Poland unforgettable memories

Attractions in małopolskie region

Dunajec River Gorge

The mountains, the river and the beauty of plants growing around the route make the cruise through the Dunajec River Gorge an unforgettable adventure. You take the special raft (used in the past to transport wooden blocks to the sea ports) and your guide is a raftsman called "flisak", dressed in a traditional suit, who directs the raft using a long stick. The water is deep and not always calm, so the emotions are guaranteed as well as breathtaking views. The Dunajec river leads us between the rocks of the Pieniny mountains, the forests and meadows. We can admire the wild nature of both Polish and Slovakian land, because the route follows the country border.

More: http://www.pieninypn.pl/index.html?id=30520&location=f&msg=1&lang_id=UK

 

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Kraków / Cracow

Asking any Pole which of the cities in Poland is the most attractive means hearing: "Cracow". Why? The answer is simple - because of its history, monuments and a specific spirit. So specific that it is enough to walk through the main square to feel it: then you pass Sukiennice, an old market hall, you hear a bugle-call played every hour from the tower of St. Mary's church and you can enjoy the climate of neighbouring streets, among which Floriańska street with various artists presenting their pictures, is unforgettable. But you may also explore the unique Jewish district of Kazimierz, the Barbakan castle or the former residence of the kings of Poland - The Wawel Castle and Cathedral, which reminds the times of Cracow's being the capital. Placed on the bank of the Vistula river, the castle is also famous (especially among children) for the legend of Wawel Monster, whose figure stands near the residence, belching real fire. Cracow is also the city where John Paul II was a bishop for many years, so finding his steps in different parts of the city (eg. the God's mercy sanctuary of Łagiewniki) is not difficult.
More: http://www.krakow.pl/en/turystyka/?id=wieza.html

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Wieliczka Salt Mine

135 m under the ground the old salt mine presents its treasure to all visitors. Plenty of complicated corridors lead you to salt lakes, museums and finally to the great chapel of Saint Kinga - a gigantic room where everything is made of salt. Beautiful salt monuments, salt floor, salt walls and even salt chalendiers. Visiting Wieliczka, which is on the UNESCO list, is also a small journey in time, it takes you back to the previous centuries when Cracow was a capital of Poland and Wieliczka used to be a strategic mine.
More: http://www.kopalnia-wieliczka.pl

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Auschwitz

"Arbeit macht frei" (Work gives freedom) is written on the old gate of the Auschwitz concentration camp.
The silence shouts here. Over a milion people were killed here during the second world war. Treated with cruelty, they were working and dying under inhumane conditions, mainly in gas chambers. Nowadays few buildings and a museum in this calm place only remind what happened nearly seventy years ago, what was the tragedy directed by German Nazis.
Auschwitz is one of thirteen UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Poland. In 2007, the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO officially declared the camp at Oswiecim as the Auschwitz - Birkenau German Nazi Concentration and Extermination Camp (1940-1945).

More: http://en.auschwitz.org.pl/h/

To see BBC Animated guide to Auschwitz click here

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Zakopane & Tatra Mountains

Despite the fact that Poland has a few places where you can do winter sports, anyone asked about "the winter capital of Poland", would probably answer "Zakopane". Literally, the name of the town means: "covered by snow" and there is much truth in it. Surrounded by the Tatra mountains, Zakopane has always more severe climat than northern parts of the country. Famous for its highland tradition, it offers special food (especially widely known "oscypki" cheese), clothes and music. In summer and autumn you can enjoy walking through mountain routes and for those who like more commercial style of spending free time, crowded Krupówki street with its shops and restaurants would be a solution.
More: http://www.ezakopane.pl/poland/

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Wadowice

A place where the most famous Pole in the world was born. John Paul II, a great pope and a great man spent his childhood in this small town. We can follow his steps here and visit the church he used to go to and the house he was brought up in. And finally we can taste the cake he used to eat in a local café before his baccalaureate. The cake which has become famous since his sentimental pilgrimage to Wadowice a few years ago.

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Kalwaria Zebrzydowska

Close to Wadowice, Kalwaria is also connected with John Paul II. Although the place is mainly famous for its 17th century calvary. In the past the pilgrimers were allowed to grant an indulgence without visiting Jerusalem. Now Kalwaria Zebrzydowska welcomes 1 mln pilgrimers every year. 42 chapels and churches placed in mountains, surrounded by the forest create spaecific atmosphere and impression that the places has a special quality all its own.

Together with the Observants monastery and The Angelic Saint Mary's basilica the whole calvary is one of the UNESCO monuments.

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