While researching for possible hiking opportunities in High Tatras region I have come across several people mentioning Janosikove diery as a very cool hike. Although it is not exactly in the high mountains, we decided to give it a try and didn’t regret for a second. Compared to Predne Solisko hike, the scenery is very different – more of a forest trail with numerous ladders and via ferrata style climbing. The day was full of adventure and great memories.
Arriving at Janosikove diery trailhead
Driving to Janosikove diery from our base in Strba was not difficult, we used Google Maps for navigation. It took us around 1,5 hours to get to the parking lot. Here is an advice – try to be there early, as we arrived at 10am, the parking lot was just about to get full. Parking space cost us 5€ for the day (cash only). Clever locals parked along the road, but we felt that paying a little extra for a secured parking space is a better idea. At the trailhead there are several restaurants, snack shops and souvenir shops. You may also use a toilet there.
There are several options when it comes to hiking at Janosikove diery. We picked the blue route, as it seemed to be the most popular one and had a lot of „attractions“ – famous ladders and stairs as well as metal/wooden paths. Lots of other hikers were on the trail that day, so be prepared to share the road and wait in line to get to the ladder.
The trail is suitable for families with children and anyone who is fit. You need to be careful when stepping on wet stones. The trail may be very slippery and muddy after the rain. Otherwise nothing too scary – very scenic hike through the forest. This trail is perfect for hot summer days, as you will be passing lots of waterfalls and small creeks. At somepoint we reached a hilltop and had a short break for snacks with fantastic view of the valley and nearby hills.
What to pack for Hiking Janosikove diery
We recommend packing enough water and snacks, even though you can buy them at a shop along the way. Some trails are quite long and go all the way up the nearby hills. Wear a hat and sunscreen – although you are going to hike in the forest, occasional sunlight may burn your skin in minutes! High ankle hiking boots may be good for climbing the wet rocks, although sneakers will probably do as well (just be prepared that your feet may get wet as you need to cross the creeks sometimes). Hiking poles are rather unnecessary and may be dangerous for you and others. I would recommend bringing gloves, as you will need to use your hands when climbing.
As mentioned earlier, the trail is not difficult at all. Some parts require a bit of climbing and via ferrata style (grabbing metal cord attached along the side of the rock). It’s a lot of fun, especially for kids. You can finish the famous „waterfall“ part and then turn right for a forest trail to lead you back to parking (that’s what we did). The roundtrip was around 10km.
Another option is to go up to the peaks of nearby mountains (up to 1100m). I’m quite sure the view is beyong amazing. Sadly we weren’t up for that after the Solisko hike on the previous day. However, I would definitely try the longer hike next time, as the area is just amazing for hiking.
Where to eat?
This hike will surely leave you hungry and by the time you reach your car, restaurants at the parking lot will be full of likeminded hikers. Here is what we did – quick search in Google Maps and we found a very cool local restaurant along the way – Jánošíkov dvor. The place was crowded as well, but luckily had lots of seats. They offer traditional Slovak food, which is both delicious and moderately priced. Here is the address: Petrová 8, 027 05 Zázrivá-Petrová, Slovakkia.
Is it worth going?
Absolutely, yes! I wasn’t sure myself because I love hiking big mountains, but this fun little hike was very cool and different from a traditional „going-up-the-mountain“ types of hiking. It was a great relief hat the hike was in a shady forest, rather than burning sunshine. I loved the climbing and holding on to the rocks, metal cords and ladders. I love the nature and all the small creeks and waterfalls – they are beyong amazing! If you have the time and car, definitely go and explore!