Prielom Hornádu – 16 km long canyon in the Slovak Paradise National Park

Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia - 9
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Prielom Hornádu is approximately 16 km long canyon located in the Slovak Paradise National Park. It begins in Hrabušice-Podlesok and ends in Smižany village. The hiking trail takes you to the amazing nature, along the upper part of the river Hornád.

The hiking trail is not that difficult, suitable even for less experienced hikers and also for young children (I’ve seen there even less than 4 years old kid) however in some parts the trail is really dangerous and it requires more courage.

Prielom Hornadu - 11, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Prielom Hornadu

You will need to pass through the 7 bridges, 140 ladders and about 70 meters of wooden footbridges. There are approximately 320 meters of chains that will help you in this adventure. Be careful and hold the chains wherever they are installed to avoid falling down the steep cliffs.

You can visit Prielom Hornádu any time of the year, it is very nice in the hot summer when the temperatures are still pleasant here. And even in winter, when the river is frozen and you can see numerous frozen waterfalls all around so it is absolutely different from what you can see here in the summer.

Prielom Hornadu - 11, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Prielom Hornadu

Prielom Hornádu is interesting for its length, depth and steep (sometimes up to 300 meters high) cliffs that flank both sides of the river. Since 1974, it has been open to the public.

There are many other hiking trails in the Slovak Paradise National Park, many of them begin equally in Hrabušice-Podlesok and several more cross Prielom Hornádu. You can also start a tour in Čingov or in Smižany.

National park is full of gorges and canyons and my favorite one is Veľký Sokol gorge.

Prielom Hornadu - 1, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Prielom Hornadu

Prielom Hornadu - 2, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Prielom Hornadu

Prielom Hornadu - map
Prielom Hornadu – map – click here to open larger map

Prielom Hornádu in winter

Hiking the river Hornád through its surface is definitely one of the most adventurous and unforgettable experiences of hiking in the Slovak Paradise!

Around the riverbed, usually below cliffs, or in rock holes, and where the small streams fall in the river Hornád from the steep sides of the canyon, you’ll see beautiful ice stalactite decoration and other ice creations.

In addition to hikers, we can also meet skiers, skaters, or even winter bikers on the frozen cover.

Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia - 6
Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia

Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia - 7
Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia

Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia - 9
Prielom Hornádu canyon in winter, Slovakia

Where to stay at Prielom Hornádu

There are several pensions, private cottages, apartments and one camping where you could stay during a longer visit to the area. As there are numerous hiking trails starting in Podlesok, this would be one of the best places to stay.

And if you are looking for some unique accommodation in the area, you will probably be looking for Ranč u Trapera or Yellow Paradise House

Ranch u Trapera, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Ranch u Trapera, Hrabusice, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia

Yellow Paradise House, Hrabusice, Slovak Paradise
Yellow Paradise House, Hrabusice, Slovak Paradise

Disappointment in Prielom Hornádu

Even though the nature is really unique and beautiful here and all the bridges, ladders and other equipment are all first-class work, there is one thing that no tourist can overlook.

Prior entering the national park, Hornád river needs to pass through several gypsies settlements on its way. Gypsies have built their slums usually along the river without any permission and do not care about nature.

Garbage in Prielom Hornadu - 2, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Garbage in Prielom Hornadu

Garbage in Prielom Hornadu - 1, Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Garbage in Prielom Hornadu

They are able to throw all their garbage into the river, including TV sets, fridges, plastics and everything they don’t need. Unfortunately no goverment was able to manage this 100 years old issue so far and they apparently do nothing to solve this either.

So once here, do not be surprised when you’ll see a rubbish dump on some places along the river. I saw this already in the Slovak Karst National Park when we were on a tour around Jasov cave.

Otherwise, the river looks to be clear and so it is the forest around!

Prielom Hornádu - Podlesok - Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia
Prielom Hornádu – Podlesok – Slovak Paradise National Park, Slovakia

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Julius

I am someone who left his open-spaced cubicle after spending there 8 years of his life. Someone who started to live more outside! :) I am in travel blogging since 2010 and with Traveltipy I am going to conquer the world :)

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