From time to time everyone needs some sort of break, a time which could be devoted only to ourselves and our dear ones. In February, I had a chance to relax a little bit out of my hometown and I spent the last weekend of my winter break in a picturesque village – Brenna – which is a spot situated in the valley of Brennica River and surrounded by stunning views of nearby mountaintops. For some of you it might seem to be a too peaceful place, totally different from the usual hustle and bustle of big cities and endless honking of impatient drivers having continuous phone calls just to finish everything on time. You might be right, however, if we take such a short time into consideration, which is a single weekend, it’s a truly amazing place for loading your weak batteries.
Our car trip from Jaworzno to Brenna was rather short and it took us around an hour and a half to reach our destination. After getting to the right place, which means our accommodation, we faced our first problem … since it was the end of winter break the parking lot was really crowded … as we decided on a short walk around the place, we wanted to go to the center of the village by car … and guess what? Well, it turned out that in the eyes of locals we were just townies … as we were defeated by little mud … no, I need to correct myself right now, as at the first glance it was just a harmless patch of mud, which swallowed our car and we couldn’t have avoided being hauled. Fortunately, the local mountaineers occurred to be a very well-organized community, and in this way by jungle telegraph, laughing to himself, a tractor operator came to our rescue and helped us to get out of our captivity. As it turned out later, the locals knew really well, that during thaw even such seemingly harmless looking dirt roads can become a real nail in somebody’s coffin, which in this case was our means of transport.
Happy and still thrilled – since you won’t find such attractions in the city – we set off to the center of Brenna, after little shopping, done just in case if we got stuck somewhere in the wilderness again … we proceeded directly to a cafeteria, the venue which occurred to have a totally original name Kawiarnia & Pub NIEbanalnie – where we got comfortable on the coach and we decided to order some delicious coffee which was accompanied by mouthwatering cakes. No decor detail had escaped our notice, which was quite unusual … a real combination of different styles and colors, but we got so much attached to this place that we would visit it everyday until the end of our stay, enjoying wonderful desserts and aromatic coffee.
After this full of new experiences morning and relaxing a little bit at the cafeteria we went back to our cabin, where we gave ourselves over to gambling pleasures … and I don’t really want to boast, but not understating any game rules, I outplayed everyone! And how can one still be modest?
Unfortunately, we went to Brenna at the time when there was no snow … that’s why, instead of trying how to ski, we decided to wander a little bit around the neighborhood admiring beautiful views and listening to the rhythmic Brennica River flowing … in this way we got a little bit hungry and we discovered an amazing spot for lunch time – Skalny Dworek – in which the dining room was joined with a spacious terrace allowing its guests to admire charming views while having a meal. The restaurant offered many types of local delicacies such as Silesian roulade with dumplings and red cabbage, a tray of diversities and lumberjack’s food. The interior of that venue was covered with wood, which accompanied by traditional music added in some special mountaineer vibes to this place. The restaurant had not only delicious meals on its offer, but also mulled wine which was just perfect to warm ourselves up a little bit, as despite the fact that we couldn’t really enjoy the snow, it was quite cold and unpleasant outside. Skalny Dworek also occurred to be a wonderful place for some photo shooting!
We spent our evening in Karczma na Kamieńcu enjoying the local nightlife and what really happened there should remain our little secret!
Next day, we went to Kawiarnia & Pub NIEbanalnie again, where we had a possibility to recover from the previous night’s attractions. After that we went for a short walk to breath in some crisp, as one of my friends called it ‘alpine’ air by the Brennica River and in this way we reached – Kozia Zagroda – situated close to the Tourist Park. This inn was reconstructed to preserve the wołoski farmhouse style – together with its farm buildings and livestock, which was an amazing attraction especially for its youngest visitors. This venue was built in a truly mountaineer style and offered dishes typical of this region, which were mostly prepared in front of its guests. While visiting Brenna one cannot miss that place for sure!
I think I haven’t mentioned that yet … the main reason of our excursion was one of the events created on facebook, which we had a chance to take part in … but why? Its name speaks for itself – Crazy Sleigh Ride Saturdays in Brenna with a Folk-Polo disco hosted by DJ Janosik … it was something we really needed! The sleigh ride started next to Karczma na Kamieńcu. The route was supposed to go along the Hołcyna stream valley to the Jaworowa or Grabowa mountain meadow (907 m a.s.l) or along the Brennica River. Due to lack of snow the organizers chose the carts carried by sweet and friendly horses instead of traditional sleighs. Everything was accompanied by mountains, forests, torches, mountaineer dances, music and stories told by a senior shepherd. After coming back to Karczma na Kamieńcu we were welcomed by roast sausages, we were also treated with a thick slice of bread covered with lard, gherkin out of the oak barrel, grilled oscypek with cranberries, tea with raspberries and Highlander’s goulash. Finally we were warmed up for good with Highlander’s mulled wine and a glass of Highlander’s Miodonka. Between the meals the participants of the sleigh ride could also dance a little bit to the rhythms of folk polo with DJ Janosik. It was an ideal way to finish our stay in Brenna and it’s definitely something worth experiencing at least once in your lifetime!
I strongly recommend you a trip to Brenna, which may not have too many attractions to offer, but it’s a truly magical place with a real mountaineer spirit, which will allow you to relax and have a nice time together with your friends. And where do you like spending your weekends?
See you around!
Photos by: Darek Sobula