Polish wooden architecture

Warsaw (1) – Białowieża (1) – Lublin (1) – Kraków (5)

4 polish wooden archit

Poland, covered by large forests, is a country where wooden architecture developed by necessity. Because of the easy availability of wood and its perfect adaptation to our climatic conditions, Poland boasts a number of well-preserved historical wooden buildings. It is also one of the few places in Europe where traditional wooden construction techniques are still in use.

DAY 1 – arrival in Warsaw. Afternoon panoramic tour of the Polish capital city. Dinner & overnight in Warsaw.

DAY 2 – morning visit to Wilanów Palace and Park. Lunch in Wilanów. Journey to Białowieża. Visit to the Orthodox sanctuary of Grabarka – a place of pilgrimage since the 13th century – and the Church of the Holy Trinity in Hajnówka. Overnight in Białowieża.

DAY 3 – morning tour of the Land Of Open Shutters – 3 unique wooden villages, situated in the eastern part of Poland near Bialowieża Forest. The rustic decorations of the buildings are reminiscent of the style of Russian bucolic architecture. The first village we visit is Trześcianka with a the 15/16th century Orthodox Church; Soce – which as an Orthodox chapel from the beginning of the 20th century and a number of buildings with highly ornate facades and shutters; Puchły, a picturesque wooden village with an Orthodox church, which has beautiful carvings above and below the windows. The Land of Open Shutters is also a point on the Podlasie Stork Trail due the number of birds that nest there. Lunch en route. Overnight in Lublin.

DAY 4 – morning tour of Lublin – Old Town and the Castle’s Chapel of the holy Trinity. Lunch en route. Journey to Baranów Sandomierski – visit to the Renaissance castle, one of the grandest residences in Poland. On the way to Kraków visit to Zalipie – a village where wooden cottages are decorated with traditionally painted, floral motifs. Transfer to Kraków and overnight.

DAY 5 – morning guided tour of the Old Town of Kraków: Market Square, St. Mary’s Gothic church with its famous altar and Wawel Hill. Lunch at a local restaurant. In the afternoon visit to Wieliczka Salt Mine – with perfectly preserved wooden supports and wooden machinery dating back to the 18th century. Overnight in Kraków.

DAY 6 – in the morning transfer to the open-air Museum of Wooden Architecture in Babice – recreation of village with original 18th and 19th century wooden houses, church and village buildings. Lunch at an 18th century inn. Excursion to Wadowice – the late John Paul II’s hometown and visit to his childhood home, as well as the parish church where he was baptised. Continuation to Lancokorona – a typical small town with wooden eaved cottages around the Market Square. Overnight in Kraków.

DAY 7 – in the morning trip to Stary Sącz – visit to this small town and monastery – travel along “the Wooden Orthodox Churches Route” – beautiful 17th and 18th century constructions in Andrzejówka, Milik, Muszyna, Powroźnik, Krynica, built by Łemks and Boyks, the Ruthenian minority who populated this region till their tragic deportation in 1949. Late lunch in Krynica – a spa town with a 19th century bathhouse and other buildings built in Swiss style. Travel back to Kraków and overnight.

DAY 8 – full day trip to Zakopane – the capital city of the Polish Tatra mountains. En route stop in Zubrzyca Górna with an open-air ethnographic museum and park. Drive to Chochołów – a wooden village. In Zakopane promenade along the old part of the town with its wooden church, ancient cemetery and country houses built at the end of 19th century, in the unique Zakopane style – the only example of a wooden architectural style being designed on a modern drawing board and yet adopted by the local population. The style was inspired by folk art, sumptuous highland designs with very elaborate finishes and abundant decorations in timber. Zakopane’s style is especially visible in the construction of the villas in the town and its vicinity. The oldest and the most renowned examples of this style in architecture are: Villa Koliba – the first house built in Zakopane style, the Jaszczurówka Chapel which invariably attracts visitors with its exceptional charm and beauty, Dom Pod Jedlami and the Tatras Museum on Krupówki. Lunch en route at a local inn. Overnight in Kraków.

DAY 9 – transfer to Kraków and departure.

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