The first thing to note for those who barely have an idea about Poland asides pointing at it on a map is that Katowice is the part of the Upper Silesia region. It is also referred to as the center of tremendous engineering. Katowice is very rich in coal and this is why mining has made the city so popular.
Although most people see it as nothing but a city of coals, Katowice’s mining has enabled it to reach the international economic stage. Asides from the industrial factories as well as plants, a huge number of cultural and historical sites have been discovered on the city’s territory.
Furthermore, Poland is the dream destination of travelers, among Warsaw and Krakow you should consider Katowice on your list as this is another great place to visit. This is because it is filled with culture, history and very exciting attractions. We will be focusing on your next visit to Katowice and all the exciting places or things you can either visit or do.
Some amazing sites you can visit while in Katowice include:
With its nickname known as “Latajacy Spodek” meaning flying saucer, you must be aware that this magnificent building was initially planned on being built in the popular Silesia Park.
However, its avant-garde look made it be built in the center of the city. Interestingly, it holds about eleven thousand people and part of this building has been utilized back in the year 1969, though its grand opening was done on the 9th of May 1971.
● Cathedral of Christ the King
Believe it or not, this has been rated as the most beautiful building in Katowice alongside the Catholic Church of Holy Maria.
Meanwhile, the structure of all these religious facilities gives the tiniest of thoughts to even the slightest details. Also, the church is decorated with both frescos and sculptures, and another hand, the entire inner decoration has been made by hand.
In taking, you down the path of history a little bit, the construction of such a colossal arch-cathedral which is the biggest in Poland started in the year 1927 although it became interrupted by the emergence of the second world war.
photo credit: PetrusSilesius
● Kościuszko Park
Do not believe the comments of people online that say Poland is just a land of coal. This is because Katowice has Kosciuszko Park, which is actually the handiest green space if ever you should find yourself in the center of Katowice.
The park swells from about six hectares right from when it was first inaugurated in the year 1888. The park is completely wreathed by an English landscape park that is made up of diverse tree species as the formal flowerbed.
However, there are wartime stories that are attached to this park. Also, there is the parachute training tower in the southern area of the park that is forty meters high and it actually dates back to the time before the second world war took place.
Interestingly, it was right at the top of this amazing metal structure that some boy scouts staged an attempt to defend the city on September 4th, 1939 against the Wehrmacht. If your visit will be during wintertime, there is a ski slope and toboggan run to try.
photo credit: Paul167
● The St Mary’s Street (Ulica Mariacka)
Searching for nightlife artery, then the pedestrianized Ulica Mariacka is the right spot to be at. Tourists are sure to visit the sturdy tower of St Mary’s church.
Furthermore, this street was simply pedestrianized in the year 2008 and by the year 2011, cherry tree saplings of about thirty were planted and now, they add to the spring color.
Also, just some hundred meters away are about twenty taverns and some restaurants, nightclubs as well as bistros.
Before embarking on your journey to Katowice, you should check on your calendar before making the move. This is solely because there is usually something that goes on to align the street. It could either be a wine and cheese fair or a concert.
● St Mary’s Church
As a result of the mass immigration to the Upper Silesia and with the city burgeoning in the mid 19th century, all of the new residents needed a place that they could worship. The best answer for them was at Mary’s church which was built in the 1860s.
Although it is quite a comparatively new construction, St Mary’s church has lots of value because most of the respected artists of that period worked on the décor and fittings.
Furthermore, Adam Bunsch painted the mesmerizing glass windows that are stained. However, for something quite older, there is actually a late gothic altar in the “Sacra Conversazione” chapel built in the transept.
● Silesia Concert Hall
For the music lovers, a sure place to visit is the Silesia Concert Hall which frequently conducts interesting concerts of popular European artists.
On Tuesdays, solo concerts are carried out here and by Fridays, tourists will enjoy the concerts of the Philharmonic Orchestra.
Not to forget that, while you are taking a walk around the city from the Silesia concert Hall, tourists can take a quick trip to the Planetarium.
● Silesian Philharmonic
Lovers of music will surely enjoy their tour all the more if they make a stop at Silesia Philharmonic. It is actually a music institution located in Katowice. Also, it was established back in 1945 and the first concert of its orchestra was carried out on the 26th of May 1945.
By 1973, Silesia Philharmonic saw a change in its choir which had now become mixed. Bear in mind that this building has a highly established position when it comes down to the cultural heritage of the upper Silesian metropolitan union.
Nikiszowiec and Giszowiec
Remainings of industrial history are two districts of Katowice. It is a region popular not only among lovers of architecture and urban planning. Workers’ estates unique on a European scale were established over a hundred years ago. Nikiszowiec designed by Georg and Emil Zillman to be a completely self-sufficient community for 1,000 workers with a school, hospital, police station, post office, swimming pool, bakery, and Church.
The residential complex of Nikiszowiec is composed of six compact four-sided three-storey blocks with inner courtyards. Giszowiec was designer also by Emil and Georg Zillmann, who implemented the idea of a city-garden. Modeled on rural English cottages, the original dwellings of Giszowiec are low, freestanding, sloped roof houses surrounded by garden plots.
When you think about Poland this place is not really famous, but really interesting to see and enjoy. A must if you visit Katowice.
The Silesian Museum in Katowice was established on January 23, 1929. Museum operated until World War II. Reactivated in 1984, it occupied a beautiful, historic building on Aleja Korfanty in Katowice. In 2015, the facility was moved to the areas taken over from the Katowice Coal Mine. The old buildings taken over from the mine were adapted for exhibition purposes.
From the Warsaw II shaft observation tower you can admire the panorama of the Katowice from a height of 40 meters. Modern rectangular-shaped buildings testify to the enormous progress that can be seen in Katowice. There is probably no better place to document the historical and cultural heritage of Silesia.
Most of the exhibitions were placed 14 meters underground, and at the top, there were glazed boxes that light up the exhibitions. The mine’s historical landscape has not changed much, and the historic buildings have been beautifully restored. This magnificent museum is constantly expanding and is a must-see when staying near the Upper Silesian capital.
Katowice has preserved so many intriguing architectural buildings among which the Goldstein palace is a part of. It was built in the 19th century, though the second half of it. And, it was built for the Goldstein brothers who were owners of diverse sawmills and were actually rated among the richest inhabitants of the city at the time.
photo credit: Lestat (Jan Mehlich)
Nonetheless, you can ignore all you may have heard about Katowice and visit this intriguing city. You are surely going to love it as there are so many sites to actually visit.