Apples from Europe – high quality apples


The Apple Trail - tourism in Europe’s largest orchard

The beginnings of fruit production in the Grójec-Warka region, referred to as Europe’s Largest Orchard, date back to the mid-16th century. Currently, it is not only an area famous for the production of delicious apples. It is also an increasingly distinctive point on the tourist map of Poland. Beautiful landscapes, crystal-fresh and crisp air, and numerous surprises for travellers. What are they?

Poland is an extremely diverse country, where large and modern cities, teeming with life, contrast with the soothing silence of the countryside, full of greenery and peace. If you wish to experience such a unique atmosphere, it is worth starting your journey around Poland from Mazovia. This is where the dynamically developing capital city – Warsaw – is located, being at the same time the largest Polish city, full of metropolitan restaurants, music clubs and museums. Walking through the bustling streets of this metropolis, it is hard to believe that the city is surrounded by areas dominated by wild nature and beautiful natural landscapes. It is even harder to believe that less than 40 km south of Warsaw lies the largest orchard in Europe!

Apple – an inseparable part of the region’s culture

The largest orchard in Europe is an area famous for its excellent apples. Its strategic importance for the Polish production of apples is evidenced by the Association of Polish Fruit Growers (which brings together thousands of fruit growers) and the Grójec Apples Association (associating the largest local groups of fruit producers). However, it is worth being aware that fruit growing in this region is also an inseparable part of the turbulent history of the country, a tradition cultivated for nearly 500 years!

In order to bring this rich heritage closer to everyone interested, in 2017, by the initiative of a group of local community workers led by the W.A.R.K.A. Association, the Apple Trail was established, initially covering facilities located in the Warka commune, and since 2020 – also in the Grójec poviat.


Apple trail – full of surprises!

The Apple Trail is one of the most beautiful tourist routes in Poland. During the seventy-kilometre journey, it is worth stopping at one of the numerous viewpoints from where you can admire the charming surroundings with lazily meandering rivers and thousands of hectares of impressive orchards. After all, an apple is the symbol of this region! Despite the fact that the greatest attractions of the trail are associated with apples, visitors can also find surprises of a different type.

In addition to beautiful landscapes, tourists can enjoy the unique atmosphere of small towns, such as: Czersk, Warka, Jasieniec, Grójec, Belsk Duży, Nowe Miasto nad Pilicą or Błędów. Each of them has its own unique story.

Before the first apple trees bloomed, brewing flourished here

Although the fruit-growing traditions of this region date back nearly 500 years, the history of many nearby towns is much longer. In 2021, Warka celebrated its 700th anniversary. Before the first fruit trees were planted there, the town had already been famous for producing high-quality beer for 200 years. The popularization of fruit-growing in the Warka Land did not prevent the development of the local brewing industry. To this day, it is said that “Warka flows with beer, but is based on apples”. What’s more, the owner of BroWarka – one of the craft beer breweries in this region – went a step further. For the production of beer under the Drzewo Życia (Tree of Life) brand, he uses apples from nearby orchards.

Famous Grójec is only 100 years younger. It celebrated its 600th anniversary in 2019. This year the town was announced the capital of culture of Mazovia. Therefore, there will be many attractions and artistic events waiting for those arriving there in the summer and autumn season.

Passing through Belsk Duży, it is worth visiting the beautifully maintained palace and park complex from the 18th century in Mała Wieś. After visiting the gardens, you can sit down for a meal there, and even stay for the night. The accommodation base is actually even broader. The idyllic atmosphere is offered, for example, by the Sielanka nad Pilicą hotel. An unforgettable experience will also be provided by accommodation in one of the numerous fruit farms offering agritourism services. Thrill seekers can also use the services of the Kemping nad Pilicą campsite, the owners of which assure that only there you can feel the “refreshing rural microclimate saturated with fresh air” ( Numerous attractions are waiting for guests, such as a zip line or a trampoline. You can also play paintball, organize a canoeing trip along Pilica and have a bonfire.

Horsepower, draft horses and a herd of alpacas

How about getting on a tractor? It’s not a problem on the Apple Trail! You can stay in Jasieniec, where the owners of Sekretny Sad (Secret Orchard) encourage you to take advantage of such an attraction. You can also take a horse-drawn carriage ride. Kids will spend wonderful moments playing outdoors – among trees and animals.

Many wild animals visit European apple orchards. The most common mammals are roe deer, hares and pheasants. Certainly hardly anyone would suspect that one can come across an alpaca on an apple plantation. You can visit one of the farms located in Zofiówka near Błędów, where these relatives of camels are bred. On site, these people-friendly animals can be hugged, stroked, fed and photographed.

These are, of course, only some of the twenty-two attractions of Europe’s Largest Orchard. News about events planned there can be found online.

Kitchen revolutions with an apple in the lead role

While traversing the Apple Trail, it is of course worth paying attention to the roadside stalls, where in late summer and autumn you can buy fresh apples straight from the tree. Many places also organize tastings of local products, including various types of juices and apple liqueurs.

In the Grójec-Warka Basin, you can also see that an apple is not only a fruit eaten raw or an addition to sweet desserts. The whole Apple Trail is arranged into an original culinary story, where apples play the lead role, often being an ingredient of savoury and even spicy dishes. The most interesting preserves and dishes are distinguished by the culinary “Apple on a fork” certificate, which confirms their exceptional quality and connection with the region. You can taste them in nearby hotels and restaurants.

More and more fruit farms in the Grójec-Warka region have the Integrated Production certificate and introduce environmentally friendly production methods. This means that fruits from Europe’s Largest Orchard contain less or no pesticide residues than conventionally produced fruits.

Is it worth reaching for apples ripening in European orchards? The answer seems obvious. The best option is to check it out for yourself and visit Europe’s Largest Orchard, where you can try apples straight from the tree!