The Western Tatras (Slovak: Západné Tatry; Polish: Tatry Zachodnie) are mountains in the Tatras, part of the Carpathian Mountains, located on the Polish-Slovak borders (Małopolskie and Liptov/Orava regions respectively). The mountains border the High Tatras in the east, Podtatranská kotlina in the south, Choč Mountains in the west and Rów Podtatrzański (Slovak: Podtatranská brázda) in the north. The main ridge is 37 kilometers long and the mountain range contains 31 two-thousanders.
The Western Tatras are subdivided into 6 regions on the Slovak side and 4 on the Polish side.
Slovak Western Tatras:
- Osobitá (highest point: Osobitá, 1 687 m)
- Sivý vrch (highest point: Sivý vrch, 1 805 m)
- Liptovské Tatry (highest point: Bystrá, 2 248 m)
- Roháče (highest point: Baníkov, 2 178 m), one of the most popular parts of the range
- Červené vrchy (highest point: Kresanica / Krzesanica, 2 122 m)
- Liptovské kopy (highest point: Veľká kopa, 2 122 m)
Polish Western Tatras:
- Kasprowy Wierch
- Czerwone Wierchy (corresponds to Červené vrchy, highest point: Kresanica / Krzesanica, 2 122 m)
Flora and fauna
The same as in High Tatras applies - the weather can change quickly, so follow forecast and be prepared to descend quickly too.
On the Slovak side, 1 parking Zverovka-Spalená is a good starting point into the heart of the range. The only downside (cannot be avoided though) is the 1-hr walk is needed towards Ťatliakova hut.
Fees and permits
The access is generally free, except for possible small parking fees at ski centers during summer.
- 1 Roháč waterfall (Roháčsky vodopád) (Accessible from Zuberec village). The highest waterfall of the mountain range, it is about 18 meters high.
- 2 Roháč lakes (Roháčske plesá). A nice one-day hike.
- 3 Liptov village museum (in Pribylina). A reconstruction of a historical village destroyed while creating Liptovská Mara dam.
- 4 Orava village museum (Nearby Zuberec). A reconstruction of a historical village.
During summer, most common activity is hiking.
- 1 Sivý Vrch. A very photogenic, though somewhat technically demanding peak.
- 2 Baníkov. Highest peak of the main mountain range ridge.
On the Polish side:
- 3 Jaskinia Wielka Śnieżna. The largest and deepest cave in Poland
- 4 Jaskinia Mroźna. Guided and lighted.
There are several huts and areas where hikes can start and end or where you can rest:
On the Slovak side:
- 1 Zverovka hut.
- 2 Brestová.
- 3 Ťatliakova chata (Ťatliakova hut).
- 4 Žiarska chata (Žiarska hut).
- 5 Mountain hotel Osobitá.
On the Polish side:
- 6 PTTK Hala Kondratowa.
- 7 PTTK Hala Ornak.
- 8 PTTK at Polanie Chochołowskiej.
- 9 Mountain hotel PTTK Kalatówki.