The Old Town – Market Square

ws-unesco The Old Town was completely destroyed during the World War II. It is reborn now. Because of a very strict reconstruction the historic center of Warsaw – the Old Town –
is located at the World Heritage List of Unesco.

 

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The Market Square is very beautiful, colorful and picturesque, with its lively night spots and hidden alleys. In the medieval times it was the main square of the city as well as a cultural and political center.

 

In the middle of the square stands the monument of the Little Mermaid – the symbol of the city. According to the legend, the mermaid lived in the Vistula river, disturbing the fishermen. They decided to capture her. Fishermen kept the mermaid tied in a shed. One of the inhabitants, delighted by her beauty and voice, gave her freedom. The Little Mermaid, made the promise to protect the city. That’s why she is holding a sword and a shield.

 

The Old Town – the Castle and the Royal Castle Square

 

 

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The Royal Castle was the residence of the Dukes of Mazovia and became a royal residence after transferring the capital from Krakow to Warsaw. During the World War II it was completely razed to the ground and later reconstructed in the 70’s. There’s a museum now. Every day at a 11:15 am you can hear a special music based on popular Warsaw’s songs from the highest tower called Clock Tower. It is played on a trumpet from one of the tower’s window.

 

The attractions of the museum are original paintings of Bernardo Bellotto, also known as „Canaletto”, the court painter of the last Polish king.
Paintings were so detailed that they helped to reconstruct the city after The Second War damages.

 

ws-zygm Near the Royal Castle stands the Column of King Sigismund III Waza, one of the oldest secular ancient monuments in Warsaw. It was built by Sigismund’s son – Wladyslaw IV to give tribute to his father. The legend said that if the king lowered his sword, the city would be the subject to a tragic event.

 

Royal Park „Łazienki”

 

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Picturesque park along the path of the Royal Route, the summer residence of the last Polish king Stanislaw August Poniatowski. In the middle of the park there is the famous Palace on the Isle – „abode of kings”, miraculously survived by the destruction of Nazi’s, now a witness to a bygone time.

 

There are many beautiful and interesting buidings such as Amphitheatre, White Pavilion, Old Orangery, designed by famous 18th century architects. In the upper part of the park there is a monument of Frederic Chopin. Every Sunday, during the summer season, near the monument beautiful concerts take place performed by great pianists from all over the world.

 

Wilanów – Villa Nova

 

 

wilanow Majestic baroque palace owned by King John III Sobieski, was the king’s beloved summer residence, better known as Villa Nova. Fortunately, the palace was not destroyed during the War and it’s rich interior is today open to visitors.

 

 

 Traces of Fryderyk Chopin

 

 

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A Polish Romantic poet Cyprian Kamil Norwid wrote:
„Born in Warsaw, Pole from the heart, citizen of the world for talent”

 

The composer left the country when he was 20. He died in France nineteen years later. Before his death he asked his sister to take his heart to Warsaw, to his homeland. And so she did.
Today, the urn with his heart is kept in the Church of the Holy Cross.

 

Chopin spent half of his short life in Warsaw, was educated here, gave his first concerts, and met his first love. There are many places associated with his activities such as the Church of the Visitation, where he played the organ during school’s services, the Presidential Palace where he gave his first concert at the age of eight, cafes where he met friends and Czapski’s Palace which was his last flat before leaving Poland.

 

In 2010 the city of Warsaw prepared a number of celebrations, concerts and other attractions to honor the bicentenary of the birth of our famous composer. The most popular are interactive benches remaining Chopin’s places where everyone can listen to the part of Chopin’s opuses.

 

Another very popular attraction is the Chopin’s museum designed by Italian architect from Milan. The museum possesses the largest collection of composer’s memorabilia: his correspondence, documents, important editions of works, manuscripts and even paintings.

 

In 1999 the part of museum’s collection was inscribed in the UNESCO register „The Memory of the World”

 

 

 The Warsaw Uprising Museum

 

 

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Warsaw uprising began on the first day of August in 1944 and lasted 63 days. It was the biggest and most tragic time in the Polish history during the Second World War. Our insurgents were trying to take over the city from a very well armed and numerous Nazi’s Army. Despite an overwhelming superiority and brutality of the methods used against the insurgents, the German troops found a strong resistance everywhere. During the Warsaw Uprising about 200,000 inhabitants met their death and almost half were murdered. After Uprising’s capitulation the whole population – about 500.000 people – were expelled from Warsaw. The city became forlorn and Nazi’s Army began to destroy the capital.

 

The Warsaw Uprising Museum is located in a former power station in the Wola district. The museum gathers all uprising remainings – photographs and historical artifacts. The recordings of insurgents remembrances are the most important. In the museum area people can find the reproduction of a pre-war street in Warsaw, bullet holes and written exhortation resist on the walls, can hear heartbeat of the city, can walk through sewer which insurgents used for communication.

 

The most spectacular attraction is the reconstructed Liberator plane which supplied food and weapons to the insurgents

 

*Do not miss the movie „City of Ruins”, a 3D reconstruction of the ruined city in 1944, the work of Polish director Tomek Baginski.

 

 The Prague district

 

Described in many paper guides – the arts district, modern and rediscovered after years of darkness. Prague became the part of Warsaw in the end of the 18th century. It was a multicultural area where Catholics, Orthodoxies and Jews lived together.

 

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 The district wasn’t destroyed during the War – buildings survived and a lot of details with them such as antique lanterns. Quite amazing are small, courtyard’s shrines with handmade Madonnas in it.

Prague, because of its style, is often used for photo shoots, commercials and music videos. In 2002 Roman Polanski chose the district for his world famous film „The Pianist”

 

 

The Palace of Culture and Science – „The Monster”

 

Loved and hated by the people – „the Monster” .
It’s visible in the center of the capital. The highest building in Warsaw with an area of ??123 084 m2.
Built in 1955 as a gift to Poland from the Soviet Union, was called „Jozef Stalin Palace of Culture and Science”, as the name of the creator of this initiative. Now, it houses museums, theaters, cinemas, art galleries, exhibitions.

The Palace of Culture and Science The main attraction is the terrace on the 30th floor with a beautiful panoramic view of Warsaw.

 

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