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POLAND : POZNAN - Sightseeing

The tourist heart of Poznan is the Old Market Square. The eye-catcher is the beautiful town hall in Renaissance style. Its historic rooms house the City Museum of Poznan. Around the square the visitor finds the nice cosy little terraces of the cafes and the beer houses, as well as numerous tourist shops with souvenirs and art objects. Painters sell their work in the narrow streets around the medieval houses. It’s worthwhile to stop and visit the Museum of Musical Instruments and to admire its rich Polish and foreign collection. In June the annual Sint John’s Fair takes place here.

In the narrow streets other historic buildings add to the charm of Poznan. A masterpiece of Baroque architecture can be found in the parish church of St. Stanislaw. The monastery of the Jesuits, next to the church, houses the seat of the town council. In 1806 Napoleon Bonaparte stayed for almost three weeks there and in 1828 Chopin gave his concerts here.

The present-day centre of Poznan lies on the west side of the Old Town. Here, the visitor will find most of the modern shops, department stores, banks and restaurants.

On Wolnosci Square the attention is immediately drawn by the classicist style of the Raczynski Library. Next to it, the National Museum with its valuable collection of Polish and foreing paintings. On the west side of the square is the Arkadia Casino, which in former days was a theatre where Nicollo Paganini ( in 1829) and Franz List (in 1843) performed.

The statue of the great Polish poet Adam Mickiewicz adornes the square named after him. Next to the statue is the monument for the victims who fell during the June 1956 workers uprising. The Mickiewicz square ends in the University Hall, the most important concert hall of the city. Poznan is an important musical centre in Poland. It has one of the best operas of the country and is home to some world famous ballet ensembles and chamber orchestras.

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