Wildlife, nature, traditional dishes, cultural interactions, history, heritage and lore - these attributes influence our understanding of a country, and all help make it the unique culture that it is.
A thrilling landscape of sky-piercing summits, spectacular ridges and sparkling lakes.
Mention Poland and most people will immediately bring to mind Soviet rule, Solidarity, Pope John Paul II and vodka. They might also recall that those giants of science and music, Marie Curie and Frederick Chopin were, in fact, Polish, and not French, and for those with longer memories there may be vague recollections of Jan Tomaszewski’s goalkeeping heroics denying England progress in the 1974 football World Cup.
Take a quick look at the map and you’d be forgiven for thinking that Poland was little more than a vast, low-lying plain, with little to fire the imagination of hikers and mountain walkers – no major mountain ranges sweeping majestically across the country; no oxygen-deficient summits immortalised in tales of derring-do; no mammoth long-distance pilgrimage routes that have been walked since time immemorial.
But to dismiss Poland as a serious contender for a superb walking holiday would be to do both it, and you, a disservice. You see, Poland has some fabulous hiking to offer!