Wroclaw Information Guide
Wroclaw is the economic, cultural and intellectual capital of Lower Silesia. It is located in southwestern Poland about 120 kilometers from the Czech and 160 kilometers from Germany. Wroclaw is supported by an international airport, railways, highways and river ports. With a population of about 700,000 it is has active and prosperous medium and light industry, trade, and service sectors. It is also a regional education center with eight educational institutions located in the city. It has nine museums, several theaters and music centers, and a botanical garden and zoo.
Wroclaw is called the Pearl of Silesia. It sits upon more than a dozen islands and is connected by 117 bridges between the islands and the mainland. There are only three other cities in Europe that have more bridges and canals than Wroclaw. They are St. Petersburg, Amsterdam, and Venice.
Wroclaw is not only an educational and commercial hub for Poland, it is also a very popular tourist attraction. The name that it has, "The Pearl of Silesia", was given for a reason. It is an absolutely beautiful city, a city with an interesting history, and a city that you will want to visit when you come to Poland. The Wroclaw market square is one of the most historic and beautiful market squares in all of Europe. The interiors of the Gothic administration buildings in the squares are simply astonishing.
Aside from the beauty of the ancient town of Wroclaw, it is also the home to the oldest beer tavern in Europe. And it is located nowhere else but in the basement of the Wroclaw Town Hall. And it is always well supplied because next door is a brewery where you can watch the beer being brewed in brass vats. If you go to Wroclaw you must go to the beer tavern. It is called "Piwnica Swidnicka". And the saying is, "Who has not been to the "Piwnica Swidnicka" has not been to Wroclaw."
In spite of being an economic hub for the region of South Poland, Wroclaw is a city of beautiful parks and greens. In fact, Wroclaw is Poland's greenest city. The oldest and largest park was founded in the 18th century. In it are over 370 species of trees and bushes. And, in the spring, when the azaleas and rhododendrons are in bloom, the park is a blaze of color.
The city is a cultural center. There are many music festivals that keep music lovers busy all year round. So regardless of when you are in Poland, it is likely that you will be able to attend one of the famous Wroclaw music festivals. In February there is the Modern Polish Music Festival. In March there is the Famous Actors Song Festival. In May there is the Jazz On The Odra Festival. In June and July there is the Wroclaw Non Stop that will keep you busy attending shows and events.
Wroclaw is a city of beauty where you can find some very unique attractions. The world famous Panorama of Raclawicka is housed in the great rotunda where you can see the 120 meter long painting of the battle between the Polish insurgents and the Russians. The panorama, painted in the 19th Century found its way to Wroclaw during World War II and has stayed there since. It is one of the biggest tourist attractions of the city.
The Raclawicka Panorama - Poland's Largest Painting Is In Wroclaw
The famous victory of insurgents led by General Tadeusz Koswciuszko against the Russian army at Raclawice is 120 meters long. It is on display in Wroclaw.
The painting was done in the late 19th Century by Wojciech Kossak and Jan Styka. It was first displayed in Lvov. After World War II, it was brought to Wroclaw. The local authorities did not want to offend the Red Army that was stationed nearby. With a painting that depicted a Russian defeat. So plans were made to send the panorama to Raclawice or to cut it into pieces. As it turns our, the painting stay win Wroclaw and today it is one of the gig tourist attractions of the city.
The painting is now housed in a rotunda. You stand on a raised platform in the center and can view the painting in all its beauty.
If you go to Wroclaw for any reason at all, you just have to see this painting.
The most beautiful part of the town is a place of peace and quite. In that place are some of Europe's most interesting pieces of religious architecture. Evenings are particularly spectacular when gas lamps light the area and illuminate the most interesting parts of the buildings.
When Silesians settled on the island in the 7th century, they built a palace and stately church - Saint Martin's Church. In the 14th century they built the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist whose majestic towers offer you the chance to get a panoramic view of old Wroclaw. The Cathedral is today's seat of the local Roman Catholic authorities.
The Museum of the Archdiocese is something that you might find interesting if you like either history or curiosities. It is has Egyptian mummies, historical relics and the 13th century manuscript which, though in Latin, contains what is thought to be the first written Polish sentence.