Hiking trip in the Holy Cross Mountains

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Practical Information

  • Detailed Information
  • Tourist opinions
  • Detailed InformationZwińRozwiń
  • General
    • Object type:
    • Difficulty of the route:
    • Route route:
    • Locations on the route:
      Św. Katarzyna, Kakonin, Huta Szkalana, Św. Krzyż, Nowa Słupia
    • Attractions on the route:
      Convent and Museum of Minerals and Fossilis in Święta Katarzyna, Boulder Fields, timber cottage in Kakonin, Monastery Complex in Święty Krzyż, Boulder Fields, Nature-Forest Exhibition of the Świętokrzyski National park, Museum of Ancient Metallurgy in Now
    • Route length:
      20 km
  • Location
    • Tourist region:
      Kielce Region
  • Keeper of the trail
    • Organizer name:
      Świętokrzyski PTTK Branch in Kielce
    • Organizer data:
      25-007 Kielce, ul. Sienkiewicza 29
    • Phone:
      41 344 77 43
    • fax:
      41 344 59 14
    • E-mail:
    • Website:
    • Tourist opinionsZwińRozwiń

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    Holy Cross Mountains, with its rich natural advantages which distinguish this region from other provinces, is an ideal place for hiking, not only for professionals, but also for all nature lovers. This is a region of unconverted landscape conditions, where everybody can rest thanks to clean air.


    The value of nature and the need to protect precious natural environment determined creation of five landscape parks: Cisowsko-Orłowiński, Chęcińsko-Kielecki, Suchedniowsko-Oblęgorski, Sieradowicki and Jeleniowski. All forests hide gentle ridges and rocky outcrops of rock exploitation of raw materials, which show power, mystery and magic of these mountains. Terrain and picturesqueness gives every walker, whether advanced or just beginning, an unforgettable experience. It provides opportunity to admire the magnificent views. A collector of fossils, and a lover of nature will be able to encounter on the route specimens have not found anywhere else. In many places one can encounter geological shield, which is called "book of the earth", to help read and understand history of the planet. Just close your eyes and try to imagine life millions of years ago, when dinosaurs stepped on the earth. Traveling on foot through the region, one can feel the spirit of ancient times, and experience the beauty and advantages of the site, which offers respite and rest for nerves. Holy Cross Mountains are a paradise for hikers: they can choose from countless kilometers of trials, including comfortable and demanding routes. Each place is worth a visit because the area is like never ending story of nature and legends.

    photo A. Drzewiecka

    One of the most beautiful and interesting hiking trail starts in Kielce. Tour starts  from the old town and its industrial district, Białogon, where 200 years a factory was created as an idea of priest Stanislaw Staszic. To commemorate this event, timber church of Zakopane style was funded by the local population in the 20th  century. Our first stop on the route is The  Karczówka Reserve, a monastery hill situated on the route to Krakow. Monastery emerges from above surrounding trees, demonstrating its dignity and mystery. The complex was founded as a vote by Bishop Marcin Szyszkowski in 1622. Constructed with simple geometric shapes monastery is characterized by Baroque or Rococo style. One of the most interesting element is a statue of miners’ patron Saint Barbara, made from unusual materials such as lead ore, galena. From the observation deck there is a splendid panorama of the surroundings. And now turn to explore a more contemporary to us, but very interesting history. It is at nearby Mount Brusznia. The high cross commemorates the first meeting during the January Uprising (1863). Visitor, close your eyes and try to imagine those moments.


    Lots of important historical events of our country began on Holy Cross Land ... After the spiritual and aesthetic emotions one goes through the route that will lead us to Paradise Cave. It is the largest and most beautiful cave of the region, in which one can admire the grandeur of geological processes. Numerous stalactites, stalagmites make an impression and show the power of the cave, which according to geologists, began to emerge 100 000 years ago. After descending the hill for a short distance, one comes to Zygmuntówka marmur quarry. A column of Zygmunt III Waza in Warsaw was made of this marmur in the 18th century. After a few kilometers walk, one enters into a picturesque mountain area of the Zelejowa Reserve. There is a long ridge of rock more than 1.5 km. The top of the hill is traversed by numerous rocks, which document the presence of the rich tradition of ore mining in this area. The reserve is also a great place for geology lovers. The final stage of the journey is Chęciny town famous for castle, situated on the hill. Built around 1300, serving in the 14th  century as one of the strongest fortresses, was the seat of the royal family members. It has been never conquered by force, however, today it is a permanent ruin. Castle Hill (360 m) is another place on our route, from which one can admire panorama of the surrounding mountains. At this point, the red trail ends. But this is obviously not the end of experience.

    photo A. Drzewiecka

    For those in need of more effort on the track, after which it could be a break in the walls of the monastery, one can  traverse Święta Katarzyna - Holy Cross distance. The route length of 20.5 km, passing through Holy Cross National Park, is one of the most representative routes in the region, which shows the effects of nature and objects of worship, so important to the history and development of the Świetokrzyskie. The route starts in Swięta Katarzyna. The village is an important point on the Swietokrzyskie Literary Trail map- at the entrance to Łysica, can be found signs, etched on the wall by Stefan Żeromski, famous Polish writer. In the village there is also a Gallery of Minerals and Fossils, which invites all the interested to admire nearby stone treatment grindery. First mentions of Świeta Katarzyna, appeared at the end of the 14th, where according to applications, Wacławek, a knight of Wladysław Jagiello, built in this place a wooden church of Saint Katarzyna. Entering the forest, one comes across a spring and chapel of Saint Franciszek. This confluence of water, some people attribute a therapeutic value - perhaps is the power of faith, or merit of  located underground volcano. Our first goal is a summit Łysica - 612 m. Quite steep slope approximately 2.5 km in length can be overcome in about an hour. Being almost at the end, one can stop and see the boulder fields, known from the descriptions contained in school textbooks. Summit of the oldest mountains in Poland has, actually, two peaks. East, a higher peak (612 m), called Agate Rock or Zamczysko, is topped with a cross from 1930Rewarding for crossing the distance is a walk down through the Forest, to the  Saint Mikołaj Pass.

    photo A. Drzewiecka

    Route from Łysica to the Pass can be overcome in less than an hour. This place was crossed by two ways from nearby cities: Kakonin and Wola Szczygiełkowa. It was a dangerous place and, therefore, a statue of Saint Mikołaj was situated here. This is a patron of travelers, as well as, defender against wild animals. From here the route starts to lead down (blue and red trails.) After about 30 minutes to reach the village Kakonin, which according to legend, Kak robbed the rich and gave their money to the poor. There is also the Board of a Good Taste of Łysogórska Land and historic 19th century cottage, which is under the care of the Museum of Kielce Countryside. Walking along the edge of National Park, one reaches Huta Szklana, which is located in the lower, called Hucka Pass. In this area there are many places where there is a word called Huta (Ironworks). This follows from the fact that this region was a medieval industrial center - one of the largest in Europe. The road at this stage leads along the red trail towards the second highest peak of Holy Cross Mountains - Bald Mountain (also known as Łysiec).

    The route runs through the forest along an asphalt road. The history of the monastery founded in the 11th century, abounds in numerous events. Over the centuries, the complex has been burned twice, survived the invasions by the Swedes, it served as a prison and concentration camp for nearly six thousand Soviet prisoners. It is now one of the most interesting and popular places to visit in the region.  The special route has been prepared for visitors. It includes a visit to the monastery cloisters, crypt, museum and a church missionary. At almost the very top, one turns left towards the viewpoint with a magnificent view of the forest, ended and the panorama of the region. Visiting Holly Cross complex, one can visit the exhibition of natural-forest exhibition, prepared by the Directorate of Holy Cross Mountains National Park.

    The Royal Route brings us to Nowa Słupia. This village was in ancient times one of the largest centers of smelting iron in this part of Europe. To protect the historical value of this place, the Museum of Ancient Metallurgy of Holy Cross Mountains was established. Today smelting traditions are reminded at the annual “Dymarki”. Nowa Słupia is famous for legendary stone pilgrim Emeric, Facing the Holy Cross, he repents  for his pride and moves to the top rate of one grain of sand per year. When he will reach the summit, the world will end.
    Return from the journey, one can choose the convenient transport connections, in the direction of Ostrowiec Swietokrzyski, Kielce and Starachowice.