Silesia explorer

Blog about tourist places, travelling in Upper Silesia, Poland

Olsztyn – place to break from the city, but not far away


This small paradise is here.

Olsztyn is a small village near Częstochowa.

When you google Olsztyn, please, not get confused – Poland has another Olsztyn – the capital of Warmia-Mazury voivodeship – north-east region in Poland.

The biggest attraction of this place is the ruins of castle situated at picturesque cliffs. Polish people know this place because it is a part of Jura – Kraków -Częstochowa  Upland – beautiful hills, stretching from Kraców to Częstochowa with bicycle and foot roads, protected by the status of Landscape Park.

Here is a good combination of natural tourism and historical tourism. I found picture of this the castle in Olsztyn on brochure about Częstochowa region and fell in love with this place from first sight. In the lunch time my dream was born. In the evening I met guy from international hospitality web-site “www.couchsurfing.org” . He asked me how I want to spend time, and my answer was clear – Olsztyn. New mate drove me (around 20 minutes) to Olsztyn, so I avoided contact (expected difficulties in evening time) with public transport. Dreams come true.

So what is Olsztyn? Nothing special: three ruined towers, several ruined pieces of wall. These ruins are on the mount. From height you can observe 360° landscapes of neighbor villages, forest and cliffs. Ruins are mixed with huge natural rocks. As for me, it’s a beauty. Olsztyn castle is not a museum, here is no entrance tickets, no fence barriering the territory of historical sign. You can visit it 24 hours per day.

The castle in Olsztyn is a part of the Trail of the Eagle’s Nests – complex of more or less conserved castles (4 the most popular) of 14-18 centuries, all situated on hills with cliffs, looked in one style. Our article about another object of the Trail of the Eagle’s Nests – Bedzin you can read here.

The best way to come to Olsztyn is to go by car or bus from Czestochowa – just 15 kilometrs.

If you understand Polish language some information you can find on town’s web-site.

Castle itself also has web-site, which is not updated, but still you can read the history, legends.

Sometimes city organizes in castle festivals in Middle Age style. On 12 August 2012 here will be Knight Tournament with demonstration of medieval fights: guns, armor, horses, traditional food, men and ladies in beautiful old dresses.

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Będzin castle


Bendzin (pol. Będzin) is small town in Katowice agglomeration.

Będzin Castle is the part of the Trail of Eagle’s Nest – trail of 25 Middle Ages castles, situated between Kraków and Częstochowa. Our article about another object of this trail Olsztyn you can find here.

Castle in Będzin didn’t amaze me much. My German mate told me that she has two castles like this in her home town.

The castle is small, cute and well-ordered. As all castles, this lays on the mount, so you have good view to the castle from different parts of the town. Castle is situated inside the town, so I didn’t feel myself separated from city’s noise and didn’t plunge into history fully.

For me the most beautiful thing was sitting on bench in small internal courtyard, surrounded from all sides by walls. You feel yourself as little person inside of circle of walls.

Castle building consists museum. Inside museum you go up old wooden square stairs. On each floor you have small room with exhibition mostly of old armors and weapons. Also the exhibition is presented on stairs corridor.

   

  

Another part of castle is a tower with stairs, going round long, long way in limited narrow space. Going up or down your head will also go round. From the roof of tower you can observe view of neighborhood: pretty fields, villages, church,  roads, and some strange object, which my French friend called nuclear plant (truly it is coal-fired thermal power station).

  

Funny situation happened with me when I went to toilet in restaurant, which is situated underground in courtyard. The restaurant has knight’s style: rock walls, dark room, arms on walls, lighting in old-torch style, one small window, Middle age style music. I went upstairs to go out the restaurant, and I realized that large Middle age’s door is closed that I’m alone here, underground, surrounding dark illumination, with scared weapons on walls, with music – nobody will hear me, with small window, with squeezing rock walls.

Finally after not long time I was freed by very sorry waiter with cup of coffee for free. Equivalent moral suffering, hm…

It is fully impossible not to find this castle if you are already in Bendzin. Town is small, caste is visible from all sides.

I don’t know how the web-site of castle can help to ordinary tourist, but it is.

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