Štrbské Pleso

Founded in: 1872
Altitude: 1346 m
Population: 85
Distance from the village Štrba: 12 km

The construction of the country´s main railway line the Košice-Bohumín railway in 1871was the main contributory factor in founding the settlement of Štrbské Pleso. The railway played an important role in the development of tourism in this previously not easily accessible area.

The beginnings of the future resort at Štrbské Pleso were modest indeed. In 1872 the first two buildings on the southeast shore of the mountain lake of the same name were built under the patronage of Jozef Szentivány the then owner of the estate by carpenters from Liptov region under the supervision of foreman Ján Zuškin of Štrba. These formed the foundations of a new hamlet. Soon more lodging houses and villas were erected and started to offer also spa treatments. Guests begun to flock to Štrbské Pleso for the sanative environment of this alpine resort and fresh air and the settlement took on a character of a spa town towards the end of 1990.
The transport of guests from the Štrba station up to the lake and cottages on its banks was handled by carriages from Štrba. The road from Štrbské Pleso was also used to supply ice for cold drinks.

In 1896 a steam mountain rack railway line connecting the Štrba station with Štrbské Pleso was constructed. The line helped to speed up the development of tourism in this area. The village of Štrba built up roads, water main and other necessary infrastructure. Štrbské Pleso depended on the Post Office in Štrba until 1904. The delivery of mail in both directions was administered by forester Ján Sýkora of Štrba, including in winter months as the first local skier on his self-made skis.

The first simple lodging houses were gradually complemented or replaced by luxurious buildings and hotels on the banks of the lake which later turned into health spas.
Štrbské Pleso experienced boom in 1970 when it was hosting the FIS Nordic Skiing World Championships. During this period the previously shut down steam cog railway was replaced by a new electric one. The FIS, Panorama, Baník and Patria hotels were built to accommodate the world championships. Štrbské Pleso is a major centre for tourism and winter sports and the highest located tourist and curative-stay resort in the High Tatras Mountains. It is situated on the southern shore of the Štrbské Pleso Mountain Lake at an altitude of 1,346 meters above sea level.

Štrbské Pleso was always an integral part the village of Štrba and a significant part of the territory was owned by inhabitants of the village. After WWII under Communist rule, however, efforts to deprive the subtatras villages of their land and incorporate them into a new self-governing borough of High Tatras begun. Despite the protests the new town of High Tatras was formed in 1949. After the 1990 Štrba was in a dispute over the territory of Štrbské Pleso and urged its restitution. On May 3rd 2007 the long-standing territorial claim dispute was successfully concluded when the Supreme Court ruled in favour of Štrba. Štrbské Pleso thus became a part of the village of Štrba territory and its future development will be carried out under the governance of Štrba and will be interlinked with the other local parts of the village.

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