Malopolska – the Polish Pearl
It is a historical region of Poland covering the south-eastern part of the country. It is a cultural landscape of unique wealth encompassing natural and historical resources, which is attractive to tourists and offers ideal conditions for meetings in the field. The experiences guaranteed to the visitors are as varied as the landscapes of Małopolska.
The powerful Tatra Mountains and pocket-size Pieniny Mountains, the Hercules' Club (Maczuga Herkulesa) and the Dunajec river canyon (Przełom Dunajca), the Salt Chapel, the Pope cream cakes and Wawel Dragon breathing fire on request - these are only some of the attractions of the Małopolskie Voivodeship.
The capital city of the region, Kraków is not only the Wawel Castle and the St. Mary’s Basilica with the altar of linden wood carved by Wit Stwosz for 12 years, but it is also Kazimierz, the old Jewish quarter, the snobbish Salwator and surreal darkly-comic Nowa Huta district that tourist can visit in the style of the era: by the failure-prone Trabant car.
The vibe of Kazimierz (magic and a little exotic) encourages long walks, intermittent by visits in many pubs. There is plenty to explore: seven synagogues, atmospheric cemetery at the Remuh synagogue, the Baroque Church “Na Skałce” which is the resting place of the famous poet Czeslaw Miłosz.
The city also has its heroes – the Wawel Dragon and Lajkonik (the Hobby Horse). Trumpet call from the tower of St. Mary's Basilica, played every hour, is a reminder of the siege of the city by the Tartars. The melody suddenly stops because the throat of the trumpet player alarming the city, was pierced by a Tatar arrow.
Malopolska is also the land of the Polish Pope John Paul II. The city of Wadowice is visited by thousands of pilgrims eager to taste the papal cream cakes. Other specialties of Małopolska region include Kraków bagels or highland oscypki cheese.
The region offers to its guests visits to monasteries (Tyniec), shrines (Kalwaria Zebrzydowska), castles (Pieskowa Skała and Nowy Wiśnicz) and Gothic wooden churches (Binarowa, Sękowa, Lipnica Murowana, Dębno Podhalańskie). The old salt mines of Wieliczka and Bochnia were turned into the underground museums, the galleries of salt masterpieces and... sanatoriums. Many unique attractions are guaranteed by organization of conferences as well as memorable forms of sightseeing.
The mild climate and mineral wealth of Małopolska promote the health restoration. Just as nature – Alpine like Tatras, mild Beskidy and jagged Pieniny cut by the Dunajec river canyon. The region’s attractions cover also caves and rocks of the Ojcowski National Park, such as Hercules' Club, turned up-side-down by the devil at the request of Mr. Twardowski. Just for a joke... The diverse landscape is ideal for off-road activities.