The plethora of attractions and valuable constructions, as well as the unique natural world, will surprise even experienced cycling tourers who have already seen a lot. The path starts in Rytel, and then winds through the Tuchola Forest. It then goes through Zabory Land and Bytów Land, to the valley of the Słupia River. Following the river, it will take you to the sea – to Ustka. The last section of the route corresponds to the international R10 route, and runs along the southern shore of Łebsko Lake, through Kluki, to Łeba.
This is a pretty long excursion – one which is worth dividing into five days’ journey (due to the surface of its paths and the plethora of structures worth seeing). Please note that some sections are sandy or boggy (especially in the Słupia Valley, near Bytów and Kluki), therefore, despite the extensive length of the well-established route, it is best to choose a bike with broad, off-road tyres.
This route starts in the Tuchola Forest and leads from Rytel, Mylof, Brusy and Leśno, along the trails of the “Kaszubska Marszruta” (the Kashubian Marching Road) – at first, the yellow trail, and then the green trail (from Mylof to Brusy). This is so-called ‘Zabory Land’. From Brusy to Przymuszewo, the route runs along the yellow-black literary route of, among others, Anna Łajming, and next continues along an unmarked, yet beautiful section of road to Sominy. Here, we recommend you to spend the night. From Sominy, the route leads along the unmarked USBS route (Ustka – Słupsk – Bytów – Sominy), through Studzienice, to Bytów, and towards the Słupia Valley. Inside the Słupia Valley Landscape Park, there are historical hydroelectric power stations. Moreover, the USBS route runs together with the marked blue cycling trail from near Krosnowo, to Kępa Słupska. It is recommended that you spend the second night in the Słupia Valley, somewhere in the vicinity of Dębnica Kaszubska or Krzynia.
Another interesting spot on the trail is the historical city of Słupsk. Here, you can stop the trip and go sightseeing (Note, there are numerous trail and urban rail connections) or continue the excursion by following the blue “W Dolinie Moszczeniczki” (the Moszczeniczka Valley) trail, and visit Bierkowo – one of the villages of the “Checkered Land.” We believe that it is worth veering off the course a couple of kilometres to see the most beautiful village in this region – Swołowo. Next, you should go on to Ustka (following an unmarked trail), from where the route will lead you along the “Trail of rolled tracks” to Rowy. It is recommended that you spend the night in Ustka, Poddąbie or Rowy. Next, the route follows a coastal section of the international R10 path, and leads to the interesting village of Kluki (a open-air ethnographic museum is to be found here). It then goes along the southern coast of Łebsko Lake, to Łeba, where you will see the moving dunes of the Słowiński National Park. You should stop for the night somewhere in the vicinity of Łeba. During the tourist season, you can return to Tricity by a train that passes through Lębork, or you can continue your journey east, towards Puck and Wejherowo.
An interesting modification of the route consists of starting your journey in Chojnice. This will give you 30 kilometres more to travel. While cycling the routes described in this guide, you can also visit the second national park located in the Pomorskie Voivodeship: the Tuchola Forest National Park. We would suggest you start in Chojnice and go towards Charzykowy, to Chociński Młyn, and then cycle along the Necklace of the North Greenway, through the area of the Zaborski Landscape Park, to Leśno. In Leśno, you can just stick to the route in line with the description.
0 km – Rytel (a train station). This is a holiday resort on the Brda River, near National Road 22. There is a Neo-Baroque church in the village. Cycle along the “Kaszubska Marszruta” (the Kashubian Marching Road) trail from the station in the centre of the locality, go pass the church, and continue westwards across the bridge over the Brda.
4.2 km – Rytel-Tartak (300 m to a train station).
8.1 km – Mylof (Dam). This is a large mid-19th-century dam and hydropower plant, and is the beginning of the Great Brda Canal. Here one can find a camping site, and a restaurant (featuring delicious smoked trout from (allegedly) Poland’s largest trout house). Now shift to the green trail.
21.6 km – Kosobudy. A cycling path to Brusy.
24.6 km – Brusy. The town features a grand Neo-Romanesque church. It also has a train station, as well as catering facilities. In Brusy Jaglie (nearby), there is the Kashubian Cottage – the workshop of, and a now museum dedicated to Józef Chełmowski, a Kashubian artist. From here, go north along the yellow-black literary trail of “Anna Łaming.”
32.4 km – Leśno. This town is noted for its stone circles and its barrow cemetery, as well as a wooden Baroque church with an historical interior and a wooden tower that is the highest in Pomerania.
36.9 km – Wysoka Zaborska. Preserved, traditional, wooden buildings.
39.1 km – Przymuszewo. The town features a hall of memory dedicated to the Kashubian writer, Anna Łajming. From here, follow the beautiful flat road running alongside the surrounding lakes, then go through Peplin and Skoszewo, to Sominy.
48.6 km – Sominy. This is a charming summer-holiday village located upon the Somińskie and Dywańskie Lakes. It features a wooden church, a wooden sheepfold, several recreational centres and an equestrian centre. We think it is a good place to spend the night. Here starts the unmarked USBS route.
56.1 km – Studzienice. A summer-holiday village on Studzieniczno Lake.
69.6 km – Bytów. This town features a monumental Teutonic castle which currently houses the Western-Kashubian Museum, as well as a Gothic tower that was once part of an old church, the eclectic St Catherine’s Church (erected in the middle of the 19th century), St. George’s Orthodox Church (an old Evangelical church), a nice town square with historical tenement houses, and an impressive rail bridge over the Boruja River built in the 19th century.
73.0 km – Dąbie. Note!This is a difficult sandy, forest section of the trail.
80.6 km – Osieki Bytowskie. The village is the site of an agri-tourist farm that was once an old distillery. Nearby there is a manor and a park.
84.4 km – Krosnowo. Here, follow the blue “Doliny Słupii” (the Słupia Valley) trail, to Krępa Słupska.
92.3 km – Gałąźnia Mała. This is the location of the greatest and the largest hydropower plant on the Słupia River, and reveals its characteristic water-feeding pipelines. Nearby, there is the “Dolina Huczka” Reserve.
98.4 km – Konradowo. The town features the hard-to-reach Strzegomino hydropower plant, built between 1922-1924.
102.4 km – Krzynia. The location of a hydropower plant from 1926, Krzynia Lake is a noted place for recreation and leisure.
107.8 km – Dębnica Kaszubska. The village features a church from the 16th-17th century with a wattle-and-daub transept and chancel. In the village, and nearby, there are several agri-tourist lodgings. This, we think, is a good spot to spend the night.
110.6 km – Skarszów Dolny. This is the site of a hydropower station on the Skotawa River, built in 1922.
119.4 km – Krępa Słupska. The end of the Słupia Valley trail. The village is the location of a bicycle stop, as well as various didactic trails.
Note!From Krępa Słupska, you can travel to Bruskowo Wielkie, by taking the convenient asphalt-surfaced cycling routes through Słupsk (a train and urban rail connection).On your way, it is also worth going sightseeing in this town as it is full of monuments(of note are the Pomeranian Dukes’ Castle and the town hall) and see Poland’s largest collection of the works of Witkacy.
124.6 km – Kobylnica. Head north and then head towards Biekowo, by following the blue “Moszczeniczka Valley” trail.
132.1 km – Bierkowo. This is one of the more beautiful villages of the “Chequered Land”, and features the region’s noteworthy architecture. An asphalt cycling path from here goes onto Brusy.
133.1 km – Bruskowo Wielkie. This is another village that displays all the characteristic architecture of the “Chequered Land.” Nearby, we can visit Swołowo – the capital of the “Chequered Land.”
146.1 km – Charnowo. The village is noted for its 16th-century church.
153.6 – Ustka. From Ustka, go east, following the “Trail of rolled tracks.”
175.2 km – Rowy. This village is a holiday resort where one can find a Neo-Romanesque church and a very welcoming beach.
187.4 km – Smołdzino. This is a well-known summer-holiday village. It is noted for the nearby Rowokół Hill (featuring a viewing tower and a nature reserve). It is also the home of the headquarters and the Museum of the Słowiński National Park, as well as a hydropower station on the Łupawa River. Numerous accommodation and catering facilities can be met with, here.
196.4 km – Kluki. This is the location of an open-air ethnographic museum – the Museum of Slovinic Countryside. The village features a plethora of interesting farmsteads and other examples of regional rural architecture, as well as a regional tavern.
Note!The Smodzino-Główczyce section has a deplorable, muddy surface.To travel it, you should devote plenty of time and arm yourself with good humour.Clothes you can change into, can also prove useful.
204.3 km – Główczyce. The village is the location of a Neo-Gothic church and a palace.
213.0 km – Izbica. A summer-holiday village, Izbica is located in the middle of a series of marshes, on the southern shore of Łebsko Lake.
229.0 km – Łeba (PKP). The town is a large holiday resort. During the season, from here, there is a rail connection to Tricity.