Košice Self-Governing Region
The territory of the Slovak Republic is divided into eight regions. Košice Self-Governing Region is situated in the south east Slovakia. Its neighbour to the north is Prešov Region and to the west that of Banská Bystrica. To the south it shares a border with Hungary and to the east with Ukraine (Schengen border of EU). Over 770 000 inhabitants live within the territory of Košice Region (6 753 km2). About one third of inhabitants live in the city of Košice – the regional capital which is also the second largest city in Slovakia.
Košice Region is geographic various. The mountains are situated mainly in the west and central part (around the city of Košice). East part is mostly flat area where it is also the lowest point of Slovakia (94 m at the river Bodrog). Several national parks and protected areas are situated within the region. The most popular is Slovak Paradise and Slovak Karst both situated in the west part. Slovak Paradise is famous mainly due to its gaps, canyons and waterfalls. Caves of Slovak Karst are listed in UNESCO national and cultural heritage list.
Cultural heritage is represented by number of castles (Spiš Castle, Krásna Hôrka, etc.), manors (Betliar, Markušovce, etc.) and historical city centres (Košice city centre including the easternmost gothic cathedral in Europe devoted to Saint Elisabeth).
In the southeast part close to Hungarian border a Tokay wine area is situated. Tokay wine with its honey colour and inimitable bouquet is the most highly-valued Slovak wines. French monarch Louis XIV. called it Vinum Regnum – Rex Vinorum (the wine of king – the king of wine).
Košice Self-Governing Region has implemented and also implements several transnational projects in cooperation with partners from different EU countries within various initiatives and programmes of EU. These projects were focused on different topics regarding the spheres of region’s activities (education, social services, healthcare, culture and tourism, transport, etc.) Participation in the BICY project is the opportunity for development of cycling and cycle-tourism through transfer of know-how from more experienced partners.