Silesia – the landscape with a mining shaft
Silesia is the most urbanized region of Poland - this voivodeship is one of the smaller, in geographical terms, but it is inhabited by more than 12% of the country’s population. The diversity of the Śląskie Voivodeship makes it a perfect place for all kinds of events. Its advantages, in addition to the charms of the natural Beskid Mountains and Jura Krakowsko-Czestochowska, and the rich industrial heritage reflected in the Industrial Monuments Route, are also the easy road access and a rapidly growing hotel industry.
The Silesia Voivodeship is one of the more developed regions of the country as it goes to transport communication. Communication roads from north to south and from east to west, as well as the most important railroads cross here. Katowice International Airport in Pyrzowice handles more than 1,000,000 visitors per year.
The constantly expanding hotel accommodation and conference base ensures increasingly higher quality of service in the field of meetings industry.
The rich tourist offer of the region makes it possible to spend the time in many ways. Beskid Śląski offers excellent conditions for winter skiing, and in the summer it encourages to take the numerous hiking and biking trails. The Capital of Polish climbers - Jura Krakowsko-Czestochowska, provides excellent conditions for rock climbing, and its relief creates favourable conditions for mountain biking, quad or horseback riding.
The nineteenth century “familoki” in Nikiszowiec (Katowice) and Kolonia Zgorzelec (Bytom) attract not only filmmakers, but also the tourists seeking for the atmospheric urban landscapes. Mine shafts are turning into are art galleries, sensitive to every tremor in the artistic world. They also become adapted to hold business meetings and alternative forms of sightseeing and activities for business groups.
Unused mines are turned into underground industrial parks, museums and entertainment centres. In Zabrze, can watch the work of underground mining machinery. To the Silver Ore Mine in Tarnowskie Mountains the visitors are taken in a metal szola (cage), the sidewalks are lit with torches, and flooded corridors can be reached by boats.
In the nearby Sztolnia Czarnego Pstrąga (Black Trout Adit) there is a quite big underground stream which can also be reached by a boat. The boat crossing the black as pitch river is lit by carbide mining lamps and squealing bats serve as entertainment.
The industrial fortunes, made in the nineteenth century on coal and ores, helped to dot the landscape with mansions and parks. The Palace in Pszczyna and hunting lodge in Promnice, formerly belonging to the family of Hochberg, are among the finest and best preserved monuments in this part of Europe.
The Silesia Voivodeship specializes also in active tourism, urban obstacles are used here by amateurs of parkour, there are also places for off-road or mountain climbing. Between Błędów and Klucze there is the only natural desert in Europe, where tourist can even experience mirages.
Śląsk region cherishes traditions. Every other restaurant serves potato noodles with blue szałot (red cabbage), and during the miners’ feasts krupniok, a blood sausage, is still served. And to that a beer from one of the Silesian breweries, of course!