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The Warsaw Voice » Regional Voice » June 3, 2014
The Lubelskie Voice
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Take a Trip to Lublin Province - Discover Lubelskie
June 3, 2014   
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Our marketing efforts and investment in facilities and products for tourists are bringing the expected results. We are no longer an anonymous, obscure region of Poland. Instead, we draw growing numbers of visitors from Poland’s major metropolitan areas.

Lublin province is also increasingly popular among tourists from abroad, especially our neighbors from Ukraine and Belarus, as well as from Germany, Britain, Scandinavia and Israel. Now that we have flights to London, Oslo, Frankfurt and Rome, we are expecting many more foreign visitors.

Krzysztof Hetman
Chairman of Lublin Province

When the hustle and bustle of the big city feels overwhelming and you need time out to enjoy life at a slower pace, a trip to Lublin province in eastern Poland may be just the thing you need.

Lublin province offers lots of opportunities to relax and recharge your batteries. The region is ideal for active forms of recreation, especially if you like a challenge and enjoy exploring new places throughout the year. With a highly diversified landscape and a wealth of natural and cultural heritage sites, Lublin province is sure to keep you busy. It offers a steadily growing range of activities and facilities for tourists, including theme parks, rope obstacle courses, horse riding trails and lessons, bicycle routes, skiing trails and marinas with sailboats and canoes.

If you want to ride a horse, go hiking, to take a bicycle trip or go canoeing, the best locations are the Małopolska Vistula Water Gap, the Podlasie Bug Water Gap, Powi¶le, Roztocze, the Solska Forest and the Janowskie Woods. Lublin province has a large number of clearly laid-out and marked tourist trails and routes. These are something of a local specialty. The province also has a number of winter resorts, most of them in the Roztocze and Powi¶le regions, with ski slopes and cross-country skiing trails.

One of the most well known tourist destinations in Lublin province is the town of Kazimierz Dolny, particularly popular among visitors from the Warsaw area. This former port on the Vistula River is home to a royal castle, picturesque townhouses and granaries overlooking the river. Kazimierz Dolny has been drawing tourists for over a century now and its historic buildings and beautiful surroundings also make it a favorite with painters, photographers and filmmakers. On the other side of the river from Kazimierz Dolny is another town well worth exploring—Janowiec. This boasts a mighty castle that belonged to the Firlej and Lubomirski families. You can get there from Kazimierz Dolny by taking a ferry. In high season, tourists are also offered cruises up and down the Vistula River in pleasure boats. Both Janowiec and Kazimierz Dolny host famous artistic and cultural events, such as the Dwa Brzegi (Two Banks) Film and Art Festival.

Kazimierz Dolny and Janowiec are close to two other highly popular resorts, Puławy and Nałęczów. The city of Puławy is best known for its Czartoryski Palace, surrounded by a 30-hectare scenic park and several other palaces and historic garden buildings in the Classical, Oriental and Gothic Revival styles. Newer places of tourist interest in Puławy include a marina on the Vistula River, a promenade and an observation tower.

Nałęczów is Lublin province’s prime health resort, enticing visitors with lush natural surroundings. Sitting between green loess ravines, it rose to prominence as a health resort almost two centuries ago thanks to the local mineral waters. Today, it stands out with state-of-the-art hydrotherapy facilities and swimming pools, some of them housed in the historic Małachowski Palace in the Zdrojowy (Spa) Park, the Ksi±żę Józef (Duke Joseph) Sanatorium, the Stare Łazienki (Old Baths) and a number of other sanatoriums. Nałęczów also has dozens of historic villas modeled on spa resorts in the Alps and in Poland’s Tatra Mountains. Celebrities who have stayed in Nałęczów over the years include 19th- and 20th-century Polish writers Bolesław Prus and Stefan Żeromski, whose museums are among the town’s attractions.

Another famous health resort in Lublin province is Krasnobród, regarded as the tourist gem of the picturesque Roztocze region. Stretching all the way to Lviv, Ukraine, Roztocze is famous for impressive fir and beech forests, forest-covered hills and ravines with rushing creeks and rapids. Roztocze offers an extended network of hiking, biking, horse riding and canoeing routes in addition to superb conditions for Nordic walking and skiing. Visitors can find accommodation in a wide choice of hotels, hostels and boarding houses, and the local attractions also include bathing sites in reservoirs that border beautiful forests.

Poland’s eastern borderlands in Lublin province, especially those along the Bug River, have recently become a trendy destination among tourists who like challenging and unexplored locations. The Bug valley was “rediscovered” several years ago by canoeing enthusiasts from West Flanders, who helped put up signs on the region’s first official canoeing route. Canoeing expeditions down the Bug River, between the towns of Włodawa and Janów Podlaski, have since become a major attraction and are offered in a package along with a tour of local sanctuaries, including the St. Onuphrius’ Orthodox Christian monastery in Jabłeczna, the Blessed Virgin Mary’s Basilica in Kodeń, and an Eastern Catholic church in Kostomłoty.

Over the centuries, what is now Lublin province has been a melting pot of religions and cultures of the East and West. The interplay of the different religions can be seen in the Holy Trinity Chapel at Lublin Castle, an example of the Gothic style in architecture. Inside, the chapel is covered in Russian revival frescos. A rare combination in the rest of Poland, Catholic churches in Lublin province stand side by side with synagogues, Orthodox Christian churches and Eastern Catholic churches in many cities, towns and villages, testifying to the region’s multicultural past. This heritage has inspired a number of big and small local events and festivals, including the Jagiellonian Fair, the Carnival of Conjurers and the European Flavors Festival in Lublin, the Three Cultures Festival in Włodawa, the Klezmer Music and Culture Festival in Kazimierz Dolny, and the European Neighborhood Days festival held on the Polish and Ukrainian sides of the Bug River.

Palace and Park in Kozłówka
The rich history of Lublin province is reflected in numerous palaces and manor houses, one of the finest examples being the palace and park complex in Kozłówka.

Built in the first half of the 18th century, the palace and the surrounding park were remodeled by Count Konstanty Zamoyski at the end of the 19th century. Shortly after World War II, the estate was turned into a museum. The present-day Zamoyski Museum in Kozłówka is one of Poland’s most popular museums located in a former aristocratic residence.

The Kozłówka palace boasts meticulously conserved Second French Empire-style interiors that were in part modeled on those at Versailles near Paris. It has decorative molding and parquet floors in each room, along with marble fireplaces and stoves with tiles made at famous factories in Meissen, Germany. The rooms are lavishly furnished with vintage paintings, clocks, bronze figures, lamps and many other items made at Europe’s finest studios and workshops.

Kozłówka’s former coach house has been converted into Europe’s first Socialist Realist Art Gallery with a collection of paintings, sculptures, drawings, posters and other items from the 1950s, an era when art was used as a communist propaganda tool. Carriages, horse riding equipment and travel accessories are on show in Kozłówka’s coach-horse stable.

The Kozłówka park offers many scenic views and opportunities to take photos in its elegant French formal garden with a fountain and a memorial to Napoleonic soldiers, and in an English landscape garden with an aviary inhabited by colorful peacocks and pheasants. The park neighbors a vast forest complex called Lasy Kozłowieckie (Forests of Kozłówka).

For further information on tourism in Lublin province, go to www.lubelskie.pl (“Turystyka” tab) and www.lubelskietravel.pl
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