A living tradition

After fascination with exotic flavours and admiration of novelty we tend to turn towards our culinary roots more and more often. When preparing food at home, as well as when eating out, we often reach for flavours and products we remember from our childhood. It's a wonderful feeling, when a single bite can bring back memories of our loved ones and of the beautiful places we miss. We’re getting increasingly prouder of our regional products and dishes; we rediscover things that our parents and grandparents were familiar with. Luckily, in many places in Poland, as well as in the Beskids, the culinary heritage is guarded by numerous country housewives' clubs that watch over the local culinary traditions and recipes of dishes that were often passed down from one generation to another. Their masterful dishes can be tasted at local culinary reviews. One can rediscover forgotten flavours there.


What should one eat in the Beskids?

The influences of various cultures and nations left their mark on the Beskids culinary heritage. In the cuisine of villages of Little Poland and Silesia one can easily find Hungarian, German, Austrian, or Jewish influences. Simple, nutritious, and tasty highlander cuisine makes up a separate category that has its own rich traditions. That’s where the most characteristic Beskid products and dishes stem from, e.g. kwaśnica, which is a soup made out of sauerkraut with ribs, or sheep’s milk products such as żętyca, bundz, bryndza and oscypek.

Ramson soup

Oravian crepes

Bread with lard

Pierogi with blueberries



Shepherd’s huts in the Beskids


Sopki Stopki –
Cięcina Górna

Cięcina is a picturesquely located village in the Żywiec Beskid. Among the fields of Cięcina Górna and between old wooden shacks the Stopek family runs their natural farm. In one part of the village, on two sides of the Cięcinka stream, there is a small open-air museum with reconstructions of wooden buildings of a highlander village of the Żywiec land and a pastoral farm with a shepherd’s hut. The pastoral farm by ul. Spacerowa is public throughout the entire grazing season. As the owners proudly emphasize, that’s where the oldest senior shepherd in Cięcina makes his cheeses. Shepherds and their sheep walk the meadows and glades of the Żywiec Beskid, mostly at the ridge from Cięcina to Lipowska Meadow.

Bukowina –
Węgierska Górka

Bukowina is a deforested hill (511 m a.s.l.) by Węgierska Górka, Cięcina and Żabnica, historically connected to defensive forts from the World War II. It’s also an attractive viewpoint overlooking the Silesian, Żywiec and Small Beskids as well as the Żywiec Basin. That’s where one of the most popular shepherd’s huts of the Żywiec county is located. The hut is surrounded by numerous information boards that explain the idea of cultural grazing. From the perspective of many tourists, a great advantage of the facility is that it can be easily approached. One can park their car right next to the hut. For families with children on the other hand, a big asset is the pen with alpacas, that are doing very well in our Beskid climate.


Przegibek Pass –
Rycerka Górna

The Przegibek Pass is probably the highest constantly inhabited hamlet in the Żywiec land. In this beautiful area the Micorek family takes care of their familial territory and cultural sheep grazing. The sheep are grazed mostly at the ridge of Bendoszka Wielka from the Przegibek Pass up to the slopes of Praszywka Wielka. The shepherds and the sheep are most often encountered along the blue trail leading from Sól to Rycerzowa Meadow. In the grazing season one can easily buy cheeses on a glade at the Przegibek Pass.

Glinne Pass–

At the Glinne Pass (808 m a.s.l.), in the neighbourhood of a late border crossing, one of the most popular shepherd’s huts of the Żywiec Beskid is located. The Majewski family has been running traditional grazing in that place for several dozen years. In Korbielów, there is a regular spring party referring to the traditional practice of trailing the sheep. Cheeses can be bought in a booth by the parking lot by the very border. However, we encourage you to go for a little walk to the hut. Looking at the products from behind the counter is not the same as seeing the hut up close and smelling the smoke in which the cheeses are smoked using traditional methods.


Serowa Kraina (The Cheese Land) –

The offer of the Cheese Land is very broad, and each cheese enjoyer will definitely find something they like there. Their flagship product is the Rajski Cheese, which was named after the Rajcas, the founders of the village of Rajcza, as well as after its rajski (which means heavenly in Polish) taste. On the list of cheeses that can be eaten at the Cheese Land are rennet cheeses such as bundz – natural as well as with addition of herbs, creamy curds, Charollaise type blue cheeses, Faisselle type curd cheeses, smoked cheeses, including small cheeses, medium cheeses, strings, as well as long-ripened hard cheese. The speciality and pride of local cheese makers is Rajski Curd – a creamy curd and Rabuś Cheese – a Charollais type blue cheese. The cheeses are made out of cow milk.

Boracza Meadow –

One of the most easily accessible and also most popular meadows in the Żywiec Beskid is the Boracza Meadow at the height of approx. 800-850 m a.s.l. That’s where a pastoral farm run by the Gruszek family is located. Their shepherd’s hut on Boracza Meadow hosts guests throughout the entire grazing season. The hosts are active in the pastoral community and regularly organize annual parties promoting traditional grazing. The sheep are grazed mostly at the pastoral meadows between Prusów, through Boracza Meadow up to Redykalna Meadow. The shepherds and the sheep can be encountered at the blue trail, as well as outside of the trail, e.g. at the Juraszek’s hamlet.