In the third installment of a family ecotourism series covering Ecotourism in Northern Europe, I invite you to appreciate the wonder of Gdansk family travel. A coastal city on the Baltic Sea, Gdansk combined with the rest of its “tri-city” Polish neighbors, Gdynia and Sopot, features a number of lakes and forests; lots of recreational activities including kayaking, canoeing and hiking; and spa and health rejuvenation vacations all with a conscious eye toward environmental preservation. Although 12 miles separates the “tri-city” neighbors, car and bus transportation is a bit difficult due to a lack of road infrastructure – a legacy from the days of Soviet rule. A better alternative is the electric train that runs frequently through the “tri-city” neighbors and only takes 35 minutes.
Once within Gdansk, there are also plenty of trams that reach all corners of the city.
Gdansk Family Travel Ecotourism Activities
- Partake in a kayak tour around Gdansk that takes you through the natural as well as some man-made water routes of the city. Take the route through the sightseeing and historical parts of Motlawa and Oplyw Motlawy and find yourself in beautiful natural surroundings right at the center of the city. You will be surprised to see such a variety of birds among the historical Gdansk fortifications.
- Although Gdynia is the youngest of the three “tri-cities” and an industry shipyard city, it offers vast green areas a marina, and an aquarium that emphasizes conservation.
- Nearly 30 percent of Poland is protected land in the form of national parks, nature reserves, and landscape parks. Although not within the city limits of Gdansk, Slowinski Park, which is one of Poland’s 23 national parks, is approximately 100 miles due west of the “tri-city” and offers many ecotourist activities. Registered both on the UNESCO list of World Biosphere Reserves and the International Ramsar Convention of protected waterways, the main attraction of the park, which stretches for 21 miles along the Baltic coast, is the shifting dunes that reach 140 feet high. Hiking routes as well as cycling paths are well marked and nature enthusiasts can also enjoy the nearby lakes that are replete with birdlife as well as plentiful beaches and even a mini-desert.