Man and Biosphere Programme) in 1977 in recognition
of its specific values. It was not accidental distinction
because the massif of Babia Góra presents unique ecosystems,
it has long history of nature protection and it is a place
of intensive science research.
View from Babia Góra mountain. Photo:
Babia Góra is the highest massif in West Beskidy. In view
of its special beauty it is called “Queen of Beskidy” and
her moody nature is a cause of her second name: “Mother of
Bad Weather”. But sometimes in her kindness, she donates good
visibility then she becomes one of the most beautiful view
places in Poland. Wonderful sunrises, sunsets and picturesque
landscapes are her card. From the summit you can see The Tatra
Mountains, The Pieniny Mountains, ranges of Beskidy and even
Cracow (famous Polish city,100 km from Babia Góra).
The southern mountainsides are mildly drooping. The northern
mountainsides are steep and criss-crossed by streams. There
are characteristic rocks, rocky debris and they create the
surroundings resembling more Alps than Beskidy. Water coming
from the northern mountainsides drains to The Baltic Sea and
water from the southern side drains to The Black Sea.
Babia Góra is perfect example of plants zonation in mountains.
Reach flora is a place of living for variety of animals. There
are some species which have their breeding-grounds just in
The East Carpathians and Alps. Sometimes some hunters as wolf
or bear appear in the Biosphere Reserve, but it is little
probability to meet them because the avoid crowded trials.
The most numerous is insects’ world which have several thousands
of species. Some of them exist only in Babia Góra.
Besides the natural resources Babia Góra owns specific cultural
heritage shaped by stormy history of the region where different
nations, religions and cultures influences local communities.
Traditional activities practiced for centuries by local people
are preserved until now (for example pasturage). Local dialect
and customs are still alive.
The number of tourists visiting Biosphere Reserve increased
from 40.000 in 1991 to nearly 80.000 in 2003. Babia Góra offers
them hiking, bicycle riding, horse riding, skiing, sledging,
trips on Slovakian side, fishing, gathering forest fruits,
camping, agrotourist facilities, sightseeing, studying culture