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    ​​The Bielsko-Biala voivodeship is famous for its splendid nature. One-third of its area is covered with forests, especially in the Beskidy mountains. You can still find here the remains of the primeval spruce, beech, and fir forests. The lowest parts are dominated by birches, sycamore, and maples; above, there are beeches and conifers, gradually giving way to dwarf mountain pines. Over 1,560 meters above the sea level, the only plants are of the Alpine type. Equally rich is the fauna; in the remote parts of forests you can meet bears, badgers, deer, wolves, lynxes, roe-deer, otters, many species of birds, reptiles, and amphibians. To preserve this unique environment, the Babia Gra National Park has been created, now included in the UNESCO's World Network of Biosphere Preservation.

    The landscape of the region is dominated by the mountains, covering two-thirds of its area. Many Polish rivers originate here, including the longest, Vistula, which has its spring on the slopes of Barania Gra. Dams, built in the mountain valleys, resulted in a few water reservoirs of which the largest are the lakes Miedzybrodzkie and Zywieckie--ideal for all kinds of water sports.

    The Bielsko-Biala region is one of the most attractive parts of Poland. Tourists who come here to admire its scenic landscapes and nature can make use of good transport connections and well developed facilities. There are over 30,000 beds in numerous hotels, hostels, and refuges open all year long, plus an additional 10,000 in seasonal establishments. The season never ends and there are lots of possibilities to choose from: climbing, trekking, skiing, water sports, gliding, paragliding, horse riding. There are also excellent opportunities for hunters and anglers.

    A popular tourist center is in the Beskid Slaski region. Szczyrk, Wisla, and Ustronie boast over 50 percent of all accommodations here. Like everywhere in the Beskidy area, the standards vary. Now, when tourism is becoming more and more commercialized, private entrepreneurs seek new possibilities of development. One of them is creating joint ventures with foreign partners.

    Szczryk is sometimes called "Polish Chamonix." Indeed, no other Polish town has so many ski facilities and routes. The second in popularity is probably the ski center in Korbielow at the foot of Pilsko.

    A real oasis of peace is the Beskid Zywiecki area. It is one of the cleanest parts of Poland. Worth visiting are particularly Zawoja, Zwardon, Ujsoly, and Rajcza. For the scenic landscapes and wholesome climate, go to the highest villages in the Beskidy mountains such as Istebna, Koniakow, and Jaworzynka. See also the Ustronie spa, renowned for its therapeutic muds and saline of iodic and bromic waters.

    Thousands of Polish and foreign visitors come to the site of the largest Nazi concentration camp in Oswiecim (Auschwitz). Tourists and pilgrims visit also Wadowice, the native town of Pope John Paul II, and the Bernardine monastery in Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, famous for the annual Easter ceremonies.

    Undoubtedly, the future tourism in this voivodeship will become as profitable and important as industry. However, in order to benefit from the region's natural advantages, it is necessary to modernize its facilities to meet the international standards. This process has already begun. All potential partners interested in this form of investment are welcome.