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Narciarz na nartach biegowych podczas zimowej jazdy na leśnej ścieżce. Wokół ścieżki las pokryty śniegiem.       Narciarz na nartach biegowych podczas zimowej jazdy na leśnej ścieżce. Wokół ścieżki las pokryty śniegiem.

Winter for the adventurous in Warmia and Masuria

Warmia and Masuria in winter are not only about charming landscapes but also excellent conditions for sports played on snow, ice and… water, offering a boost of adrenaline. If you are an enthusiast of adventures, we have a handful of suggestions for spending winter time actively in the region. Everyone is sure to find something they enjoy: winter swimming, ice diving, winter kayaking, leisurely ice skating or speeding along the ice on boats at speeds of up to 100 km/h.

Winter swimming

The Land of a Thousand Lakes is a paradise for lovers of outdoor bathing in winter. However, it should be noted that the name given to the region does not fully reflect reality. In Masuria alone, you can count about 2,600 lakes, and if we add to this the waters in Warmia and other areas that are part of the province, it turns out that there are nearly 3,000 lakes. And then there are also rivers which winter swimming aficionados are also eager to dive into. If you have not tried winter swimming yet, it is a good idea to take advantage of the experience of winter swimmers who are members of clubs that operate in many localities of the region. These include:
Kąpiący się Zimą – Morsy Olsztyn
Olsztyński Klub Morsów Iglo
Elbląskie Morsy
Ełcki Klub Morsów Arktyka
Ełckie Morsy Pogodoodporni
Giżycki Klub Morsów Zimny Ptak
Biskupieckie Morsy
Bartoszycki Klub Morsów Polar

Zdjęcie przedstawia młodego mężczyznę morsującego w przeręblu. Dookoła prostokąta z wodą leży lód a na nim biały śnieg. Drzewa wkoło nie mają liści.

Winter swimming does not require specialised personal equipment, although professionals advise to get protective shoes. Of course, if the lake is covered with ice, you will need a suitable device to cut an air hole. Although it is possible to go winter swimming without special physical preparation, it is worth consulting a doctor to confirm that there are no health contraindications for winter baths.

Zdjęcie pokazuje nurka będącego pod wodą. Mężczyzna ubrany w czarny strój, wraz z całym sprzętem niezbędnym do schodzenia pod wodę.

Ice diving

The winter life of the Masurian lakes is a marvel thanks to many phenomena — an unusual play of light under the icy surface, touching silence as well as visibility reaching up to 12 m in some lakes. Enthusiasts of winter diving particularly like the following lakes: Mamry, Niegocin, Kisajno, Wuksniki (the deepest in the region), Leleskie and Tałty. More information about ice diving can be found, among others, in the Mazurskie Centrum Nurkowe.

Cruising on ice

You can sail both in summer and winter. As soon as ice covers the lakes, speed and adrenaline lovers set sail. Mikołajki, Mrągowo and Giżycko are main ports of call for ice sailors. Ice yachts can reach speeds of over 100 km/h, so it is often said that they “glide” on ice. If you want to try your hand at this sport, then we recommend, for example, the Gospoda pod Czarnym Łabędziem (the Black Swan Inn), where you can find instructors and rent the necessary equipment. It is worth taking a ski suit or warm, waterproof trousers and a jacket, waterproof shoes, warm socks and gloves, a hat, goggles, helmet and… high spirits.

Zdjęcie przedstawia bojery na zamarzniętym jeziorze. Kolor jeziora zlewa się z kolorem błękitnego nieba.
Zadowolona rodzina, mama, tata i kilkuletnie dziecko podczas jazdy na łyżwach po zamarźniętym stawie, wokół którego rozpościera się las.

Ice skating

As entertainment for the whole family, we recommend ice skating on artificial ice rinks because when winter does not show its frosty face, the ice on the lakes does not ensure safety when spinning pirouettes. So where do you go for ice skating?
An all-year-round ice rink can be found at the Gołębiewski Hotel in Mikołajki
Indoor ice rink in Elbląg
Indoor ice rink in the Mazurskie Centrum Sportów Lodowych in Giżycku
Indoor ice rink  on Kurza Góra near Nowe Miast Lubawskie
Covered ice rink in Bartoszyce 
Ice rinks in Olsztynie (by the Ukiel lake and at Jeziołowicza St.)
Municipal ice rink in Iława
Ice rink in Mrągowo
Municipal ice rink in Kętrzyn
Ice rink in Ełk

Winter in a kayak

If you are not afraid of frost and icy water, try your hand at winter kayaking. In Warmia and Masuria, such river rafting has been organised for years in the Łyna, Pisa and Ełk rivers, among others. The last of the three boasts a tradition going back more than 40 years. It is also worth noting the kayaking route down Łaźna Struga (the middle section of the Elk River) organised by Folwark Łękuk (Łękuk Farm). In winter, you can also go kayaking in Krutynia, the queen of Masurian rivers. Renting equipment and organising kayaking trips are offered by Stanica Wodna (Riverside Hostel) in Krutyń, among others.

Fot. Folwark Łekuk 

As you can see, blissful peace with tea by the fireplace is not the only thing winter in Warmia and Masuria has to offer as it also provides the opportunity to experience unforgettable adventures surrounded by beautiful nature. Adventures that are sometimes – literally – blood-chilling. So see you on the winter trails of Warmia and Masuria!

Zdjęcie przedstawia pomnik z brązu Mikołaja Kopernika, który stoi na olsztyńskim starym mieście.

On the trail with Copernicus - the places where the great astronomer lived and worked

This trail leads through unique places. It's nearly 300 km of exciting journey in the footsteps of great discoveries that have changed the perception of the universe forever.

Find out more
Teleskop w Olsztyńskim Obserwatorium Astronomicznym.

Gaze at the sky with Copernicus

Nicolaus Copernicus was a great astronomer, who "stopped the sun and moved the Earth." Even though he lived five centuries ago, he continues to generate a lot of interest to this day. We still care for the legacy of his life and work. Copernicus' connections with the region of Warmia and Masuria (he lived and worked in Warmia for nearly 40 years) are the motivation behind the creation of local research centers and tourist attractions.

Find out more
Samotna żaglówka pływającą po spokojnym mazurskim jeziorze.

10 things you should know about Warmia and Masuria

You probably know a lot about Warmia and Masuria. However, we will try to present you 10 interesting facts about this region that are not so obvious.

Find out more
Wybacz ale w tak niskiej rozdzielczości nie jesteśmy w stanie pokazać piękna Warmi i Mazur