Both my guide books, for Poland and for Slovakia, recommended a rafting tour on the Dunajec. The pictures of the wooden rafts lazily drifting down the river looked inviting and enticing. Especially on this wonderful day with clear blue sky and sunshine. After having spent just hours underground in the Wieliczka Salt Mine, I was more than happy that the ‘activity’ for the next day was outside.
You might wonder why I put ‘activity’ in quotation, but it turned out that rafting on the Dunajec is a rather relaxing affair. The tourists sit and listen and the two local guides (always men as tradition wills it) row the raft along river. Before this major event though, we spent the night somewhere near the river. The village of Czorstyn offered a bed in form of the Kinga Hotel and a meal across the street in a traditional restaurant. Best of all was the sunset though.
The next morning started bright and early with a bit of fog. Once we arrived at the Pieniny National Park though, the sun was already out. The information on the board outside was a bit unclear, but it didn’t deter us to line up anyway. Which was great idea because in no time at all were we sitting on a raft.
As you can see we prepared ourselves for the day outside with sunglasses and a smile. We sat in the last row and the guide in front was regaling the other tourists with stories in Polish. But the local guide behind us translated all the legends for us in to English, so that we didn’t miss a thing.
Basically every bend in the river Dunajec brings you a different view. Now wonder this part of the river is the most scenic.
The whole tour takes about three hours and all the while you listen to stories of which you don’t understand anything. Our personal translator only deemed half the stories as interesting enough to recount for us in English. Time does fly by though while you sit on the raft and watch other people exercise. Eventually the scenery gets more interesting and you will pass the Seven Monks, a rock formation.
There was more to come with another legend. I think this time it was about the Seventh Monk, because when you look closer at the other picture you see only six rock formations. I think one got away and this is his rock.
But of course it could have been something else completely. As already mentioned before our translator was kind of picky when it came to his translations. That doesn’t change the fact though that the landscape is beautiful. The languid tour on the Dunajec gives you ample time soak it all up.
Once we arrived, we waited for the shuttle to bring us back to our car. We were on a road trip after all and there was still much to come. But first we crossed the border into Slovakia and had a large ice coffee each. Because didn’t we deserve that after our rafting tour? Yours, Pollybert