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Canoeing, sauna & wild swimming

3-4 days in the undiscovered Augustów Forest

Canoeing, sauna & wild swimming

3-4 days in the undiscovered Augustów Forest

Canoeing, sauna & wild swimming

3-4 days in the undiscovered Augustów Forest

Go canoeing, camping, have a sauna and a wild swim in the wildest part of Europe

Spend 3-4 days in the undiscovered Augustów Forest with a local guide, an experienced naturalist and bushcraft instructor. Canoe through the forest near the border of Poland and Lithuania, put up a tent and pop into sauna to finish with a wild swim. Relax in the wild and recharge. Completely.

The tour takes place in the rural north-eastern Poland, along the most beautiful Polish lowland rivers: Czarna Hańcza and Marycha that straddle the Poland-Lithuania border quietly flowing through the reed bed and forest. We will spend two or three nights (you choose) camping at a riverside and cooking our own food over fire. Don’t worry about your skills, camping gear or supplies – our guide is experienced and will have all the gear as well as the food necessary. All you need is a sleeping bag, mattress, and a pot/dixie with cutlery.

The rivers are slow and shallow so we will also have plenty of opportunities for a wild swim and relaxing in the fire-heated sauna. Wildlife is plentiful and although it’s not the main goal of this tour, you may see birds like Swans, Kingfisher or a White-tailed Eagle. Seeing the tracks of Wolves or signs of Beavers is also quite common in this area.

Our experienced local guide, naturalist and bushcraft specialist knows these rivers as the back of his hand and will accompany you throughout this tour and keep you informed and point out everything that can’t be missed. He will also help you out with camping gear, if needed, and do all the fire-making and cooking (hopefully with your help 🙂

Just pick your travel dates, decide on a 3 or 4-day itinerary and let us know how many of you will come. We don’t join travellers on this tour so you will get a totally personal experience – just your group/family and our guide. It’s an unforgettable adventure in the true wilderness that will stay in your memory for long!

Time & duration

April to October, choose your own dates,
3 or 4-day itinerary

Location

Start and end: Maćkowa Ruda, Wigry National Park

Transport

Participants arrive at starting point on their own. There is a large and safe parking site.

Board & lodging

2-3 nights camping (tents provided)
2 nights sauna + all meals included

Activities

Canoeing and camping in the wild, cooking over fire + sauna and wild swimming

Small private groups

Private departures only, 2-8 persons
Minimum age: 6 yrs – perfect short adventure for families!

Price

Starting from
2150 PLN
per person (ca. €450) / 3 days
2450 PLN
per person (ca. €520) / 4 days

Deposit: 500 PLN
Single canoe/tent: +200 PLN

Relax and recharge in the wild. Completely.

What our customers say

Day by day itinerary

click to expand

Day 1: Meeting in Maćkowa Ruda, Wigry NP & canoeing the Czarna Hańcza River

We will meet early afternoon at a small village of Maćkowa Ruda at the edge of the Wigry National Park. After a brief introduction to the river, techniques and safety we will start slowly with 12 km (ca. 3 hrs) of the Czarna Hańcza River and finish at a quiet camping ground. We will put up our tents, start the fire and enjoy a freshly cooked dinner. Your guide will heat up the sauna and invite you for a few sessions including swimming under the stars in the calm river – a deeply reenergising experience.

Camping in the tents provided by Wild Poland
Meals included: dinner cooked over fire

Day 2: Canoeing the Czarna Hańcza River

You can enjoy a wild swim (as every other morning) while we chop some wood for a campfire and brew the usual fresh coffee. After a hearty breakfast we will make some sandwiches for lunch, pack our gear and head on further down the river for a full day canoeing adventure (21 km and ca. 6 hrs on the water). The river here gets narrower and a lot more fun to paddle with its meanders, fallen trees and unscathed nature around.

We will stop for lunch at a riverside and there will be a chance for a wild swim or a short walk in the forest picking berries, mushrooms or just enjoying the silence. Tonight we will again camp at a riverside and enjoy a yet another dinner cooked over fire and of course – the sauna.

Camping in the tents provided by Wild Poland
Meals included: breakfast, lunch, dinner

Day 3: Canoeing the Czarna Hańcza River & Augustów Canal

After another substantial breakfast, freshly brewed coffee and the usual wild swim we will pack our gear and continue canoeing the Czarna Hańcza River along its most beautiful, varied and fun stretch full of sharp bends and obstacles (16 km/5 hrs). Here, the river flows through the pristine boreal forest and often in a deep, narrow valley with steep banks – an unbelievable scenery just a few hours away from civilisation!

We will finish this day of canoeing with a short but wild stretch of the famous Augustów Canal built in 1828. We will paddle through its two huge sluice locks, now nearly 200 years old – quite an adventure and fun not only for the young!

3-day itinerary

If you opt for a 3-day itinerary, we will be picked up by a minibus that will take us back to the starting point and our cars in the afternoon. You can head on your own way from there or decide to stay at a bed & breakfast in the area to explore the Wigry National Park on your own.

Overnight: not included
Meals included in the 3-day option: breakfast, lunch

4-day itinerary

If you choose the 4-day itinerary (highly recommended!) the minibus will take us (and our boats) deeper into the forest, to a tiny village near the border with Lithuania. This evening we will camp on the banks of the even smaller and completely undiscovered Marycha River – a real gem for wilderness lovers. As usual, after dinner cooked over fire you can jump into sauna and the river itself.

Camping in the tents provided by Wild Poland
Meals included in the 4-day option: breakfast, lunch, dinner

Day 4: Canoeing the Marycha River

Today, we will paddle down a completely forested stretch of our favourite Marycha River along the border with Lithuania. The river is shallow and calm but canoeing may be even more adventurous than previous days as there are many natural obstacles in the form of fallen trees. It may require a lot of manoeuvring and you may even have to carry your canoe over a log at times! The natural landscapes here are breathtaking and the silence and nature calls deeply de-stressing.

We will paddle down about 21 km and spend 6-7 hrs on the water today. The minibus will pick us up at a small village on the border with Lithuania and take us back where we started, late afternoon.

Overnight: not included
Meals included: breakfast, packed lunch

Key information

Camping and food

We will spend 2 or 3 nights (depending on your choice) camping at a riverside. Our tents are new and spacey. In fact they are 4 persons tents but we use them for twin or single occupancy. Camping grounds are very basic (basically just a meadow at a riverside) but equipped with a sauna that we will be free to use each night.

We will dine outside on all days. Breakfasts will be prepared by your guide, over a campfire. These may consist of scrambled eggs, fried sausage, porridge or pancakes. Each day something different but always fresh and delicious. Hot water for tea and freshly brewed coffee will always be available. For lunches, we will make our own sandwiches to eat at midday. For dinners, the guide will start a campfire and prepare a substantial meal of cereal/rice, grilled meats and vegetables or a one pot stew.

Feel free to bring some snacks or an instant soup etc. Depending on the season, there may be a small local shop open nearby at a couple of sites en route but don’t depend on it.

Fitness level - is this tour for me?

An ability to swim and previous canoeing/kayaking experience are essential to join this tour. This trip requires basic fitness to paddle for several hours a day, carry your own luggage or even your canoe at times.

We will spend three to four days (2 or 3 nights) in the wild, regardless of the weather, canoeing between 3 and 7 hrs a day. The waters are generally calm but rivers are narrow and may require a lot of manoeuvring.

Tour leader - an experienced local guide

You will be accompanied by an English speaking Wild Poland guide, an experienced kayaking and bushcraft specialist throughout this tour. He knows these rivers as the back of his hand and will keep you informed and point out everything that can’t be missed.

Joining & departure

The tour starts early afternoon in a small village of Maćkowa Ruda at the edge of the Wigry National Park. Public transport is not easily available. Participants arrive there at their own expense.

It is about 320 km and a 5 hrs drive from Warsaw WAW airport. You can park the car at a spacey parking site on private grounds for the time of the canoeing days. On the last day you will be driven back to the same spot late afternoon.

We will send you over the exact locations, contact details and meeting time after booking.

What to bring - essential luggage & clothing

Canoes and spacey tents are provided by us so no need to carry your own 🙂 There are, however, several items of a more personal nature that are necessary or recommended to have:

You should bring the following necessary items:

  • waterproof dry bags for all your stuff (ca. 30-40 l should suffice),
  • sleeping bag for the right season,
  • mat or mattress,
  • mess tin/pot/dixie with cup and cutlery,
  • towel and toiletry,
  • torch/headlamp,
  • insect repellent and sunhat (May to Sep),
  • raincoat,
  • warm clothes for the right season.

You may consider bringing the following useful items:

  • trekking sandals (to use in water, canoe),
  • additional towel for sauna,
  • swim suit,
  • pocket knife,
  • binoculars/camera
  • thermo flask/cup – very usefull
  • power bank for your electronic devices.

Common questions

Vegetarians & vegans

All of the food will be prepared by the guide, over a campfire, therefore it is not possible to cater for various diets at the same time. If everyone in your party is vegetarian or vegan, let us know when booking and we will see how we can make this work.

Travel & medical insurance

We (Wild Poland) are fully insured tour operator as required by Polish and European law. However, all participants must additionally be covered by personal travel and medical insurance, preferably from the time of booking. This should cover you fully against the cost of cancellation by you, lost baggage, medical care and repatriation as well as include canoeing and wild swimming activities.

We do not provide or check personal travel insurance policies. See our booking conditions › for more details.

How is my money protected?

First of all, we are a registered tour operator in Poland. All holidays by Wild Poland are protected by the Mazovian Province and our AXA tour operator insurance. In the unlikely event of our insolvency, the Province executives guarantee to refund any money you have paid to us for any future booking.

Secondly – you get 100% money back guarantee with Wild Poland. By booking, you will be asked to pay a small deposit to confirm your place. It allows us to book the hotels etc. in your name. In a rare case that we have to cancel the departure because of insufficient number of participants, you will be refunded the full deposit amount. Small differences in the refunded amount may occur because of varying exchange rates.

Finally, we use Poland’s leading online payments gateway called PayU ›. Any critical credit card details are only entered at their secure pages and we have no access to, nor do we withhold any credit card details.

Dates, prices & booking

100% Money Back Guarantee with Wild Poland

 

This tour runs on request and the prices start at just:

2150 PLN per person (ca. €450) for 3 days
2450 PLN
per person (ca. €520) for 4 days

for a group of 5-8 persons. But we can also organise this for 2-4 people, no problem at all!

Deposit: 500 PLN
Single canoe/tent: +200 PLN

Remember, we take all the logistics off your shoulders – from the first until the last day everything is included:

– canoe rental
– local transfers
– camping grounds & tents
– sauna
– food
– professional guiding

 

Write us an e-mail to ask for availability and book

Just write us an email at info@wildpoland.com asking for availability at your preferred dates and your group size and I will get back to you quickly with a detailed offer.

I personally love this tour and can’t wait to take you to my favourite, wild rivers! It’s so much more than just a tour. It’s a deep, joyful experience that will stay with you for long.

– Łukasz

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