Bieszczady County

Bieszczady County (Pol. powiat bieszczadzki) is one of 21 land counties in Subcarpathian Voivodeship, Poland. The county covers an area of 1182.1 km², its total population is 163,000 people, the population density is 141.8 p/km². The county's administrative centre is Ustrzyki Dolne. Bieszczady County was formed on January 1, 1999 as a result of an administrative reform.

The ranges of Polish Beskids start on the territory of the county by the western spurs of Ukrainian Carpathians. Beskids or Bieszchady Mountains is a kind of Polish "Wild West" myth, which has been formed for decades in the minds of average Polish and tourists who have visited Subcarpathian Voivodeship. Nowadays these territories are not that wild as before, however they generally retained their original look which attracts many tourists to the region.

Polish Bieszchady are located on the highest, north-western ridge of the Eastern Carpathians. Only their western part, Western Bieszczady, are located on the territory of Bieszczady County in Poland. They stretch from Uzsok Pass (853 m above sea level) to the east and to Łupków Pass (640 m above sea level) to the west. The largest part of its territory belongs to Bieszczady National Park and unofficially it is called "Zielony róg" of Poland. The highest peaks of Bieszczady Mountains are located here: Tarnica (1346 m), Kremin (1355 m), Bukowska (1321 m), Rozpysanec (1273 m). In the west Bieszchady border with Low Beskids, the lowest and longest part of Carpathian meadows, in the east along the territory of Ukraine Ukrainian Carpathians stretch.

Almost all Bieszczady Mountains embrace the territories which are protected on the legislative level: Bieszczady National Park, Sana Valley Landscape Park and Cisna-Wetlina Landscape Park. In 1992, as based on the unique mountain landscapes of this territory, the International Biosphere Reserve "Eastern Carpathians" was created, it was enlisted into UNESCO World Heritage List. Bieszczady National Park covers the area of 29,200 hectares and is considered to be one of the biggest in Poland. The nature of the protected area impresses by its diversity. There are many rare plant species, wild mammals, including bisons, bears, deers, woolves, lynxes, wild cats, large birds of prey, such as golden eagle, small spotted eagles. Tourists are attracted here by extensive mountain meadows that are located at an altitude of 1150 m above sea level.

For those who enjoy alpine skiing there are such sport and tourism centres on the territory of Bieszczady County:

Worth seeing:

Sacred architecture and cemeteries

  • St. Michael the Archangel Catholic church (1844), Brzegi Doln
  • St. Michael the Archangel Catholic church (1901), Bystre
  • Greek-Catholic church of Virgin Mary's Birth (1920), Wojtkiw
  • Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Wooden Catholic church (1926), Hoszowczyk
  • St. Nicholas wooden Catholic church (1939), Goszow
  • Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary wooden Catholic church (1830), Żłobek
  • Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary wooden Catholic church (1794), Krościenko
  • Greek-Catholic church of Virgin Mary's Birth (1832), Liskowate
  • Jewish Cemetery (XVIIIth century), Lutowiska
  • Ruins of the Synagogue (XIXth century), Lutowiska
  • St. John the Baptist wooden Catholic church (1863), Michniowiec
  • Catholic church of St. Nicholas (1852), Rabe
  • Catholic church of St. Nicholas (1790), Poljana
  • Catholic church dedicated to the Care of the Holy Virgin Mary (XVIIIth century), Równia
  • St. Michael the Archangel Catholic church (1791), Smolník
  • Jewish cemetery (XVIIIth century), Ustrzyki Dolne
  • Church of the Ascension of the Blessed Virgin Mary (1743), Ustrzyki Dolne
  • Catholic church of St. Nicholas (1904-1906), Chmiel
  • Exaltation of the Holy Cross wooden Catholic church (1834), Czarna

Other architectural and historical sights

  • Wooden house (XIX-XXth centuries), Lutowiska
  • Railway station (1872), Ustrzyki Dolne

Sights of nature and protected areas

  • Bieszczady National Park, Ustrzyki Górne
  • Góry Słonne landscape park

Hotels, hostels, campings, spa resorts