The next one from my ‘Tour de Pologne’ series is Poznan. Although these days I do not have that much time to travel in Poland. From time to time I pop in for a few days here and there. Usually to serve as a city guide to all my foreigner friends coming over to discover my homeland.
Poznan is my University city. I always get slightly sentimental about my student years here. That was a crazy time of my life. And I’m not talking about the never-ending parties. The Law–Med-themed parties are never to be forgotten! The same as the Logic lecturer who decided about your grade by doing a lottery.
Poznan isn’t high on most people’s travel agenda. You can be pleasantly surprised. You may lose your heart for Poland’s most popular small-big city. The cobbled streets are filled with architectural treasures. Which stand dreamily on both sides of the fast-flowing Warta River. There are a few essential sights which one can’t miss.
Stary Rynek, the colourful and picturesque Old Town Square. And its characteristic merchant houses with ornamental trimmings is the centre of city life. Both during the day and night. Impressive with a delightful Renaissance City Hall and a famous clock with two ram, the symbols of Poznan, which at noon every day knock heads.
Wander around the small, cobbled streets of the Old Town. You will find yourself discovering the most outstanding churches. Neat parks. Cozy cafes. Funky shops and art galleries. In the Square one can find the Museum of the Struggle for Independence. The Pillory. The Fountain of Proserpine and the restored City Weighting Scales.
My two favourite areas of the city are Ostrow Tumski and the area around my old university. This is the part of the city with the most characteristic architecture. Including a Neo-Renaissance building of the University Assembly Hall and Collegium Minus. Where I attended my lectures.
The Prussian Castle which serves as a cultural centre these days. The June 1956 Monument which honours the victims of demonstrations against the communists.
The Adam Mickiewicz Monument and further down a park named after him with a great fountain opposite the Grand Theatre building. On a sunny day it is perfect to relax here on the green grass. With a book and a take-away coffee. Trust me. I did it plenty of times. As some lectures are just to be skipped LOL
When I was living here I loved walking from the Old Town Square over quirky Garbary to Ostrow Tumski. I loved sitting on the river bank and watching the sun setting down on Poznan while sipping wine. The island is dominated by an enormous Cathedral with twin towers which holds the tombs of the first Polish Kings. It is said that the history of Poland started exactly here back in the 10th century. When Poland adopted Christianity through a Catholic baptism.
Poznan is a unique mix of history and tradition. With modernity and constant development and change. One can keep exploring and always find something interesting. Dynamic and ever-expanding. Every time I come here there is something new to be discovered. So, when in Poland, do not to miss it.