Situated in the north of Slovakia close to the border this park covers more than 50,000ha and adjoins the Polish National Park of the same name.
A popular area with climbers and walkers in summer and skiers in winter this park includes the High Tatra and Belanske Tatry ranges and much of the habitat is pine and spruce forest. The dramatic scenery of the higher areas (maximum 2,655m) includes isolated tarns and rugged cliffs with many boulder-strewn subalpine meadows and some of the high peaks can be reached by cable car from the resort villages.
Lower down there are mixed woodlands, deep valleys and much cultivated land around settlements.
The birds are typical of a central European mid-high mountain area with Wallcreeper, Alpine Accentor and Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush. The forests have Spotted Nutcracker, Crested Tit and various warblers, woodpeckers including White-backed Woodpecker, Middle Spotted Woodpecker and Three-toed Woodpecker and owls including Eurasian Eagle Owl, Eurasian Pygmy Owl and Tengmalm's Owl, probably also Ural Owl.
Raptors are not well-represented but species such as Lesser Spotted Eagle and Golden Eagle can be seen. In lower areas there are storks, Corn Crake and a variety of passerines including Wood Lark, Red-breasted Flycatcher and Common Rosefinch.
Birds you can see here include:
Black Stork, White Stork, European Honey Buzzard, Common Buzzard, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Golden Eagle, Common Kestrel, Peregrine Falcon, Hazel Grouse, Black Grouse, Western Capercaillie, Corn Crake, European Turtle Dove, Eurasian Eagle Owl, Eurasian Pygmy Owl, Ural Owl, Tengmalm's Owl, European Nightjar, Common Swift, Common Kingfisher, Eurasian Hoopoe, Grey-headed Woodpecker, Black Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, White-backed Woodpecker, Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Three-toed Woodpecker, Crested Lark, Wood Lark, Tree Pipit, Water Pipit, Grey Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, Common Wren, Common Dipper, Alpine Accentor, Eurasian Robin, Whinchat, European Stonechat, Black Redstart, Common Redstart, Northern Wheatear, Rufous-tailed Rock Thrush, Ring Ouzel, Eurasian Blackbird, Fieldfare, Song Thrush, Lesser Whitethroat, Blackcap, Wood Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Goldcrest, Common Firecrest, Red-breasted Flycatcher, Willow Tit, Crested Tit, Coal Tit, Great Tit, Wallcreeper, Common Treecreeper, Red-backed Shrike, Great Grey Shrike, Common Jay, Spotted Nutcracker, Northern Raven, Chaffinch, Eurasian Siskin, Northern Redpoll, Common Rosefinch, Rock Bunting
History and Use
Areas of Interest
Access and Facilities
The closest major town to the park is Poprad which has an airport and the area is well-served by public transport.
The numerous villages in these mountains have plentiful accommodation ranging from campsites to hotels.
The area is very popular with skiers in winter and walkers in summer and so the area is geared up for tourists. There are cable cars and chairlifts up the more popular slopes and the higher and more remote mountain areas have well-stocked refuge huts.
Content and images originally posted by Steve