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6 Aug 2014 Lenka Hudáková Regional News
Exploring the Košice region on two wheels is not meant only for the athletically-inclined. Quite the contrary – there are more than 1,300 kilometres of cycling routes available which make it one of the best means to explore the area. Be it architecture, history or nature that interests you most, visitors can choose the cycling path that suits their interests and physical condition.
Bringing your own bicycle might be a good idea, but renting one is also possible. Make sure to plan at least a day in advance. The day cycling trip to the Lajoška cottage offers great views and diverse places to stop. Starting from the city centre of Košice is a convenient way of gradually moving away from the city landscape and into the nature. Komenského street leads into the Čermeľ Valley, which features the largest woodland park in the area. The green cycling path runs up steeply and leads to Bankov hill. “It’s a great warm-up at the beginning,” says Gabriel Müller, an active biker from Košice.
As Eva Dučaiová, a regular on the route, explains Bankov hill has always been a recreation area for Košice residents, and some people still come here to collect the spring water which is said to have healing and restorative powers. The spring is located under the chapel of the Virgin Mary. It was built in neo-gothic style at the beginning of 20th century. The green cycling path descends to Alpinka, a recreation area with a golf course.
“Before reaching Alpinka, one needs to be careful, the cars can move at a pretty fast speed,” warns Müller.
The green path then continues through Jahodná, a favoured location for hikers and skiers. The blue path to Lajoška cottage passes by the well Jergova. Lajoška (908 metres above sea level), is nestled in the Slovenské Rudohorie Mountains and offers warm food in a cosy seating area. It’s the mountain cottage that is nearest to the city (only 13 km).
To return to Jahodná, one can take an old route built during the Second World War. To come back to the hustle and bustle of the city, there is an option between the blue path number 7 or 5. What Müller likes most about this trip is the fact that “even though you aren’t far away from Košice, you feel deeply surrounded by nature”. To explore the Košice region further by bike, options abound. While the area around Zemplínska Šírava is flat, the Slovenský kras or Slovenský raj await those looking for something more strenuous.
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