Green infrastructural investments give tourism industry in Northern Poland a great boost

New bicycle routes and waterways, riverside marinas and camping sites with all necessary sanitary facilities, tourism centres and parking – those are the results of an infrastructural project called “Bory Tucholskie - in the labyrinth of nature”. The project not only made the beautiful region of Bory Tucholskie more accessible by striving for nature tourists but was also a big boost for local economy, tourism and culture.

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New facilities allow locals and tourists to enjoy the beauty of Bory Tucholskie © Powiat Tucholski New facilities allow locals and tourists to enjoy the beauty of Bory Tucholskie © Powiat Tucholski

" Around 200 000 people have already visited Bory Tucholskie after the project was accomplished. It is clear that new infrastructure attracts tourists and allows them to enjoy the beauty of Bory Tucholskie Unesco Biosphere Reserve and provide a great boost for local economy. Nineteen new full-time jobs have been created as a result of the investment. "

Karol Gutsze, project manager

Bory Tucholskie in Tuchola County is an exceptional place on the map of Poland. Its wild pine forests, surrounded by unique heathlands, crossed by two small but rushing rivers, are home to tens of different species of animals: wolves, deer, wild boars, foxes, beavers and many rare kinds of birds like white-tailed eagles, ospreys, grey herons and black storks.

With such natural value the area is very attractive for tourists but any development projects have to meet high standards of nature protection. Balancing these two elements was the main goal of “Bory Tucholskie – in the labyrinth of nature” project run by Tuchola County and co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

Sustainable development

Due to the existence of formally protected landscape parks and Unesco Biosphere Reserve, regional authorities decided to focus on promoting eco-friendly activities by creating infrastructure necessary for bicycle tourism, water tourism and lowland hiking.

The project included constructing six riverside marinas, three camping sites with all necessary sanitary facilities, new beaches, a tourism centre and parking—all ready to welcome tourists.

As a result of a project bikers can now access more than 20 km of biking routes, including the newly created 6,37 km route (Tuchola - Świt –Tuchola) which has several bike stands on the way. It allows them to safely reach a nature reserve “The Valley of Brda River” and the forest stand called ‘Piekło’. With bike stands on the way, tourists have possibility to move around freely and leave their bicycles in a safe place.

For kayak lovers there are more than 40 kilometres of water routes on the two rivers - Brda and Wda. There are six marinas and houseboats with equipment rentals on the way, shelters and special spots to make a bonfire. There are also three camping sites with spaces for caravans and tents and all necessary sanitary facilities, plus sports fields and playgrounds for kids.

Finally, a 30-meter high wooden observation tower was built for tourists to admire “the labyrinth of nature” from bird’s eye view.

Something for the spirit

In addition to outdoor activities, project managers also thought about promoting cultural activities. Three new amphitheatres and a centre for tourism and culture were established as a part of a project. Tourists can stop there to watch a theatre play, listen to a concert or take part in an art exhibition which runs on a daily basis.

All facilities prepared as a part of a project are accessible for people with disabilities so everybody can enjoy the beauty of local nature. There are wheelchair ramps, handrails and special signs for disabled people to be able to go around freely.

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the project “Bory Tucholskie – in the labyrinth of nature” is EUR 5 433 517 (PLN 22 278 239) of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund is contributing EUR 2 875 347 (PLN 11 788 923) from the Operational Programme 'Kujawsko-Pomorskie' for the 2007 to 2013 programming period.

Draft date

05/08/2015