Kowary – Karpacz – Bolkow

Duration: 8-9h
No of people: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Price a person (PLN): 880 470 350 270 230 220 200 200

Included in the price: hotel pickup, transportation, parking fees, driver/guide, taxes, entrance fees.

  1. Miniature Park of Silesian Historic Monuments

Visitors to this park have the opportunity to get acquainted with historic monuments such as palaces, monasteries, churches, the old towns of Lower Silesia, etc, in the form of models built to a scale of 1:25. Information is provided about each monument, including its past and historic significance. The scale models are made according to the latest techniques, and the materials are weather resistant, which allows for the models to be placed in an outdoor park setting. Greenery, natural surroundings, as well as minute attention to detail, increase the attractiveness of these already beautiful monuments of Silesian region.

  1. 2. The Wang Church

A Protestant parish church in the town of Karpacz in the Karkonosze Mountains that was transported in 1842 from the town of Vang, situated on the lake of the same name, in Norway.

The church was built of pine beams from the town of Vang in southern Norway at the turn of the 13th C. It was built as one of nearly a thousand such Norwegian „stavkirke” churches of stave construction. It is considered the oldest wooden church in Poland.

In the 19th C the church was too small for the needs of the local community, who wanting to build themselves a new church, needed to take out a loan to cover construction costs. The church was severely dilapidated, but was suitable to be sold, dismantled, and reassembled elsewhere. Then the Norwegian painter Jan Krystian Dahl who was living in Dresden convinced the Prussian emperor Frederick Wilhelm IV to buy it for a museum in Berlin.

In 1841 the disassembled church was first brought to Szczecin, and then to Berlin, but a friend of the emperor Count Frederyk von Reden from Bukowiec convinced him to transport the church to Silesia. Firstly, the church was sailed down the Oder River, and then to Karpacz Gorny (then known in German as Bruckenberg).

On the 28th of July 1844 the Wang Church became the local Protestant parish church and is still is to this day. It is a one of Karpacz’s major tourist attractions.

The church was built without the uses of nails, all beams are connected with the aid of carpentry joints. The church interior is decorated with original ornaments and sculptures. In line with 19th C preservation techniques, the structure of the church was enlarged. Also, a stone bell tower was added, which protects the wooden church from the winds from Mount Sniezka.

  1. Chojnik Castle

Built by Bolko II in the mid 14th C as a difficult to capture stone fortress. After the death of Bolko II his widow, the duchess Agnieszka handed the castle over in 1392 to the progenitor of a powerful Silesian family, Gotsche Schoff. The Castle, with a short interlude, belonged to the Schaffgotsch’s until their demise. Gotsche Schoff enriched the then existing structure in 1405 by adding a chapel dedicated to Sts. George and Catherine, which he had built above the entrance gate in the red sandstone bay window(recently partially rebuilt). During the Hussite wars the Schaffgotschs, feeling secure in their impenetrable fortress, raided merchants along the local trade route, and the local population. Once again in the 15 C the castle was substantially enlarged. On the NE side a spacious lower castle was built with an irregular plan, which was mostly filled with auxiliary structures. By the south wall was the kitchen, further to the west the living quarters of the castle troops, next to the NE wall was a cellar, and a bit further a chamber for court hearings. In the middle of the the lower castle courtyard was a stone whipping post.

The castle never had its own well, so water was collected in stone cisterns, at first in the upper castle, and then another cistern was added to the lower castle. In the first half of the 16th C the castle was expanded again. The walls surrounding the third courtyard adjoining the western wall of the lower castle were constructed then. The northern part of the new grounds was occupied by the living quarters of the castle commander, and a stable was built in the new courtyard, and in the norther corner was a tower with a starvation dungeon. A water cistern was also built in the new part of the castle. It was probably during these enlargements that all of the castle walls were crowned with a Renaissance parapet in the from of semicircles. In 1560 on the north side of the entire property a larger bastion was added. The 30 years’ war led to improvements to the fortifications on the most vulnerable side of the castle and an additional entrance gate was built. When Jan Ulryk von Schaffgotsch was executed in 1634, the castle was confiscated by the emperor, though it was then returned to the previous owners in 1649. The owners didn’t relocate their full-time residence here. On August 31, 1675 when the castle was ravaged by a fire caused by lightning, no renovation effort was made. The abandoned fortress fell into disrepair.

In 1822 tourist accommodations were opened in the castle, which are still popular with tourists today. According to legend Princess Kinga lived here, the daughter of the castle’s owner. One of her whims was that any candidate who wished to be her husband had to ride on horseback in full armor around the castle walls. For a long time no one succeeded, as each adventurer fell from the walls to his death into the chasm. One day a knight from Krakow came to the castle and succeeded in finishing the risky dare, though when the disappointed princess offered herself as bride to the knight, he refused and rode off. Unwanted and degraded, the maiden flung herself from the walls into the chasm where so many daredevils had perished because of her. Supposedly today you can see the spirit of one of the knights, who rides on horse around the castle walls on moonlight nights.