A place to showcase some of my photographic journeys
Tenement houses in Zamość
Tenement house in Zamość
The tenement houses with the arcades are the most characteristic features of architecture of Zamość. Up to 55 tenement houses were preserved in Zamość, and this is the biggest number of that kind of buildings in Poland. The arcades were introduced by the main designer of the city Bernardo Morando. Morando also established the general design of the tenement house. Apart from arcades, attics and wide, horizontal frieze under the windows on the first floor were obligatory.
One of 55 beautiful Renaissance tenement houses is called Rektorska Pharmacy. The Rektorska Pharmacy is one of the oldest pharmacies in Poland. It was founded in 1609 by Szymon Piechowicz, a physician, professor and Rector of the Zamojska Academy. Each of successive owners was a pharmacist and the pharmacy has never stopped to sell medicines to residents, remaining at the same location, in a corner of the Great Market Square. At the end of the 19th century the pharmacy ran Hygienic Station, i.e. one of the first laboratories which tested the quality of food and water.
Visitors can learn more about the rich history of the Rektorska Pharmacy by visiting its Exhibition Room. (Lern more: Wikipedia)
Malbork is a town in northern Poland in the Żuławy region (Vistula delta). There is located an impressive Medieval castle. This biggest brick castle in the world and the largest castle of the Gothic period is one of Europe's most imposing fortresses - "the largest pile of bricks north to Alps".
The castle in Malbork was built by the Teutonic Order after the conquest of Old Prussia. The work was started in 1274 on the southeastern bank of the river Nogat. The fortress was named Castle of Mary - Marienburg in German. In 1309 the castle and the city became the capital city of Teutonic Order's state. High Castle surrounded by moats and walls and became the office of Grand Masters and the order's highest officials. Middle Castle become house of lower rank brothers and guests. There was also a Great Refectory infirmary for older and ill brothers. In 14th and 15th century was build third segment - Lower Castle - armory, granary, storehouse, as well as St. Lawrence chap…
Saffron conspiracies (Crocus scepusiensis) (Polish: krokus spiski or szafran spiski) is a species in Family Iridaceae. The name of "Crocus" is derived from Greek word "kroke" (thread, floss). This beautiful violet-colored flower occurs in the Western Carpathians. In Poland crocus flower most often grows in the Tatra Mountains and also in the other mountains e.g. Żywiec Beskids (mountainsides of Pilsko and Wielka Racza), Gorce, Beskid Wyspowy, Small Beskid (Leskowiec). Sometimes we encounter white crocus - albino. Saffron conspiracies blooms usually around 2-3 weeks. It is strictly protected in Poland.
Not more than 34 km north of Warsaw, on the territory of Nowy Dwór Mazowiecki, in the fork of the Vistula River, the Narew River and Wkra River, is located Modlin Fortress, one of the largest fortresses in Poland and all of Europe. The fortress is a monument of defensive architecture of international significance. In Europe, only Verdun can compete with it.
History of Modlin Fortress
The first fortifications around Modlin were built during the Swedish invasion in the 17th century, but the beginnings of the most impressing fortress in Europe falls in the first half of 19th century when Napoleon Bonaparte recognised the strategic importance of the area. In 1807 Emperor of the French ordered the construction of new fortifications. His military architects began to expand the fortress to both sides of the River Narew at the estuary into the Vistula to secure his leadership in Eastern Europe.
In 1813, after French crushing defeat during the war with Russian Empire, Modlin became the Kingd…
The Old Town of Poznań - a bit of history
The original settlement of Poznań was on the river island of Ostrów Tumski and dates from at least the 9th century. It was a site, where along with the development of Christianity Polish statehood was born (read more at: The capital city of Poznań). In the 13th century, there was erected a castle on the left bank of the river Warta and the new settlement was established. Poznań received city charter in 1253.
The Old Market Square is the central point of this medieval origin settlement. It was originally laid out in the 13th century, and many changes to architectural layout and style were made over the centuries. There is a group of buildings in the central part of the square, chief of which is the Old Town Hall. It is the city's main tourist attractions. It was built in the late 13th century and was rebuilt, after the great fire in Poznań in the 16th century. The former seat of the city council nowadays houses the Poznań History Museum. Th…
Fortified churches in Transylvania
Romania is a beautiful and very interesting country. You can admire there magnificent scenery and a lot of splendid architectural monuments. Very interesting and picturesque architectural objects are fortified churches in Transylvania region. There are more than 100 of well preserved fortified churches from the 13th to 16th centuries.
Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Villages with Fortified Churches in Transylvania are seven villages founded by the Transylvanian Saxons. They are characterised by the great variety of architectural styles. They are dominated by fortified churches and characterised by a specific settlement pattern that has been preserved since the late Middle Ages (see also: Fortified Church in Hărman, Romania).
Fortified church in Viscri - UNESCO World Heritage Site
One of the most interesting Saxon fortified churches is located in the village of Viscri. The village is located in the centre of Romania, close to Sighisoara (40km)…
A settlement in the area of present-day Łódź had been first established in the 14th century, however, the real development of Łódź started with the industrial era. At the beginning of the 19th century Łódź became one of the Europe`s biggest and fastest growing textile industry centre (read more at: Promised Land - Łódź, Poland).
The rapid development of the city in the second half of the 19th century was brought about by the rise of enormous industrialist fortunes. The city residences became expressions of the riches and power of the manufacturers. They were usually situated next to the owner’s factory (read more at: Former industrial empire of Izrael Poznański, Łódź). The most impressive factory and residential buildings in Łodź are the monumental edifices located in Ogrodowa Street. There is the former industrial complex founded by Israel Kalamowicz Poznański and the largest manufacturer’s residence in Poland.
The beginnings of the firm go back to the 1860s, when Kalman Poznański, …
In the small town of Choroszcz, not far from Bialystok (northeastern Poland) is located a charming small palace. The palace was the summer residence of the crown hetman and castellan of Kraków, Jan Klemens Branicki (1689-1771), a powerful Polish aristocrat. The palace was built on an artificial island, which is surrounded by canals modelled after those at Versailles.
The construction of the Baroque residence at Choroszcz lasted from 1745 almost until Branicki's death in 1771. A fire destroyed it in 1915, and the palace was reconstructed only much later during the years 1961-1973, and then made into a Museum of Palace Interiors in Choroszcz - branch of the Museum of Podlasie in Bialystok.
The ground floor, where the Branicki family once had its quarters, and the first floor, where the guest rooms used to be, were rebuilt for use today as exhibition rooms, where one can see period furniture, for example, from Rococo to sets in the style of Louis XVI. The interiors are decorated wi…
Poland is a relatively low-lying country. More than 90% percent of its territory lies ca 300 m above sea level, but there are three main mountain ranges located mainly in the southern part of the country. They run in a direction from west to east and include the Carpathian Mountains (Carpathians), the Sudety Mountains (Sudetes), and the Świętokrzyskie Mountains (Holy Cross Mountains). All of these mountain ranges, except for the Świętokrzyskie Mountains form a natural southern border of Poland.
Sudetes (Sudety Mountains)
The Sudetes stretches from eastern Germany along the south-western Poland. The highest peak of the range is Śnieżka in the Karkonosze Mountains (Giant Mountains) on the Czechia-Poland border, which is 1,603 metres in elevation. The Sudetes are usually divided into Eastern Sudetes (in Poland are two ranges: Golden Mountains and Śnieżnik Mountains), Central Sudetes (in Poland: Bardzkie Mountains, Bystrzyckie Mountains, Orlickie Mountains, Stołowe Mountains (Table Mount…
There are 25 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Romania. Seven of this list are Saxon villages in southern Transylvania. They are dominated by their fortified churches, which illustrate building styles from the 13th to the 16th century. One of them is Hărman Fortified Church. I have already presented the beautiful village of Viscri, which houses one of the fortified churches - also listed on the UNESCO list (click to read my article about Viscri). The church in Hărman is just as beautiful and it displays the typical characteristics of a fortified church. The village of Hărman (Honigburg in German, meaning Honey Castle) is located some 10 km east of Brașov, in the Burzenland region of southeastern Transylvania. When visiting Brașov, you must visit Hărman (and Prejmer too) (click to read my article about Medieval fortifications in Brașov).
Hărman was established and long inhabited mainly by Transylvanian Saxons. The church at Hărman dates back to 1240 when Saxons built the original struct…