Summer and winter holiday in the Tatras
The Tatra National Park (TANAP in short) is the oldest of nine national parks in Slovakia. It is located in the mountain range called the Tatras, in the north of Slovakia, near the Slovak-Polish border. On the Polish side, the national park has a smaller “brother” – Tatrzański Park Narodowy.
The Tatra National Park stretches on an area of 738 km², its buffer zone occupies 307.03 km², which makes 1045.03 km² in total. There are more than 600 km of tourist trails and 16 marked and maintained cycle routes in the park. The highest peaks of Slovakia can be found here, including Mt. Gerlachovský štít (2,655 m) – ranked one in the list. The national park is significant due to its manifold flora and fauna with various endemic species including Tatra chamois and marmots.
Almost two thirds of the park are covered with forests, mainly spruce and fir trees. The most common species include the Norway spruce, Scots pine, Swiss pine, European larch and dwarf mountain pine. Broad-leaved trees, mainly maple trees, grow mainly in the Belianske Tatra Mts. There are more than 1,300 vascular plants growing in the national park, including 57 endemic species that only occur in the Carpathians, 41 in the Western Tatras and 37 in the Tatras. Significant endemic species include Erysimum wahlenbergii, Cochlearia tatrae, Erigeron hungaricus and others.
There are 155 bird species, 42 mammal species, 8 reptile species, 3 amphibian species and many invertebrates living in the national park. The mammals include e.g. the brown bear, Tatra marmot and Eurasian lynx.