At leisure – a bit of Chełmno (Culm) and Torun at dusk

Day off…

I learned to cherish each day off like the best delicacy. Especially, as my season seems to be a very long one – with the end in January. Well… we had a day off at the same time, and almost in the same company.  So we started off in the morning. It means – well after 9:00 a.m. we finally decided to move.

Our aim was Torun (Thorn), with a short stop in Chełmno (Culm) on our way. Unfortunately the days are getting shorter (thanks to the stupid time change, giving nothing but earlier darkness), and additionally – because we did not take the highway – in Chełmno we had time only to visit the High Church of the town (popularly called the… St. Mary’s). The reason for it was the lack of time on the way to Torun. As Torun was our day’s target.

But, it doesn’t mean we did not have time to drop in for a tasty chocolate cake and a delicious apple pie in Vanilla Cafe (just upstairs of the flower shop in the center of the town). It seems we did not lack the time for this.

However, Chełmno is a town for a whole day’s visit. For one can’t just walk past the details on the buildings, which although still awaiting better times – retained their charm. How not to sink in the soothing silence of the town’s churches, or how not to walk down the streets – yearning for the good old long gone times of the gossip on the thresholds… So we shall return to Chełmno in spring, when there will be neither itching chill of the wind, nor the drizzle, successfully discouraging to hunt for a good camera shot.

So – promising ourselves a longer spring visit, we finally took off for Torun.

And when we got there… Well, as always – we walked without a rush, and in fact without any purpose. As it is so difficult to decide what to touch first, what to see first. Should it be the Leaning Tower, or the Saint Johns’ Cathedral, or maybe St. James soaked in the purple light of the setting sun, or maybe should it be rather the Town Hall… Finally – as always, we ended up in St. Mary’s

And then we took a stroll through the streets in the deepening dusk.

However Torun is not only one of Poland’s 14 UNESCO sites, it is not only the place to explore the untouched medieval architecture, or to feel the atmosphere – retained throught the centuries. It is not only the town where the famous Nicolaus Copernicus was born…

Torun is also a place to eat delicious dumplings (pierogi). So to maintain the tradition – we went to the Leniwa restaurant. The dumplings were more than worth a visit.

Honestly I can state, that our Torun visit was without any plan, nor aim. We went there just because we love the city, and have known it for a long time. My long historical family bonds keep me tied to the city very firmly…

So we did not have to see anything in particular, neither we needed to admire anything special, to know we visited a unique place on earth 😉

I managed to take some photos of pretty good sights both in Chełmno and in Torun. And of course, because I forgot the tripod – some of the photos are out of focus… And for this I am sorry. 😉

St. Mary’s in Torun

Whenever I visit Torun, I mainly concentrate on St. Mary’s church…

It is hypnotic.

I do not treat it as a church from today’s perspective. I am amazed by its strong medieval message. We truly are dominated by the grandeur of the interior, and forced to look up. Today by looking UP – we mean looking at the splendid vaulted ceilings. But for a medieval man, it was looking farther, beyond. The ceiling of the church was Heaven itself, the site of God. In the middle ages with the very strong religiousness, it was an extremely important ideological message…

The construction of Torun’s St. Mary’s church started in … 1343. The same year as St. Mary’s Church in Gdansk, and was completed at the end of the century.

HERE is a short video of the church and here ANOTHER one… And ANOTHER

To feel the atmosphere and to inhale the ages of history – you must come to Torun 🙂

Why Torun ?

Facebook sometimes provokes to deeper thoughts 😀 – yes, it sometimes does…

So – when I saw a post asking everyone from Torun to say why they like their town – I thought I should write too.

No, I am not from this marvelous town, where one can touch gothic (BRICKS)…

HERE is a link to some of the photos I have been taking for years there – with the same delight…

My family ties with the town are too far in the history to be mentioned here. But I am deeply attached to this social and architectural phenomenon. When several years ago I decided to approach the state exams to become a guide there – it was because of my fascination with the town. With it’s history ? yes, to some extend. But most of all – I am enchanted with it’s charm and beauty. Despite the fact that they still have a lot of restoration works to be done 😉

So… If you ask me why I like Torun, I’d say:

  • For the atmosphere of the Old and New Town,
  • For the dumplings (pierogi),
  • For the un-changeability of St. James and the Johns’ churches,
  • For the dim silence in St. Mary’s,
  • For the echo of the town hall’s courtyard,
  • For the treasure of Skrwilno,
  • For the extra slippery staircase in the Museum
  • For the great wardrobe in the house of Copernicus,
  • For the smell of gingerbread,
  • For Brand (gmerk) Avenue,
  • For the brick (more than one) –
  • For everything…
Published in: on 29/10/2012 at 13:04  Comments (1)  

Toruń – misty

The route to Torun was worse than a nightmare.

The fog was like milk and the evening came so suddenly… So unexpected, like every autumn evening. I drove literally “the squirrel” style – that is, I was almost nose to the windshield.

But when we finally reached Torun – it greeted us immersed in the fog – and as always breathtaking. Truism, but I just can think of no other word…

I installed the group in the hotel, and I went to park my car under the bridge – traditionally, because nowhere else is so near 😉

Then he went to my hotel, because this time I slept in other than my group did. After some time – I realized that – I forgot the charger to the cell in the car. So I marched through the “milk”, illuminated by the “echo” of the limelight … and THIS IS what I caught in the lens of my cell phone camera 🙂


Published in: on 23/10/2012 at 22:19  Leave a Comment  

Torun’s UNESCO anniversary

It is a unique place on the map of Poland.


Here – one can touch the gothic

Here – Nicolaus Copernicus was born…

Here – one can eat probably the most smooth and tasty pierogi in Poland…

Here – one can taste the famous gingerbread

And now – the town is celebrating its 15th anniversary of being inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List

Congratulations My Favorite Town 🙂

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Torun – come and touch the gothic

Torun is a jewel. Such can be the most succinct description of this unique town.

Torun is one of very few towns in Poland – not destroyed during the Second World War. And as such – it guarantees the same spirit as in the former times.

Torun is a town of exquisite details…

It also is known as the place where the famous astronomer – Nicolaus Copernicus was born. But not everyone knows about Frederic Chopin in Torun 😉

The history of Torun (Thorn) can be shortened to few sentences:

*   established by the Teutons,

*   flourished within the Polish Kingdom during the so called Golden Age,

*   taken from Poland during Partitions,

*   returned to Poland after WWI.

But Torun is about more than splendid history – now it is a city of a well-known University, and it is one of the Polish UNESCO sites. It has many small but cosy hotels, and very good quality cuisine.

Generally Torun is called the quintessence of gothic.

And – one more thing: Torun is famous for its … gingerbread.

Toruń is an absolute MUST when in Poland.

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