Rogoznica – Bolkow – Jaworzyna

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. GROSS ROSEN

The Gross-Rosen concentration camp was opened in 1940 as a branch of KL Sachsenhausen, whose prisoners were destined to work in the local granite quarries. The first transport of prisoners arrived on August 2, 1940.

On May 1, 1941 the Gross-Rosen obtained independent status as concentration camp. In its first two years of existence, Gross-Rosen was still a small camp aimed at working the stone quarry. Murderous 12 hour work shifts in the quarry, starvation rations, a lack of medical care, constant maltreatment and terrorizing of prisoners by the SS staff, all resulted in a high death rate among prisoners. KL Gross-Rosen was considered one of the concentration camps with the harshest conditions.

The main expansion of the Gross-Rosen camp that took place in 1944 also changed the nature of the camp: besides the central Gross-Rosen camp many sub-camps arose (about 100) located mostly in Lower Silesia, the Sudety area, and the Lubuski lands.

Amongst the larger camps were: AL Funfleichen in Jelcza, 4 camps in Wroclaw (Breslau), Dyhernfurth in Brzeg Dolny, Landeshut in Kamienna Gora as well as a complex of camps located in the Owl Mountains.

Altogether, approx. 125,000 prisoners passed through the main camp and its sub-camps, including prisoners who weren’t registered, but brought to the camp solely to be executed, e.g. 2,500 Soviet prisoners of war. Among the largest groups of nationalities sent to the Gross-Rosen complex were: Jews (of various European nationalities), Poles, and citizens of the Soviet Union.

The estimated number of people who perished at Gross-Rosen is 40,000.

One of the most tragic periods in the camp’s history was its evacuation. During the transports (lasting even several weeks) many thousands of prisoners died.

From the autumn of 1943 until February 1945 the Wroclaw gestapo ran a re-education work camp that 4,200 prisoners passed through.

  1. Bolków

The Castle in Bolkow is one of the most well known monuments of Silesian Medieval architecture.

The ducal castle was built on the initiative of Boleslaw II the Bald, while construction work and finishing touches were completed by his son Bolko I. The layout consisted of two buildings: one residential, the other an auxiliary outbuilding plus an unusually tear drop shaped tower. Bolkow served to defend and guard the trade routes along the Czech border.

The first major expansion of the castle took place in 1540 under the direction of Jakub Parr, a known Silesian architect. The fortifications were enlarged and the fortress took on a Renaissance appearance. The next refurbishment was at the beginning of the 18th C when the Castle was purchased by the Cistercians from Krzeszow. When the Castle became the property of the Prussian state in the 19th C, they began to slowly dismantle it.

The Bolkow Castle is a tourist attraction well worth visiting, and during the summer season a number of knightly tournaments await visitors.

The castle ruins are open to visitors, from where there is a beautiful view of the town and surrounding area. The view is especially enchanting in the autumn.

  1. Jaworzyna Śląska

Currently the Museum presents exhibits including historic rolling stock from 1890 until the 1970s. The collection consists of more than 50 locomotives (of Polish, German, Austrian, British, and American construction), around 50 passenger wagons, as well as a rail crane and snow plow. The entire collection is displayed in a roundhouse with 19 stands and 1.5 km of tracks.

Besides rolling stock, the museum also has a unique collection of Harley-Davidson and Indian motorcycles. Models from the years 1924-1978 have been lovingly restored and are in working condition.

The museum organizes in the historic spaces of the former locomotive shed a selection of themed exhibits dedicated to the history of technology and industry. Open for visitors are displays of industrial, agricultural, and carpentry machines and equipment, plus an ODRA computer from 1974, polygraph machines, craftsmen equipment, and home appliances from Silesia.

Tourists can also visit an exhibit dedicated to the history of communication, which consists of historic radio receivers, teleprinters, telephones, and telephone operator switchboards. An fun option for kids and teen agers is the Museum of Toy Cars.

An exhibit about „the role of the rails in deportations after WWII” is located in two historic trains and tells the story of migration and the fate of people from Silesia after WWII.

The museum also boasts an H0 scale train track model with authentic safety devices that control the rail traffic. For tourists there is also a handcar that can be ridden for recreational purposes on the museum tracks.