Is Zakopane Really Expensive? A Cost Comparison For a Family of 4

Zakopane is a top destination in Poland, attracting millions of tourists annually who appreciate its stunning mountain landscapes and charming city atmosphere. However, with the pandemic and war causing prices to soar nationwide, many wonder if vacationing in Zakopane is still affordable. So, how much will a family of 4 pay for a holiday in Zakopane? Let’s examine the costs and help you decide if it’s worth it.

Preparing for Your Zakopane Holiday: What to Expect

Zakopane is a well-known tourist attraction. It offers something for mountain enthusiasts all year round. Nestled at the foot of the unique Tatra Mountains, the city and its neighboring towns boast an extensive tourist infrastructure. But keep in mind that you may encounter crowds, not only in the city and mountain trails but also on the infamous Zakopianka, the road from Krakow to Zakopane. However, if you can be patient, a fantastic holiday awaits you.

Zakopane by Train or Car? Comparing the Costs

Traveling by car to Zakopane can be tiresome due to traffic jams, while the train offers an alternative. Which option is better and more cost-effective?

Please do not forget reading this article too: Travel Like a Local – Tips for Getting Around Zakopane

↳ Make sure to check out my guide to ALL attractions in Zakopane, so you don't overlook anything interesting: 66 Best Attractions in Zakopane 2023 – What to Do – Interesting Places


With current fuel prices, driving may seem like a choice for the wealthy. The average price for a liter of gasoline is about 7.95 PLN / 1.70 EUR (as of April 2023). Assuming an average fuel consumption of 6 liters/100 km and filling the car with Pb95 petrol, we calculated the round-trip cost to Zakopane by car, excluding traffic jams, toll roads, and passenger weight:

  • Warsaw – Zakopane (approx. 422 km, fuel cost: 403.60 PLN / 86.50 EUR)
  • Gdańsk – Zakopane (approx. 695 km, fuel cost: 664.70 PLN / 142.60 EUR)
  • Białystok – Zakopane (approx. 609 km, fuel cost: 582.44 PLN / 124.92 EUR)
  • Szczecin – Zakopane (approx. 747 km, fuel cost: 714.44 PLN / 153.19 EUR)
  • Łódź – Zakopane (approx. 379 km, fuel cost: 362.48 PLN / 77.68 EUR)
  • Wrocław – Zakopane (approx. 370 km, fuel cost: 353.86 PLN / 75.88 EUR)
  • Poznań – Zakopane (approx. 567 km, fuel cost: 542.28 PLN / 116.27 EUR)
  • Kraków – Zakopane (approx. 111 km, fuel cost: 106.16 PLN / 22.77 EUR)

However, driving offers comfort and flexibility, making it worth the cost for many. Carpooling with others can also help reduce expenses.


Additional holiday train connections enable efficient travel to Zakopane from stations in Warsaw and Gdynia:

  • EIC Tatry and IC Karłowicz – from Warsaw
    • Regular 2nd class ticket (EIC Tatry / IC Karłowicz): from approx. 81 PLN / 17.37 EUR / from approx. 66 PLN / 14.16 EUR
    • Discounted 2nd class ticket (EIC Tatry / IC Karłowicz): from approx. 51 PLN / 10.93 EUR / from approx. 42 PLN / 9.01 EUR
  • TLK Karpaty, IC Witkacy, and TLK Małopolska – from Gdynia
    • Regular 2nd class ticket (TLK Małopolska / IC Witkacy / TLK Karpaty): from approx. 96 PLN / 20.58 EUR / from approx. 99 PLN / 21.24 EUR / from approx. 101 PLN / 21.65 EUR
    • Discounted 2nd class ticket (TLK Małopolska / IC Witkacy / TLK Karpaty): from approx. 60 PLN / 12.87 EUR / from approx. 62 PLN / 13.30 EUR / from approx. 63 PLN / 13.52 EUR
  • IC Halny – from Bydgoszcz
    • Regular 2nd class ticket: from approx. 79 PLN / 16.94 EUR
    • Discounted 2nd class ticket: from approx. 50 PLN / 10.72 EUR
  • IC Podhalanin – from Szczecin
    • Regular 2nd class ticket: from approx. 96 PLN / 20.58 EUR
    • Discounted 2nd class ticket: from approx. 60 PLN / 12.87 EUR

Train travel in Poland is a good option if you don’t mind crowds and sharing space with strangers. By choosing this mode of transportation, you can relax, avoid traffic jams, and potentially meet like-minded mountain enthusiasts.

The best transport option depends on individual needs. For trips with small children, a car may be preferable for added comfort and flexibility. Conversely, trains are an excellent choice for sociable people who enjoy meeting new friends. Ultimately, it’s wise to try both options and decide which works best for you.

For a family of 4 taking the TLK Małopolska train from the Tri-City, a return trip would cost approximately 624 PLN / 133.81 EUR. The car journey from the same location would cost roughly 665 PLN / 142.60 EUR, resulting in a modest difference of around 41 PLN / 8.79 EUR.

Accommodation in Zakopane – Prices

Zakopane, a popular tourist destination, offers a wide range of accommodations, which tend to fill up quickly during peak seasons. Here’s a breakdown of nightly costs for a family with two 12-year-olds:

Accommodation TypePrice Range (PLN)Price Range (EUR)
Guest House / ApartmentFrom 140 PLN to 900 PLNFrom 30.04 EUR to 193.07 EUR
CottageFrom 498 PLN to 1,200 PLNFrom 106.86 EUR to 257.40 EUR
3-Star HotelFrom 423 PLN to 1,028 PLNFrom 90.72 EUR to 220.47 EUR
4-Star HotelFrom 418 PLN to 1,600 PLNFrom 89.63 EUR to 343.04 EUR

↳ Check the available accommodation options in Zakopane by clicking here!

Cable Car to Kasprowy Wierch: Tickets, Price List, Opening Hours

The cable car to Kasprowy Wierch is a highlight of any family trip to Zakopane. You can enjoy a nearly 2,000-meter-high ascent and dine at the highest restaurant in Poland. You can either hike to the summit or take the Polish Cable Railway from Kuźnice.

Kasprowy Wierch – Cable Car

Price List (Spring Season 2023):

Please note that basic ticket prices may fluctuate by several percentage points depending on the time of travel. Morning and evening fares are typically lower.

Ticket TypePrice Range (PLN)Price Range (EUR)
Regular99 PLN / 109 PLN21.24 EUR / 23.39 EUR
Reduced (17% / 8% Discount)79 PLN / 89 PLN16.95 EUR / 19.10 EUR

Where to Buy Tickets?

Tickets can be purchased online, at the ticket counter, or at the customer service office in Kuźnice.

  1. Online purchase: higher prices, option to book a specific time
  2. Counter purchase: lower prices, tickets only for current journeys (no future reservations)
  3. Customer service office: tickets only for the next hour on the same day, card payment only

Cable Car to Kasprowy Wierch – Opening Hours

The cable car operates every 10 minutes (every 30 minutes in bad weather) and return tickets can be purchased up to 2 hours before closing. During the holiday season, from July 1 to August 31, the cable car runs daily from 7:00 to 21:00.

High Season and Low Season – What Do They Mean?

High Season is when tourism is at its peak, resulting in higher prices for products and services. In Zakopane, high season occurs:

  • Mid-June to end of September
  • Mid-December to February

Low Season sees fewer tourists and lower prices for products and services. Zakopane’s low season is:

  • March to mid-April
  • Mid-May to mid-June
  • Early October to mid-December

Tatra National Park: Entry Fees and Attractions

The Tatra National Park is renowned for its unique nature, high mountains, and beautiful landscapes. It’s a favorite destination for tourists seeking tranquility, lakes, and picturesque trails. Some highlights include:

Click Play Button And See The Morskie Oko Lake
  1. Morskie Oko
  2. The Valley of Five Ponds
  3. Peaks
  4. Siklawica Waterfall
  5. Caves
  6. Valleys (e.g., Chochołowska, Biała Woda, Mięguszowiecka, Staroleśna, Kościeliska, Gąsienicowa)
  7. Tatra National Park Museum (Natural Education Center)

Tickets for the Tatra National Park can be purchased at ticket offices or online.

Ticket TypePrice (PLN)Price (EUR)
Normal Ticket9 PLN1.72 EUR
Reduced Ticket4,5 PLN0.86 EUR
Regular Ticket (7 days)45.00 PLN8.58 EUR
Reduced Ticket (7 days)22.50 PLN4.29 EUR

Please read this article to learn more about buying Tatra Park Tickets: Planning a Visit to Tatra National Park: Ticket Prices and Buying Guide

Stationary Ticket Sales Points:

  • Lysa Polana
  • Wierch Poroniec
  • Jaworzynka Valley
  • Hala Goryczkowa
  • Kalatówki
  • White Valley
  • Strążyska Valley
  • Little Meadow Valley
  • Koscielisko Valley

A carriage ride from Palenica Białczańska to Własienica costs 70 PLN per person (over 4 years old), with a return fare of 50 PLN per person. For a family of four, this amounts to 480 PLN.

Prices for Water Parks and Thermal Pools in Podhale

Here’s a summary of the costs for popular water attractions in the Tatra Mountains:

AttractionAdultChild (under 16)Senior (over 60)Family 2+1Family 2+2
Aqua Park Zakopane
All-day „no limit”79 PLN59 PLN59 PLN209 PLN239 PLN
With sauna access95 PLN
Chochołowskie Termy
3-hour pass89 PLN69 PLN
All-day pass129 PLN109 PLN
4-hour family pass219 PLN249 PLN
All-day family pass309 PLN369 PLN
Termy Bania
4.5-hour „fun+relaxation”115 PLN
Bukovina Baths
3.5-hour family pass219 PLN269 PLN

Please note that these prices are for the high season, which runs from December 23 to February 26. Prices may vary outside of this period. Additionally, at the Baths of Bania, prices increase by around 20 PLN between December 23 and January 8, and the prices listed above may differ depending on the chosen attractions and zones.

You may also want to read more about Hot Springs in Zakopane: Discover the Healing Powers of Hot Springs in Zakopane, Poland

Save Money on Attractions by Booking Online

You can explore more with the local people who are willing to present you all the hidden gems.
Check available options here.

If you want to absorb the local culture and history without wasting the time when being in Zakopane, you can book all the trips and attraction upfront. On top of that – in many cases you can save lot of money. You can choose from walking tours, traditional food tours, even from high mountain expeditions.

↳ Check prices of the best local Zakopane attractions by clicking here!

Zakopane Holidays with Children: Prices for Top Attractions

Zakopane offers numerous attractions suitable for all ages. In addition to hiking, younger travelers can enjoy various amusement parks and other interesting activities.

AttractionNormal Ticket (PLN)Reduced Ticket (PLN)Normal Ticket (EUR)Reduced Ticket (EUR)
Parrot House24 PLN19 PLN5.15 EUR4.07 EUR
Iluzja Park40 PLN35 PLN8.58 EUR7.51 EUR
Myszogród21 PLN18 PLN4.51 EUR3.86 EUR
Underwater World21 PLN18 PLN4.51 EUR3.86 EUR
Aquapark Zakopane (Full day)85 PLN69 PLN18.23 EUR14.81 EUR

You may also be interested in reading more about all available attractions here: Discovering the Best Sites of Krupówki: Zakopane’s Old Town

A Trip to Zakopane for 5 Days: Estimated Costs for a Family of 4

Here’s a breakdown of the estimated costs for a 5-day trip to Zakopane for a family of 4 (parents and two children aged 12):

Expense CategoryCost (PLN)Cost (EUR)
Transport (car)665 PLN142.66 EUR
Accommodation (guesthouse, 5 nights)1500 PLN321.94 EUR
Kasprowy Wierch Entrance (combined ticket)436 PLN93.62 EUR
Gubałówka Entrance96 PLN20.59 EUR
Tatra National Park Admission (3 days)72 PLN15.44 EUR
Family Attractions (aquapark, parrot house, etc.)600 PLN128.78 EUR
Food (restaurant dinners + groceries)1200 PLN257.55 EUR
Souvenirs100 PLN21.46 EUR
Total4669 PLN1001.53 EUR

The estimated cost for a 5-day family trip to Zakopane is approximately 4669 PLN (1001.53 EUR). The prices may vary depending on preferences and place of residence. If you choose to stay in a 3-star hotel (average price per night around 500 PLN), the trip’s cost could increase to almost 6,000 PLN (1287.68 EUR).


Comparing this to all-inclusive holidays in Greece or Bulgaria, which may cost around 7,045 PLN (1510.49 EUR) and 7,460 PLN (1601.49 EUR) respectively, it becomes clear that the choice between Zakopane and other international trips is more a matter of personal preference than cost.