Carpathian Mountains

The Carpathians (formerly: .. Carpathians, Czech:, Slovak: Karpaty and polarize, ukrain Карпати [ Karpaty ], Rumanian carpati, ungar Kárpátok, serb. Карпати [ Karpati ]. ) Are a mountain range in Central Europe, Eastern and Southeastern Europe. They form one of over 1,300 km long, 100-350 km wide, open to the west arch, which begins as a continuation of the Alps and on the northwestern edge of the Vienna Basin to the Carpathian foothills, or at Bratislava ( Pressburg ), on the rivers Morava, Nis and Timok ends in eastern Serbia.

The highest mountain in the Carpathians is the Tatra Mountains ( with the Gerlachovský stit 2655 m nm, also the highest mountain of Slovakia). It is followed by the Fagaras Massif ( Fagaras Mountains) in the Southern Carpathians ( with Moldoveanu Peak, 2,544 m, the highest mountain in Romania ). In addition to the Alps, the Carpathian Mountains form the main mountain system in Central Europe.

The Carpathians have Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Ukraine, Romania and Serbia.


The name is pre-Roman origin Carpathians. Its origin is controversial. The proposals include the Indo-European * kar - ' praise ' or Albanian karpe ' rock ' from Indo-European * (s ) ker - ' cut ' ( cf. German ' score ' and ' Kar' ). The Carpathians form is in Greek ( ó Karpátes oros [ as in Ptolemy, 2nd century AD ], tó Karpafon oros ), Roman ( Carpates montes, Carpatae ) and medieval Latin texts ( Carpati montes, Alpes Bastarnicae [ Tabula Peutingeriana ] ) mentioned and AD was for the people of Karpen in the 2nd century east of the Eastern Carpathians eponymous (or vice versa). Since the name of pre-Roman origin, are older views, according to which the name could be ChrB from the Slavic word ' ridge ', hardly tenable.

In Roman times the Carpathians were called by the Sarmatians as Montes Sarmatici. Official documents of the Kingdom of Hungary from the 13th and 14th centuries the Carpathians as Thorchal, Tarczal, or as Montes Nivium were called.


The Carpathians are separated into different parts. Usual here are two principles: on the one hand horizontally, vertically on the other hand.

Horizontal layout

This is due to the age of rock and the type of surface.

  • The Outer Carpathians stretch from Vienna and Bratislava, on the border between the Czech Republic and Slovakia, and then from the border between Slovakia and Poland (north of the mountains Malá Fatra, Tatra, Vihorlatské Hills ), then most of the Carpathians, over parts of Romania to to a point north of Bucharest. The highest mountain is the Babia Góra ( Mrs. Berg ) ( 1,725 ​​m).
  • The Inner Carpathians meet the rest of the Carpathians. For simplicity, we can say that the inside of the highest parts of the Carpathian Carpathian include ( Tatras, Low Tatras, Slovak Ore Mountains, Northern Hungarian Middle Mountains, Rodnaer Mountains, Retezatgebirge, Parang Mountains, Harghita Mountains and so on ). The Inner Carpathians are divided into the central Slovak block to the north, the southern Carpathian Ostkarpatischen block and block to the southeast, the Apuseni Mountains and in the volcanic mountains. The volcanic mountains ( Vihorlat, Bükk Munţii Calimani, Gurghiuer Mountains, Harghita Mountains, etc.) that form the innermost and youngest part of the Carpathian arch, are often spun off as a separate group (the " innermost " Carpathians).

Vertical layout

This is based on geological- tectonic, physiographic and coarse morphografischen criteria:

  • Western Carpathians: these are largely the territory of Slovakia and the neighboring regions of Austria ( north easternmost Austria from the Vienna Basin ), Czech Republic (eastern Moravia ), Poland (southern Poland, Lesser Poland part of the country ) and Hungary (northern Hungary). The border with the forest Carpathian Mountains ( Eastern Carpathians in the broader sense ) runs north-eastern Slovakia Bardejov approximately along the line - of Michalovce. The highest part of the Western Carpathians and at the same time throughout the Carpathians is the Tatra ( Gerlsdorfer peak 2655 m). The ( exterior ) Western Carpathians also include a series of mountain ranges that traditionally bear the name Beskydy. The Low Beskid ( sk: Nizke Beskydy, pl: Low Beskid ) in eastern Slovakia and Poland, however, are already among the ( exterior ) Eastern Carpathians.
  • East Carpathians (also: Eastern Carpathians, in the broadest sense): Eastern Carpathians in the broader sense: they consist geomorphologically from the Bieszczady ( group Low Beskids, Bieszczady, Bukovské Hills, the Ukrainian Galicia), the Ukrainian Carpathians ( sk: Ukrajinské Karpaty, including: Ukrajins'ki Karpaty) and the Eastern Carpathians in the strict sense. The titles of the main parts of the Eastern Carpathians are quite controversial. The Bieszczady and the Ukrainian Carpathians in the German speaking rather freely as Waldkarpaten ( sk: Poloniny, including: Lisysti Karpaty) respectively. Sometimes, however, the Carpathians also be equated with the Ukrainian Carpathians or the Bieszczady, where in the Bieszczady creates the additional problem that they themselves are not precisely defined (see Beskids ). Previously, but often even today, even the whole Eastern Carpathians are referred to in a broader sense than Waldkarpaten. If one follows - as in today's geography spread - the first above-mentioned subdivision, we obtain the following classification of the Eastern Carpathians in a broader sense: Carpathian Forest: The Forest Carpathian Mountains are located in eastern Slovakia (see above), in Poland, the Ukraine, as well as a small piece in Romania. They end up on Prisloppass in Romania. The highest elevation is the Hoverla ( Goverla, 2060 m ) in Ukraine, also the highest mountain of Ukraine.
  • Eastern Carpathians in the strict sense: These are completely on the territory of Romania, between the Prislop Pass and the Predeal Pass. By Pietro they reach 2305 m. Many mountain ranges are volcanic (see above under Inner Carpathians).

Flora and Fauna

The lower elevations of the Carpathians are forested. The tree line ranges between 1,150 m and 1,900 m. The vegetation and wildlife are similar in part to that of the Alps.

The Romanian Carpathians covers the largest still existing, closed woodland in Europe. More than a third of all in Europe or wild carnivores - brown bears, wolves and lynx - is located here. In the upper reaches of the Arges and its tributaries is (or was ) endemic to the extremely rare Gropp perch in front.

Main rivers with the respective countries of their source

In Austria and the Czech Republic:

  • March

In Poland:

  • Wisła ( Vistula )
  • San ( Saan, Sayn )
  • Wisłok ( Weisslog )
  • Oslawa ( Oslawa )
  • Wisłoka ( Witte Water)
  • Dunajec ( Dunajez )

In Slovakia:

  • Vah ( Waag )
  • Dunajec ( Dunajez )
  • Hron (Gran )
  • Ipeľ ( Eipel )
  • March
  • Nitra ( Neutra )
  • Orava ( Arwa )
  • Poprad ( Popper )
  • Turcianska ( Waag )
  • Uh ( Ukr Usch )

In Ukraine:

  • Dniester ( Nistru rumän. )
  • Prut ( rumän. Prut )
  • Seret ( Siret rumän. )
  • Tisza ( Tisza ungar, serb, Slovak:. , And Rumanian. Tisa )
  • Stry
  • Zbruch
  • Ush ( Slow Uh)

In Hungary

  • Ipeľ ( ungar Ipoly )

In Romania

  • Arges
  • Bârsa ( Burzen )
  • Bega ( serb. Begej )
  • Buzău
  • Bistrita
  • Cibin ( Zibin )
  • Dâmboviţa
  • Jiu
  • Târnava ( Kokel )
  • Squawking ( rumän. Criş, ungar Körös )
  • Mara
  • Mures
  • Moldova
  • Alt ( Olt rumän. )
  • Prut ( rumän. Prut )
  • Someş ( Somes; ungar Somes )
  • Temes ( Timiş rumän., serb.Tamiš )

In Serbia

  • Mlava
  • Pek
  • Porečka
  • Timok


In contrast to the Alps - with the exception of the Tatras and the Prahova region - the Carpathian not strongly influenced by tourism. Different regions (including Poiana Brasov, Predeal) are in the process to develop tourist centers for foreign guests.

Larger cities

  • Banská Bystrica - Slovakia
  • Bielsko- Biala ( Bielsko -Biala ) - Poland
  • Bor - Serbia, is located south of the Danube in Serbia Erzgebirge
  • Braşov (Kronstadt) - Romania
  • Bratislava - Slovakia
  • Drobeta Turnu Severin - Romania
  • Košice - Slovakia
  • Miskolc - Hungary
  • Mukachevo ( Munkács ) - Ukraine
  • Nowy Sacz ( Nowy Sacz ) - Poland
  • Ostrava - Czech Republic
  • Petrosani - Romania
  • Piatra Neamt - Romania
  • Ploiesti - Romania, located at the southern foot of the mountain
  • Poprad - Slovakia
  • Prešov - Slovakia
  • Resita - Romania
  • Sanok - Poland
  • Sibiu ( Hermannstadt) - Romania
  • Sighetu Marmaţiei - Romania
  • Suceava - Romania
  • Tschernywzy ( Chernivtsi ) - Ukraine
  • Uzhhorod - Ukraine
  • Vršac - Serbia
  • Zakopane - Poland
  • Žilina - Slovakia
  • Zlín - Czech Republic

Protection measures

In 2003, seven Carpathian countries got together and decided the Carpathian Convention under which a coordination of the protective measures to take place.

Were on May 24, 2010 in five countries with the participation of about 30 national parks and protected areas of the committed "Day of National Parks in the Carpathians " to make the area one hand, well-known, on the other hand, emphasize the privileged nature.