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The descent down the river Krutynia

Kayaking down the Krutynia River: a refreshing (and fun) plan

The Krutynia River Canoe Tour is one of the most beautiful canoeing routes not only in Poland, but also in Europe. Without a doubt, a very refreshing plan!

Krutynia on our route through Poland
What to keep in mind?

On your trip to Poland you must kayak down the Krutynia River. You will not forget it!

If you are looking to kayak in Poland this is the ideal place, more than 110 km of descent down an unforgettable river.

For us it was one of the activities that we liked the most of the whole trip. If today you ask my children what they liked the most about Poland, they will tell you 3 things and one of them is this descent down the Krutynia river in Poland by kayak, and that the day we did it, it rained on us and I sparkle for almost the entire route! 

Without a doubt we love adventure!

What to see and do on the Krutynia river

Kayaking down the Krutynia River is quite an experience. The river constantly changes its character. The swift, shallow stream that runs through the Pisz Forest turns into a lovely, tranquil lowland river over time, snaking through thickets full of waterfowl.

Access and starting point of the descent of the Krutynia

The Krutynia River runs through the lake region in Poland. The point of ideal access to start this activity is the town of Krutyn, the first municipality after the source of the Krutynia that comes out of a large lake forming the Krutynia reserve and then flowing downward.

Krutyn you will see that it is a small town full of lodgings and kayak and canoe rental companies. That's where we come from.

In the picturesque lakes, and there are several of them, you can enjoy the wind and waves. It takes about 9 days to cover the entire 116-kilometer route of the Krutynia River. There are riverside hostels available (located approximately every 13 km, that is, at the end of each daily stage and relaxing from the canoe trip), holiday resorts, agritourism farms, guesthouses, even some hotels and plenty of great campervan sites. Also, if you go by motorhome or camper, don't worry, the same people who rent the kayak come to pick you up and take you to the starting point.

Rent a kayak in Krutynia

We park the motorhome in a parking lot on the main road of Krutynia and we rented two kayaks out of two at the Stanica Wodna PTTK bungalow hotel. This place was recommended to us by tourism, it is touching the river and has a restaurant bar with views that is super nice with swans and ducks and games for the children

It is rented by kilometers what do you want to travel and When you finish the kilometers you must call them by phone and they come to pick you up in a van. The price It is from about 12 € uros the kayak of 2 to 3 km.

The ideal for a family day with children is 3 km or 6 km. After 6 km the river told us that it stops being so calm.

You should also know that after 3 km you will have to take the kayak out of the river, since there is a dam, and drag it 100 meters (or hire one of those who have carts there to take them for a small fee) to rejoin the river.

And eating right there ... in an idyllic place ...

In fact we liked the place so much that we ate there. We ate really excellent. The fish soup was exquisite (which is not at all how you can imagine it… nothing strong and brutal in goodness) and the deer burger that they served us (the deer we learned later) was very good. For the children breaded chicken with fries. And for the post… a brutal apple pie served hot and with ice cream that buff I still salivate for one just the same lol 

 The real place that is incredible to hang out and eat. We loved it, one of the best places we have eaten in Poland, with beautiful views of the river and its swans. The girl at the reception also speaks good English. To rent the kayaks and book in the restaurant go to the direct reception, that is where they will attend you.

The water! The stages of the descent down the Krutynia

The activity of kayak, canoe or little boat led by a boatman in the Krutynia is an offer of various types of canoeing (several hours, weekend, several days, etc.). Remember, regardless of the type of kayak you choose, you can choose the sections you want to navigate on this highly diversified route, it adapts to everyone. There are short routes of 3 kilometers and over calm waters up to more than 100 km.

We tell you that the Krutynia in its initial section, due to its safe and very quiet nature, is even ideal for beginner canoeists and kayaking with young children.

Krutynia is considered one of the most beautiful lowland routes in Europe. It is very interesting and diverse, it goes through the Pisz forest, and from J. Mokre also through the Masurian Landscape Park.

It is not uncommon to find a white-tailed eagle or a golden eagle on the road. It is worth paying attention to the sponges and red algae that form on the stones. Surely you have not seen anything like it!

The banks of the trail are covered with magnificent oaks and tall pines, from which the masts of sailboats were once made. Kayaking trips on the Krutynia River usually start in Sorkwity. Navigating Sorkwity, the Evangelical church built around 1470 and the Von Mirbach family's Neo-Gothic palace built in 1850 are worth seeing.

 The first stage

The first stage of the canoe trip on the Krutynia River passes through J.Lampackie, J.Lampasz and the shallow and very quiet section of Krutynia called Sobiepanka to the Stanica water located on Lake Białe in Bieńki.

This stage is only 3 km long, ideal for beginners or if you go with small children like us. It ends up in a dam, so the river does not continue and everyone has to get their kayak out of the water whether or not it continues. If you want to continue you have to drag it about 200 meters. If you go with children this can be complicated, but luckily there are people right there with some cars that for a small price will take you the kayaks those 100 meters.

The next stages

The next sections of Krutynia allow you to enjoy the surrounding nature and give you the opportunity to live an experience as a survivor, since there is the possibility of spending the night on a desert island.

Also, during your trip to Krutynia, you can admire the Royal Pine Reserve with the Karol Małłek oak, about 500 years old, and the Masurian pine, the oldest tree of this species in the Lake District.

Ah! Adam Szubsk's Farmi is an incredible attraction in Zgon, where life-size sculptures are very colorful, even variegated, await you along the way. It is an image of animated people with their daily activities.

Remember that the Zakręt reserve deserves attention, with lakes and Floating Islands. The J.Krutyńskie - Ukta - section is considered the most beautiful on the Krutynia river route, as evidenced by the numerous trips of foreign tourists that pass through the section.

On the way from Krutynia to Ukta, you can visit the Filipon Monastery in Wojnowo, where you can see icons and crosses. In the city of Ukta you will find other attractions: the possibility of excursions on foot or by bicycle to the Wild Animal Park in Kadziłłów (more than 30 species of animals, among them: elk, bison, beaver, lynx, wolves) or to the forest lodge Pranie.

Did you know that everyone who has traveled the canoe trail on the Krutynia River says that the lowland crossing is one of the most beautiful and interesting in Europe?

Not to be missed!

Where to park and spend the night in Krutyn by motorhome: let's go to the best campsite in Poland 

In Krutyn to rent and do the Kayak activity you can park in the parking lot that you will find shared by different kayak companies to the right of the main entrance street of Krutyn. 

For the night we prefer to go to one of the best campsites in Poland, which we saw was not far away and on the way to the skansen that we wanted to go to see the next day. The campground had a private beach on a lake and lots of activities for the kids, we thought it was great. The price did not reach 25 euros per night for the 4, the motorhome and the dog and has prizes as the best camping in Poland.

Camping Tumiany, the best in Poland according to the federation of campsites of Poland

It's called camping Tumiany. The truth is that it was great especially for children with a circuit of tricycles, boats, there are also kayaks to rent for 5 euros and pedal boats, the beach of the lake where we bathe...

A paradise that was more like the Spanish coastal campsites than the ones we were used to in Poland, always more familiar and peaceful. The kids loved it.

To access the campsite you have to do it by a 3 km dirt road and better ignore the GPS. When exiting the highway at the roundabout, pay attention to the sign that says Camping 3 km away, pull over there.

 

Plan and organize your trip to Poland by motorhome in 6 clicks

To finish ... Useful travel guide to Poland by motorhome

Know a minimum about Poland. Poland guide by motorhome

We make it easy for you, here is a small guide to Poland to do it in a motorhome or camper van with everything you need to know.

Language and words you should know

Language

In Poland, Polish is spoken as an official language, a language that Spaniards find it difficult not only to pronounce, the mere fact of reading it is already a drama. Experts say that it is one of the most difficult languages ​​in the world. They have letters that we do not have, all including names are declined and there are up to 7 declensions and finally they join endless consonants without not a vowel in the middle.

English and German is the one spoken only in the most touristy places, but the truth is that it is little spoken compared to other European countries.

That is why we recommend that you download the Google Translator app and its Polish dictionary before going to Poland.

Words to know in Polish

SPANISH / POLISH / PRONUNCIATION

Thank you / Dziękuję / llinkuye (and if you want to thank not only you, then: "llinkuyeme" which is something like we thank you, everything is declined :)).
Good morning / Dzień dobry / Gin Dobre (sometimes colloquially they just say "Dobre" to greet you good morning)
Goodbye / Do widzenia / dobidzeña /

Yes / Tak / tak /
No / Nie / ñe

Enjoy! / Smacznego! / smachnego /

Kawa / kava / coffee
Water / Woda / wedding
No gas / Nie gaz / ñe gas
Wine / Wino / wine
Beer / Piwo / pivo / (if you want two or three beers you must decline and it says "piva", for four beers it is said in another way etc ... hehehe)
Ice Cream / Lody / lodi
Sinks / washcloth / washcloth

"Funny" words in Polish that you will learn quickly:

Dog in Polish is said "Feet"

Monk in Polish is said "Hen"

Road or highway in Polish is said "Drug"

Water is said in Polish "Wedding"

Yours in Polish is said "Fuck", so do not be scared if someone says "fuck me" it is a declined variant is not an indecent proposition hehehehehehehe

Lord in Polish is "Pan"

 
Population, regions and geography

Population 

The census amounts to almost 39 million inhabitants.

Area

312 6964 km2, the ninth largest country in Europe

 

Highest peak in Poland

The Rysy in the Tatra Mountains 2503 meters high.

Political geography: regions

Poland, with its capital in Warsaw is divided into 16 voivodeships or voivodeships (województwo), 380 districts (powiat) and 24787 municipalities (gmina).

The voivodeships, regions, are the following:

Poland regions map in motorhome

VoivodeshipCapital or Cities
In SpanishIn Polish 
Greater polandGreater PolandPoznan
Kuyavian and PomeranianKujawsko-PomorskieBydgoszcz / Toruń
Little polandLesserKrakow
LodzLodzLodz
Lower SilesiaLower SilesiaWroclaw
LublinLubelskieLublin
LubuszLubuszGorzów Wielkopolski / Zielona Góra
MazoviaMazowieckieWarsaw
OpoleOpoleOpole
PodlachiaPodlaskieBialystok
PomeranianPomeranianGdansk
SilesianSilesianKatowice
SubcarpathianPodkarpackie ProvinceRzeszów
Santa CruzswietokrzyskieKielce
Warmia and MasuriaWarmia-MazuryOlsztyn
Western pomeraniaWestSzczecin
Currency and prices

Currency

Zloty (PLN)

€ 1 = PLN 4,5

Currency exchange and commissions

The best option to make everything cheaper: payment by card

In most places in Poland you can pay with a card, they pay up to a beer with a card. That is why we recommend that you use whenever you can your card and paying in zlotys when asked by the datafano. This is how it will always be cheaper for you.

We have been using the Evo bank card for 15 years, with which you can withdraw money at all ATMs in Spain and the world without commissions (if they charge you it is because the ATM's bank charges it, it changes ATMs).

With the Evo card, we do not charge any commission for currency exchange when you use the credit card.

With other banks, you should take a good look at the issue of commissions to the currency exchange and to get money, they usually take between 3% to 1% the one that less.

Withdraw money at ATMs or exchange houses

 To withdraw money from ATMs in Poland, I recommend those of the PKO blue logo, they give the best change, the Santaders who give the worst change, they gave us a lot. In addition, at the ATM you always select the Cash Withdrawa optionl (best exchange guaranteed) so that it will be cheaper for you.

To change currency there are also Kantor offices from Poland is the one that gives the best change, they are giving about 4,40 for 1 Euro.

Prices

Prices in Poland are generally lower. Above all, it is noticeable in the restoration, museum tickets and entertainment venues. Gasoline and supermarkets are also slightly cheaper but pennies and maybe not so noticeable.

Some examples: 1 euro ice cream, 1 waffle € 1,80, a 1/2 liter beer: € 1,70; A plate of meat à la carte in a restaurant: from € 4 to € 6 and in an elegant or luxurious place at € 10 maximum, 1 kg of chicken breasts € 3 at the supermarket, museum tickets between € 2 to 5 (The great World Heritage attractions are more expensive but also cheaper than in Spain).

Documentation and health

Documentation 

If you are from the European Union

  • Valid DNI, also for minors
  • European sanitary card

And optionally, we recommend travel insurance to cover medical expenses since in Poland the European health card applies, but it has a co-payment and you also have to advance the money in many cases, and then request the return of the part in Spain. 

To avoid complications, we contract Iati Getaways, which is a travel insurance that also covers Covid and is special for motorhomes and campers since it covers theft inside the vehicle, liability and accident insurance for the pets we carry and even a replacement vehicle . I leave you here a 5% discount for those who hire him as Kucavana readers. click here! and they will apply the discount automatically.

Covid requirements

See the current measures always updated on the official page Re-Open UE

Typical meals

Typical Polish gastronomy

Polish gastronomy is a true delight forged between the modernity of its cities and the rural life of 40% of its population. You can find flavors of a great diversity, modern and creative cuisine but also traditional and that varies according to the region where you are.

On your trip to Poland by motorhome you will find very very good and very cheap restaurants. The usual thing is to eat from the menu (dishes are around € 3 to € 6 on average) and choose a starter and then a main, which are usually more than considerable in size or, as a friend says, they are grandmothers' rations. Just to tell you that many times we asked for the leftovers to take away, something that is very normal there, and that we ate and dined with a great meal. 

The typical dishes that you cannot miss:

  • Zurek Soup -> In Poland you will see soups of all kinds. You will observe soups even in the soup. Many go inside the bread, as something curious. The most typical is this Zurek, which is like a stew broth with garlic, sausages (kielbasa) and boiled eggs. But apart from this you will see soups of everything you can imagine, and sometimes as strange as some may seem to you, they are all delicious even in summer!
  • Rosól Soup -> Children's soup :). A broth with thin noodles.
  • Pierogis -> My favorite food, that before going to Poland I already made it in my kitchen. They are like a kind of empanadas made with soft pasta like those of Japanese gyozas and filled with many things. The most typical of potato or meat.
  • Kielbasas -> Sausages of all kinds. Normal and as sausage, spicy and milder. Spicy you have the krakowska or the wiejska or the mysliwska. 
  • Golonka -> Roasted knuckle
  • Kotlet schabowy -> Battered pork chops accompanied by fried cabbage and potatoes usually.
  • Bigos -> cooked like ours but with sauerkraut and sausages.
  • Dumplings -> Potato paste stuffed into sundries, usually a large meatball
  • Placki ziemniaczne -> French fry pancakes, many times they come with meat with sauce.
  • Golabki -> cabbage leaves stuffed with meat and stewed in a sauce.
  • Pulpety -> meatballs
  • Ryba smażona -> fried fish
  • Krokiety -> They are not croquettes as you might think, but crepes stuffed with meat or cabbage closed like a roll, breaded and fried.
  • Placek zbójnicki (or placek po węgiersku) -> Our favorite food. A goulash type beef stew inside a kind of potato pancake ... delicious! At La Guarida del Lobo it was the best we ate of the whole trip!

Typical snacks that you cannot miss:

  • Nalesniki -> Like cheese-filled crepes
  • Chleb -> the bread that is eaten with everything made with rye flour and a symbol of luck in Poland and that is usually put in restaurants with lard for you to spread if you want.
  • Ogórek -> pickled gherkins eaten all the time
  • Ob wargenek -> Bread donut sold as a snack.
  • Oscypek -> the famous sheep cheese with a peculiar flavor from the Polish mountains, which you will find in pierogis or in delicious cheesecakes (sernik).

Typical desserts and sweets that you cannot miss:

  • Papieska kremówka -> the cream-filled puff pastry cake that was Pope John Paul II's favorite
  • Sernik -> Cheesecake
  • Szarlotka -> Apple pie, which is usually served hot and with vanilla ice cream. Our favorite dessert.
  • Jagodzianka -> Bun stuffed with blueberries that is typical of summer, in winter they do not
  • Paczek or Paczusie ->  (pronounced "ponchki") Some buns stuffed with jam, the most typical of rose jam, very rich
Typical drinks

Typical drinks

The national drink is undoubtedly the beer (Piwo if it is one or remember if you order two or three Piwa). They have a thousand varieties of national beers and they serve you half a liter. Fortunately, the alcohol content is not very high. The most common brands are the Pearl, Tyskie or Lech. The ones we liked the most are the ones with a Goat and the Bison drawn, so surely easier to remember 😛

He too vodka National is a drink that no good Pole forgets after meals, in fact there is a debate between whether vodka is Polish or Russian, be careful what you are going to say to a Pole about it hehehe

On the other hand, if you like the wine, national production you will not find too much. On the contrary, the cider and in them you will find variety.

Finally, if you are coffee growers, you are in luck. Coffee (Kawa) you have something for all tastes and everywhere. My favorite was the "ice coffe with cream", that's how I asked for it in English and that's how they served me a glass of coffee with cream or vanilla ice cream or ice inside and generous and sweet cream on top, a delight, which I became fond of in Poland and that I will remember my whole life for sure.

Rules and tips for driving in Poland

Poland by motorhome: camper friendly country but with its peculiarities. Legislation and what you should know

Driving a motorhome in Poland

Driving on the roads of Poland It is easy but at the same time it can be somewhat tedious. Polish they drive like in SpainEven sometimes I would say that they are more polite than us, although they are rude and in a hurry there are everywhere. Now drivers are not the problem, there is something you need to know. The Poland's road infrastructures are at extreme, or they are excellent highways or they are roads, that if you suffer from your motorhome or camper, you can prepare yourself to suffer. There are a lot of minor and not-so-minor roads that are in pretty bad shape. Many are under construction and surely in a few years this will have improved a lot. Now, for the moment it is what it is. 

Most of the roads are patched, with holes and no hard shoulder or painted markings. They are not narrow, nor do they normally have steep slopes, but they are in poor condition. They are roads that for a motorhome make you have to go very slowly if you do not want to get home without a motorhome. To do 60 km, think that it will take at least an hour, except you go from big cities to big cities where there are good highways and highways (but with very very minimal payments, the most we have paid have been 3 euros) of three lanes and new ones.

A trick: do not trust the GPS, take a good look at google maps and if you see a main road or highway pull for it, even if it is more kilometers and turn more.

But above all, driving on Polish roads implies respecting the country's highway code:

Speed ​​limits on highways:

  • Urbanized areas - up to 50 km / h (60 km / h after 23:00)
  • Out of town - up to 90 km / h
  • Urban helmet - up to 20 km / h
  • Fast dual carriageway - up to 110 km / h
  • On fast single carriageway - up to 100 km / h
  • Dual carriageway with at least two lanes in each direction - up to 100 km / h

Obligations on the road that you must take into account:

  • Mandatory to always circulate with the lights on
  • The amount of alcohol allowed in the driver's blood is 0,2 mg / l
  • If you are a motorhome of more than 3500 kg you must have the active TOLL road to circulate on Polish roads.

    viaTOLL is an electronic road use charging system in Poland. Further information:  http://www.viatoll.pl/en/home

Overnight in a motorhome or camper in Poland

Stay overnight and do motorhome or van services in Poland

If the vehicle is well parked and without camping the overnight stay is allowed as a general rule throughout the countryWe have not seen any sign of prohibited motorhomes in the whole trip. However, in some natural parks or coastal areas the stay of the vehicle at night may be restricted and they put chains closing the accesses.

Although, remember, power staying overnight does not give you the right to camp on your own, something that we explain below and that is prohibited throughout Poland.

To spend the night, apart from being able to do it in any parking lot, you have enough private motorhome and camping areas that are cheap there. In these places, you can also camp. 

As they do not exist in Poland they are free municipal motorhome areas as we know them in southern Europe.

In addition, you should know that the camper areas (as there they call motorhomes, vans or any home vehicle) many times they do not have emptying services gray and / or black water. And even in some very basic campsites, more in the south of the country, it also happened to us that they did not have gray casts.

Trick solution for services: obviously search areas and campsites with all services and if we have nothing nearby, look for a Car wash (on the map we leave you some point) or a motorway service area with the sign "wc bus" and there gray and black drains where the buses. Above all, never ever pour water where you should not, remember that it is our future as a collective that we play for ourselves wherever we go.

Regulations on camping in Poland

Camping in a motorhome or camper in Poland

La wild camping is not allowed, Same as in spain. Camping is in fact prohibited and strictly controlled, especially in nature reserves and on the coast. If the police catch you camping, you can be fined up to € 120. As in Spain, we ask you to comply with the rules and never ever camp outside a campsite or private motorhome area or specifically regulated camping areas, which are the only places that allow it.

We remind you that camping is taking out an awning, taking out a table and chairs or taking out any element of your vehicle that causes it to exceed its perimeter.

For this, in Poland you are in luck, you have many private campsites and camper parks at a very good price. One good thing about Poland are the Prices of its campsites that average around € 15-20 per night for 2 adults + 2 children + 1 dog + 1 motorhome.

Official tourism website of Poland

Poland Tourism Website:

https://www.polonia.travel/es

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