| Invitation | Wroclaw | Venue | Reports | Speakers | Photos | Resolutions | Links |

Wroclaw

Wroclaw, the capital of Lower Silesia, is one of the oldest and most beautiful Polish cities. The city located in direct proximity to the Czech Republic's and Germany's border, at the foot of the Sudety Mountains, by the Odra River, crossed by many canals and tributaries of Odra river, delights with its beauty and unique character.

Wroclaw is a city in which the influences of various cultures and nations had been crossing for centuries. The history of Wroclaw dates back to the 10th century when it was founded by the legendary Czech prince Vratislav. Repeated changes of country membership of Wroclaw, as well as different cultural impacts, left their stamp in the sphere of material and spiritual culture. The city's name itself had been changed many times (Wrotizla, Wretslaw, Presslaw, Bresslau, Breslau etc.).

The northeast view from the Town Hall's tower (1945)
The last months of the Second World War were dramatic for Wroclaw - during fierce battles the city was destroyed in 70 per cent. Despite of enormous destruction the city regained its glamour as a result of numerous efforts, and today it is considered to be one of the most beautiful European cities.
The contemporary Wroclaw, inhabited by more than 600 000 people, is also an important political, economic, cultural and scientific centre. Convenient location and thick network of roads and water routes allowed for a quick economic development of the city and the region. Wroclaw is also an important university centre, with twenty universities and colleges, including the Wroclaw University and the Wroclaw University of Technology.

The contemporary Wroclaw is also a dynamic cultural centre. It is a place of avant-garde theatre undertakings, such as the Pantomime Theatre of Henryk Tomaszewski and Laboratorium Theatre of Jerzy Grotowski, and numerous international festivals.

The international festival "Vratislavia Cantans" is the biggest one among them. "Jazz by the Odra River" Festival, Days of the Music of Old Masters, Wroclaw Meetings of One-Actor Theatres and Small Theatrical Forms, or International Theatre Festival "Dialog" Wroclaw are also worth noting. The opera shows organised in the Wroclaw Hala Ludowa (People's Hall) delight with their monumental character.
Town Hall (photo S. Klimek)
Ostrow Tumski (photo S. Klimek)
The buildings of Wroclaw represent the over one thousand year old history of the city. The old town, with its restored tenement houses, as well as other numerous monuments in Wroclaw will give everybody unforgettable experience.

Situated on both sides of the Odra river Wroclaw is the city of bridges and islands. The most famous of them is Ostrów Tumski (Cathedral Island) - a historic and spiritual centre of the city. Here Wroclaw began its 1000 years old life and here the first city and cathedral were built. One of the most beautiful complexes of Gothic sacral architecture in Europe survived in perfect condition on this island.
The Wroclaw Market Square is one of the biggest ones in Europe. The Wroclaw Town Hall - one of the most magnificent pearls of the secular Gothic architecture of the Central and Eastern Europe - is located in the centre of the Market Square.


Hala Ludowa (People's Hall), extremely modern in its expression and construction, built in the years 1911-1913 and designed by German architect Max Berg, is an example of the 20th century architecture.

Town Hall - the seat of the History Museum
of the City of Wroclaw (photo S. Klimek)
Hala Ludowa - megascene (photo S. Klimek)
The rise of this most famous work of the Wroclaw modernism was related to the 100th anniversary of issuing in Wroclaw the manifesto "To my people" by Frederick Wilhelm III calling for common resistance against Napoleon. The anniversary was celebrated by the exhibition presenting the history and economic achievement of Silesia, and at the same time providing a place for organising large exhibitions and trade, cultural and sport events. As the hall has the system of moving telescope auditoriums and podiums, and sports ground, it is possible to organise there both stage events, trade fairs and exhibitions, as well as sport competitions in various disciplines. The hall can accommodate up to 7000 people.

Wroclaw is famous for its sixteen museums. One of them is the Museum of Architecture, the only one in Poland, situated in the former Gothic monastery and known for the most precious national collection of stained glass (since 12th to 20th century). The Museum of the Raclawice Panorama is especially worth visiting. One can see there the biggest painting in Poland (120m x 15m), created by Jan Styka and Wojciech Kossak in 1894, which depicts the battle waged between the Polish and the Russian Army in 1794 in Raclawice. Significant collections of the medieval Silesian art presented in the Museum of Archdiocese and the National Museum are also worth seeing. The Wroclaw Arsenal, in turn, is proud of its interesting military collections. Whereas the Cemetery Art Museum which comprises the 19th century Jewish cemetery with impressive mausoleums and headstones surrounded by luxuriant greenery of the historic trees is characterised by romantic, specific nature.
National Museum (photo S. Klimek)

Japanese Garden (photo S.Klimek)
Wroclaw is one of the greenest Polish cities. The 18th century Szczytnicki Park, where the original Japanese Garden is situated, is a favourite place for walks and trips. This garden was a pearl of the World Exhibition of 1913 and constitutes one of its few remains. In 1996 the Wroclaw authorities with a help of the Japanese Embassy started works on revaluation of this object. Due to the presence of the Japanese specialists (gardeners, garden architects) the Japanese Garden, referring to the historic plans of 1913, was enriched with many new elements which gave him a character consistent with the principles of the Japanese garden art.


Detailed information: www.wroclaw.pl
Privacy Policy COPYRIGHT BY BIURO GENERALNEGO INSPEKTORA OCHRONY DANYCH OSOBOWYCH, 2004