Podgorze Historical Route

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After the First Partition of Poland (1772), Krakow remained Polish and the Vistula River became the border. Austria immediately recognized the advantage of establishing a city that would be both a partner and competitor for Krakow on the right bank of the river. The small settlement of Podgorze was nominated a suitable candidate and soon (1784) was granted the status of a free city by emperor Joseph II himself.

The route begins by the Jozef Pilsudski Bridge and goes along Jozefinska Street towards Bohaterow Getta Square. The history of Podgorze is permanently connected with the Holocaust of Krakow's Jews. A few main streets were enclosed within the walls of the ghetto organised here in 1941. Worth visiting is the museum housed in the Pharmacy Under The Eagle (Apteka Pod Orlem) with its collection presenting a brief history of the Krakow ghetto liquidated by the Nazis in 1943.

From here, we go to the Market Square of Podgorze, whose architecture is dominated by neo-Gothic St Joseph's Church (1909). Other highlights of the square include the former City Hall of Podgorze build in mid-19th century and the Classicist Inn „Pod Czarnym Orlem” (Under the Sign of the Black Eagle) from early 19th century. Climbing the Lasota Hill we pass the premises of Korona Sports Club in Kalwaryjska Street. It was from here that on 31st October 1918 a force commanded by Lieutnant Antoni Stawarz set forth towards Krakow and began liberation of the city from Austrian rule.

Going further, we pass by Wojciech Bednarski Park and reach the Romanesque-Gothic St Benedict's Church dating to the 11th and 12th centuries and, next to the church, a fort built by the Austrians as an element of „Krakow Fortress”. On the other side of the hill, cut off by major traffic route, stands the 7th/8th – century Mound of the first legendary ruler of the city: Prince Krak. From here, we go to Plaszow – the former Nazi concentration camp with a monument to its victims.

Returning to the city centre, we pass on our left a physiotherapeutic complex established in 1903 by Antoni Mateczny, situated near a major traffic junction bearing the founder's name.

Useful link: www.podgorze.pl

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