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When is the best time to have a holiday in the Carpathians?

08 June 2021

When is the best time to travel to the Carpathians? This question is often brought up by those who have never been to the mountains and are planning their first trip there. Experienced travelers know that Ukrainian Carpathians are beautiful at any time of the year – the trip will provide the best experience at any season. The main thing is to decide what you expect from your vacation: do you want to explore natural attractions or enjoy extreme skiing on the slopes?

Spring vocation: when to go to the Carpathians, what to do, and what to see

When spring comes, nature wakes up and the mountains come to life. Keep in mind that March and early April in the highlands are full-featured winter months. If you want to enjoy the gentle sun, flowering meadows, and birdsong, then the end of April is the earliest time recommended. Fresh breeze with a touch of young pine and first flower scents, rumbling waterfalls and murmuring forest streams create an incredible romantic mood and fill you with energy.

An incredible wonder of Transcarpathian nature awaits you in the Kirishi tract. Here you will see the famous Valley of Daffodils. It is located at an altitude of 2,000m and considered to be one of the Carpathian miracles. In May, 257 hectares of plains are covered with a flowering carpet of more than 400 species of wild plants, some of which are included in the Red Book of Ukraine. It is the largest wild bloom of daffodils. You can admire the flowers and take memorable photos from special viewing decks.

One of the main reasons why extreme sports enthusiasts go to the Carpathians in the spring is one-day and multiple-day mountain river rafting tours. Rafting on kayaks and inflatable rafts along the Prut, Tisa, Lomnytsia rivers, or the rampant Cheremosh is an ideal option for active rest and a test of courage. Even beginners can participate in the rafting, but only in a team with professional instructors. Rafting clubs in the Carpathians provide tourists with all the necessary equipment. They give clear instructions and offer routes that match your training level. 

Spring is also the perfect season for rock climbing. The Dovbush Rocks near Yaremche are a real magnet for lovers of steep stone slabs. They vary in shape and height and used for training and competitions combined with routes of different difficulty degrees. The rock-cave complex is surrounded by a beech-spruce forest. The camping site offers an option to pitch a tent and relax by the fire after conquering the massif.

The must-see spring tour is a trip to the Carpathian waterfalls. In spring, they are supplied by melting snows and become especially water-abundant. Small, large, mighty, and unstoppable – the rushing streams bring the waters down from the peaks, foundering on the rocks and roaring all over the area. The largest and most picturesque ones include the Maniava Waterfall, Zhenetsʹkyy Huk, Shypit, Hoverlyanske Falls, Probiy Waterfall.  

The Carpathians in summer: popular destinations

When is the best time to go to the Carpathians in the summer? There is only one answer: any time from July 1 to August 31! Summer in the mountains starts later, so June is usually rainy and unpredictable. The weather changes in the twinkling of an eye – it warms you with the gentle sun and forces you to put on a windbreaker in a few moments. The mid-season is rich in warm and dry days that are favorable for tours, wildlife attractions exploration, and climbing mountain peaks.

Cycling tours are a popular summer leisure activity. There are many cycling routes in the mountains. You can go on a trip by yourself or join a multi-day cycling tour around Hutsulʹshchyna or Bukovina organized by instructors. Such tours include Velo Tustan, From Prut to Cheremosh, 7 Legends of Transcarpathia, and others, with overnight stays in tents and hiking in the mountains.

Do you want to see valleys and mountain ranges from under the clouds? Fly with a paraglider. This extreme activity is offered by many Carpathian resorts, including Rakhiv, Slavs’ke, and Tatariv. The minutes spent in the air will surely give vivid emotions and an unforgettable experience.

When is the best time to go to Bukovel? It is most certainly the end of July. Famous for its ski slopes in winter,  the famous resort turns into a beach holiday paradise in summer. Landscaped beaches of Lake Molodosti – the largest artificial water body in Ukraine – are the perfect spot for sunbathing and water activities. Jet skis, catamarans, kayaks, water skis, inflatable slides, and other leisure-time entertainment delight children and adults. You can take your ease for a while in the sunshine on a soft trestle bed or a wooden deck chair next to the water. You can have a delicious lunch in a cafe or restaurant on the beach, arrange a memorable photo session and enjoy a high-speed trolley ride over the lake.

Off-road driving on the Makovytsia Mountain is real fun for extreme entertainment enthusiasts. Fans of outdoor activities and thrills are offered to drive through the mountain landscapes on real off-road vehicles. Having reached the shepherd’s hut, don’t forget to taste feta cheese, budz, vurda, and other types of traditional Carpathian cheeses made from sheep’s milk. You can also enjoy the Hutsul cuisine cooked for you by the welcoming hosts.

August in the mountains is a season of “quiet hunting” for mushrooms and berries. You can always find something to eat right from the bush. Ripe raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, as well as milk mushrooms, boletus mushrooms, honey mushrooms, russules, and other wild delicacies can be picked with your own hands in every forest.

Off-season in the mountains: when is the best time to go to the Carpathians in the fall

The Carpathian autumn amazes with a riot of natural colors and evokes a pleasant melancholy. The slopes painted with crimson, gold, and emerald shades against the bright blue sky mesmerize and charm.

As a rule, there are not many tourists in the mountains at this time, so you can enjoy a relaxing vacation immersing yourself in tranquility and silence – the perfect environment for relaxation, meditation in nature, and horseback riding.

Hiking and off-site tours to various locations in the Carpathians are an excellent option for a family trip. You can visit the main natural treasures of the region – the National Natural Parks, such as Synevyr, Hutsulʹshchyna, Skolivski Beskydy, the Gorgany Nature Reserve, as well as the Brown Bears Rehabilitation Center, and get acquainted with architectural spots and local museums.

Tourists are also attracted by the Carpathian lakes, such as Synevyr, Vorozhesʹka, Nesamovyte, and others. Each of them shows blue amidst forests and meadows that have changed their outfit, just like a mountain eye.

Fish farms invite fans of trout, perch, and pike to fish and relax next to the water body. The fish caught by you will be cooked at your request and in your presence. It will be grilled on an open fire or made a fragrant smoky flavorous fish soup with it.

Winter holidays: winter sports resort and entertainment

First of all, the Carpathians are known for winter sports resorts. Enthusiasts of outdoor activities and snow fun come here with the arrival of winter. The most popular destinations include Bukovel, Yablunytsya, Drahobrat, Slavs’ke, Play, Vorokhta, Pylypets’, Izky, Myhove. What is the best time to go to the Carpathians in winter? Anytime! Most of the peaks are covered with a sufficiently dense natural snow cover which enables visitors to ski and enjoy other winter sports from late November to mid-April.

Bukovel is the leader in terms of the service standard and the number of tourists. Here you will find 63 set trails many kilometers long with various degrees of difficulty. They are equipped with lifts, locations for freeriding, and jumps for snowboard stunts. There are also slopes for sledding and snow tubing. The extreme fun includes snowmobiling and dog sledding.

When is the best time to go to Bukovel for skiing? It’s up to you. The skiing season starts on December 1 and lasts until mid-spring. Having come to the resort in March, you will have the opportunity to take part in the mass schussing in bathing suits. All event participants are guaranteed to receive memorable prizes and an invitation to a party with contests and foot-tapping dances.

Having planned to go skiing, do not forget to take care of a place to stay in advance, as the accommodation demand at the peak season is sky-high. There are comfortable apartments that can be rented in villages at the foot of the mountain, for example, in the village of Polyanytsya near the Bukovel ski complex. The Stara Pravda Ethno Hotel offers its guests a cozy room with all amenities or a detached cottage with panoramic windows, a balcony, and a large open terrace overlooking the picturesque mountains.

Winter entertainment in the mountains is not limited to skiing, snowboarding, and sledding. You can go on a fascinating tour to Uzhgorod or Mukachevo where the majestic fortress structures have been preserved, visit the thermal springs in Kosyno, go ice fishing or drive a snowmobile in the mountains. Tourists also enjoy expositions of the Carpathian museums telling about the history of the region, lifestyle and traditions of the Hutsuls and Boykos. Do not forget to steam out in a real wood-fired sauna and warm up in open hot vats while enjoying the winter panorama of the mountains.

When are the Carpathians the least visited destination?

The peak tourist season in the Carpathians is July-August and January-February. This is the time when accommodation is in high demand, and therefore you need to book a hotel room in advance. As to other months, the mountains are not crowded. In late fall and early spring, many apartments are vacant. Furthermore, they are much cheaper than during the tourist season.

The Carpathians are beautiful at any time of the year. Go on a trip, enjoy the sceneries, and enrich your treasury of unforgettable experiences. We look forward to seeing you at the Stara Pravda Hotel!