Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Beauty of Gdansk, Poland

How curious. After I told colleagues that I was planning to make a short visit to Gdansk, Poland, and, overwhelmingly, the opinions ranged from: "Skip Gdansk, it's such an ugly city," to "There's not much there, aside from shipyards and a monument and museum for the Solidarity movement."

I'm glad I didn't pay any attention to these uninformed views. Here are my recommendation based on  what I found:

• Walk the main street to take in the facades and gables bedecked with symbols. One bears the resemblance of Shakespeare because many of his plays were performed in this city during the 17th century.

Justice sits atop a nearby building sits Justice while another is topped with Neptune.

• The Town Hall with its imposing clock tower bears a sundial on its facade. A stop to visit the Red room is a must.

• For panoramic views of the city, climb the 255-foot-high tower of St. Mary's Church.  This is where Bach had once applied to be a cantor. The enormous, 15th century astronomical clock and calendar on the wall is quite complex, revealing phases of the moon, zodiac symbols, and a bell that Adam & Eve ring on the hour.

• Wander narrow Mariacka Street that's lined with mansions displaying gargoyles house amber workshops, artist atelier, cafes and even a lovely library.

• Stroll the riverfront promenade where the new section of the maritime Museum exhibits ship models from around the world and allows the kids to make a tsunami.


Rob said...

I have to admit I wouldn't have considered going to Gdansk but having seen your pictures I think it looks lovely.

J The Travel Authority said...

Hi Rob, I know. I was completely surprised by the architectural gems I found in Gdansk.

Mike Holland said...

The old part of Gdansk is quite worth a visit. I only had a few hours there unfortunately but my objective after seeing the usual attractions, is always is to find a typical bar/pub and try the local brew and I wasn't disappointed. There is plenty to choose from in the Glowne Miasto and the traders are tourist friendly.