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Through Podhale in search of "oscypek"

Through Podhale in search of "oscypek"

For centuries, the highlanders in the Podhale have pastured sheep on grazing lands, situated high up in the mountains. Today, one of the symbols of the Podhale, and the most famous regional delicacy is oscypek, i.e. a smoked, hard sheep’s cheese.
There is a special Oscypek Route which leads through the Podhale. It enables you to visit “bacówki” (shepherd’s huts) in which local specialties are produced, including oscypek, a spicy “bryndza” (ewe’s milk cheese) and other delicacies made of sheep’s milk.
In the surroundings of Zakopane it is worth going for a walk to the picturesque valleys of the Tatra Mountains: Kościeliska and Chochołowska. In both of them you will find huts producing oscypek, and along the way you can admire the landscape of the limestone Western Tatras. Oscypek is also produced in Gorce. This mountain range, which includes Gorczański National Park, is rarely visited by the tourists, while a beautiful, extensive Hala Długa (Long Pasture) at the foot of Turbacz (1310m asl) is one of the places where a shepherd hut producing oscypek can be found.
You can climb it from Kowaniec (district of Nowy Targ) or from Łopuszna village, which is a less attended trail. In Łopuszna it is also worth seeing a wooden church from the second half of the 15th century, and an 18th century manor house of the Tetmajer family, now housing an interesting Museum of Gentry Culture.

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