Stage 13 : A mystic Poland to be discovered

Stage 13 : A mystic Poland to be discovered.

CENTRAL ROUTE

Stage 13/24 - 300 kms


0 km Czestochowa

63 kms Bytom

49 Kms Oswiecim

75 kms Ojcow

113 kms Kielce

carte Czestochowa a Kielce

Find a mystic Poland in Częstochowa : The most pilgrimage place

Częstochowa lies among the scenic Jurassic rocks of Krakow-Częstochowa Upland, topped by the ruins of medieval castles. But for most of the Poles, Częstochowa is associated with the Jasna Góra monastery and the icon of the Black Madonna, known for many miracles.  The shrine is known as one of the world’s best pilgrimage sites, but its imposing architecture also draws many tourists. Czestochowa plays a vital role for Catholic Poles, being a kind of spiritual capital for them. The cult status of the Jasna Gora monastery, one of the Christian world’s most important pilgrimage places, has kept growing with the site’s unique history. It has become a symbolic foundation of Polish identity and the Roman Catholic religion. The Czestochowa sanctuary is also an exceptional monument of the 15th century architecture, with later the Renaissance and Baroque alternations. A great number of pilgrims and tourists come to the city.

Bytom : a both commercial and tourist city

BYTOM - Poland

BYTOM - Poland © Brigitte Bohnhorst - Fotolia.com

Bytom is a tourist city in Silesia in southern Poland. It is located in the Silesian Highlands, on the Bytomka River. Trade is one of the main pillars of Bytom’s economy. A city with a long tradition of trade, Bytom has well fulfilled its new post-industrial role. In Bytom’s centre and mainly around Station Street and the market square, there is the largest concentration of shop owners registered in the county. In the spring of 2010, 60 metres from the Market Square on a new square between the square of Kosciuszko and Jainty, Piekarska and Dzieci Lwowskich streets, a new commercial and entertainment centre called “Agora” was built by the Scandinavian company Braaten & Pedersen. In 2007, Bytom and its neighbours created the Upper Silesian Metropolitan Union, Poland’s largest urban centre.

Oswiecim : a town rich in history

Oswiecim is a town in the Lesser Poland, in southern Poland, located 50 kilometres west of Krakow. Oswiecim has a rich history, which dates back to the early days of the Polish State. It is one of Poland’s oldest castellan gords. The town was destroyed in 1241 during the Mongol invasion of Poland. Around 1272 the newly rebuilt Oswiecim was granted a municipal charter based on Lwówek Śląski’s model. The charter was confirmed on 3 September 1291. After World War I, the town became a part of the second Polish Republic’s Krakow Voivodeship. Until 1932, Oswiecim was the seat of a county, but on 1 April 1932, the County of Oswiecim was divided between the County of Wadowice, and the County of Biala Krakowska.

Auschwitz-Birkenau

Auschwitz-Birkenau was Nazi Germany’s largest concentration camp. Located in Southern Poland, it obtained its name from the neighbouring town of Oswiecim. The complex consisted of three main camps: Auschwitz I – the administrative centre, Auschwitz II (Birkenau), an extermination camp, and Auschwitz III (Monowitz), a labour camp. A tour of Auschwitz-Birkenau gives you the opportunity to learn more about the holocaust and to see one of the most horrifying places. During the visit, you will be able to see the permanent exhibition and original buildings on the ground of the principal camp (Auschwitz). You should plan a long time for this visit of remembrance in honour of all these victims.

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Ojców : a dream destination for tourists, ruins and nature are connected

OJCOW - Poland

OJCOW - Poland © Doin Oakenhelm - Fotolia.com

Ojców is a village in the Krakow County, in southern Poland.  It is one of the sights of the Eagle Nests Trail, as there are the ruins of a Gothic castle near the village.  The village is where the authorities of the Ojców National Park have their headquarters. Visitors should admire the natural exceptional beauty of the surrounding landscape of Poland’s former capital. Due to its proximity, the Ojców National Park is one of the easiest outings to undertake in one day and certainly one of the most rewarding.

Ocjowski National Park

The Ocjowski National Park was established on 14 January 1956. It has an area of 1890 ha occupied by forests. It is the second smallest among Poland’s national parks. The Ocjowski National Park’s wealth are the white limestone cliffs containing countless caves, formed by the action of water erosion, the rich plant and animal life, an unusual landscape made up of canyons up to 120 m deep. The park’s museum, located in Ocjow, houses a rich collection depicting the region’s flora, fauna, geological samples and archaeological finds. The village of Ocjow, with the ruins of a castle and nearby the Pieskowa Skala Castle, is one of the tourist centers located within the park’s boundaries.

The park encompasses the most beautiful fragments of the Krakow-Wielun Upland. It includes the Pradnik and Saspowska Valleys and a number of side ravines. The view on the Pradnik Valley, offering the best viewpoints such as the Okopy Hill and some at the bottom of the valleys, is memorable. The most famous one is undoubtedly the view of Hercules’ Club with the Pieskowa Skala Castle in the foreground. The scenery includes a characteristic lone standing 25 meter high rock, which owes its name to the shape, with the Renaissance castle, perched and hidden in the green trees.

Historic center of Krakow (on the road about 25 km from Ocjow)

Krakow’s urban planning, an outstanding example of medieval architecture, is based on four core areas namely, the centre, around the market square; the Wawel, the hill inhabited since the Palaeolithic era and the site of the imperial palace; the urban district of Kazimierz; and the Stradom quarter. The historic center of Krakow, Poland’s former capital, lies at the foot of the Wavel Royal Castle.  The 13th century merchants’ town boasts Europe’s largest market square and many historical houses, palaces and churches lavishly decorated. Further evidence of the town’s fascinating history is given by the remnants of the 14th century fortifications and the medieval site of Kazimierz with its ancient synagogues, in the southern part of town, the Jagellonian University and the Gothic cathedral where the kings of Poland were buried.

Wieliczka salt mine (about 15 km from Krakow)

The Wieliczka and Bochnia salt mines are located on the same geological rock salt deposit in southern Poland. Situated near each other, they functioned in parallel and continuously from the 13th century until the late 20th century, representing one of the oldest and most important European industrial operations. Both mines form a large ensemble of early galleries which extend to great depths. The residual excavations have been altered and turned into chapels, workshops and warehouses. A significant ensemble of statues and decorative elements sculpted into the rock salt has been preserved in both mines, along with a set of tools and machinery. An underground tourist route exists since the early 19th century.

Discovering Kielce : peace into cross Mountains

Kielce is a city in central Poland with some 204 891 inhabitants. It lies in the middle of the Holy Cross Mountains, on the Silnica River’s banks, in the northern part of the historical Lesser Poland. Kielce became an important centre of limestone mining.

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