Plough the slopes while breathing in fresh mountain air all day long, then after the sun goes down take a dip in a thermal pool and enjoy some regional specialties before treating your weary body to a Thai massage. That’s how a typical day might go if you decide to spend your winter holiday in the Beskids in the northeast corner of the Czech Republic. This mountain range, which is known for its romantic peaks, hillside timbered cottages, distinctive dialect and the hospitality of its people, is a locale that has earned its place on the map of ideal winter destinations.
The massive bulwark of the Beskids offers some of Moravia’s most beautiful scenery. But the Beskid hillsides are not just nature’s adornment: they are laced with kilometres of slopes which become a perfect skier’s paradise every winter. The most renowned resort is Pustevny, where you can choose from downhill runs of all levels of difficulty. Crowning the hilltop are enchanting wooden buildings designed by the famous architect Dušan Jurkovič in the unique style known as Wallachian Art Nouveau. Be sure not to miss an ascent to the mythical mountain of Radhošť, which for centuries has been connected with the worship of the pagan god Radegast. Excellent conditions for downhill skiing can be found at the Bílá Ski Park, which will delight snowboarders, too. You can enjoy a relaxed atmosphere, peaceful surroundings and beautiful views also at smaller resorts such as Kohútka, Soláň, Troják and Razula.
A cross-country trek through a snowy landscape
You can experience the beauty of Beskid nature perhaps best of all on cross-country skis. Hop on the well-known Hostýn and Beskydy cross-country routes, which lead through its most beautiful areas. On cross-country skis you can climb all the way up to the highest point in the Beskid range, Lysá Mountain at 1,324 metres. Do not forget to bring your camera, because the views from up here will take your breath away. Prepared trails also await you in the areas around Ostravice, Bílá, Staré Hamry and Ondřejník.
The Beskids will literally lift you up
Are your teeth chattering from the cold and your body pleasantly tired from a long day of exercise in the fresh air? Warm yourself up at one of the region’s wellness facilities! For instance, you can immerse yourself in the thermal pool with warm salt water at the Hotel Horal in Velké Karlovice, which due to its high mineral content is also beneficial for your health. A wonderful sense of relaxation also awaits you at the Miura Hotel in Čeladná, where you can try an exciting form of relaxation: a levitation bath, which produces a feeling of weightlessness. You can also cross-country ski across the local golf course and enjoy some beautiful views of the surrounding mountain peaks.
Experience an ideal holiday
Is there anything still needed to complete a perfect holiday? Oh yes, the excellent local cuisine! You can sample delicious Beskid fare at the Sepetná mountain hotel in Ostravice, where you simply must taste the bryndzové halušky (small dumplings with sheep’s cheese and bacon) or the saddle of venison. After a delicious meal you can pamper yourself in the local relaxation centre. Do not forget to try Wallachian sausages and frgále – large circular pastries spread with cream cheese, poppy seeds, plum jam, or a spread made from dried pears. You must also taste some homemade slivovice – this plum distillate will warm you through and through! You should be able to find these specialties in any decent Wallachian pub.