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The Tuchola Forest (Polish: Bory Tucholskie; Kashubian: Techolscz Bore; German: Tuchler or Tucheler Heide)
The Tuchola Forest is a large forest near the town of Tuchola in northern Poland, and lies between the Brda and Wda Rivers. The area was formed during the last glacial age by the Scandinavian Glacier and is covered with low hills and sandy plains. These plains are diversified by numerous dunes and more than 900 post-glacial lakes 40 of which are bigger than 2 acres. The lakes are long and narrow, creating water channels of which the longest is 17 km. With 1,200 km˛ of dense spruce and pine forest, the area is a second largest forest after Bialowieza Forest in Poland and one of the biggest forests in Central Europe. The largest towns in the area are Czersk, Tuchola, Czarna Woda, Brusy and Chojnice.
Since 1996 part of the area has been designated as the Tuchola Forest National Park, covering 46.13 square kilometres (17.81 sq mi). There are also still unchanged spots protected as natural reserves. There are more than 20 lakes in the Park, some of them are pristine, of crystal-clear waters (e.g. Gacno Wielkie and Male, Nierybno, Gluche). Numerous species (around 25) of fish can be found here as well as European beaver, boars, foxes, deer, fallow deer, polecats and badgers. The national park is a haven for birds - there are 144 species of them, including crane, herons, white and black storks, sea eagle and eagle owl. The symbol of the Park - wood grouse - until recently was common in the area, especially in the Forest District of Klosnowo. Now, authorities of the national park, plan to reintroduce this bird. A particularly important part of fauna are bats - several species of them thrive in the Park.
Most important tourist centers of Tuchola Wilderness are located by the Charzykowskie and Karsinskie lakes. In recent years agro-tourim has become popular - e.g. in the village of Swornegacie. The Brda river is a kayaking trail. Charzykowy is famous as the birthplace of Polish inland yachting. The Charzykowy lake offers good yachting both in summer and in winter. There are several bicycle trails which let tourists get acquainted with Tuchola Wilderness’ attractions. Also, the Wilderness is crossed by numerous walking trails - among them the Kaszubski Trail from Chojnice to Wiela.