January 2013
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Poland – St. Roch’s Church in Bialystok in Central Europe

Poland is a country located in Central Europe. It has a long Baltic Sea coastline. It is bordered by:
• Belarus
• Czech Republic
• Germany
• Lithuania
• Russia
• Slovakia
• Ukraine

Bialystok is the largest city in north-eastern Poland.

Overview of Bialystok

• It is the capital of Podlaskie Voivodship.
• It is the gateway to many natural attractions of the Podlasie region.
• It is also known as the Green Lungs of Poland.
• It has the well known Biebrza and Bialowieza national parks.
• Bialystok is also the place of birth of Ludwik Zamenhoff.
• He was the inventor of the artificial language Esperanto.
• The city hosted an international Esperanto conference in 2010.

About the Church

• St. Roch Roman Catholic Church in Bialystok in Poland was built between 1927-1946
• It was constructed in a modernistic style.
• It was designed by renowned Polish architect, Professor Oskar Sosnowski.
• Its official name is Church – Monument of Poland’s Regained Independence.
• It stands on the Saint Roch hill on Lipowa Street in Bialystok.
• It is in the spot where a Roman Catholic cemetery was present.
• This cementer y was founded in 1839.
• The cemetery was profaned by the Russians during the January Uprising.
• The church was built on initiative of local provost whose name wasd Adam Abramowicz.
• He, in April 1926, announced competition for the design of a new complex.
• The design of professor Sosnowski won out of 70 other contestants.
• The church is planned as an octahedron.
• It has three masses set on one another.
• The first mass makes the main part of the complex.
• The other two are located on the sides, making the attics.
• Initially, the church was commemorated to Mary.
• It symbolized a star.
• Sosnowski used stars in his design which are visible in elements of the vault.
• After his death the construction was continued by another architect, Stanislaw Bukowski.
• During the Soviet occupation of eastern Poland during World War II Soviet authorities planned to open a circus in the unfinished building.
• The church has 83-meter tower.
• This is modeled after that of the Cathedral in Kamianets-Podilskyi.
• On the top, there is a 3-meter figure of Mary.
• This stands on a Piast-style crown.
• The vaults resemble traditional vaults that are still found in houses of northeastern part of Poland.
• Near the church, there is a rectory.
• It was also designed by Sosnowski.
• The whole complex is surrounded by walls.
• This is in reference to the tradition of fortified churches, common in eastern Poland.

Sports in Poland

• Mountain hikes
• Water sports
• Skiing
• Horse riding
• Cycling
• First bungee jump
• Paintball encounter
• Rock climbing

Best time to visit / climate

• The climate is mostly temperate throughout the country.
• The climate is oceanic in the north and west.
• It becomes gradually warmer and continental towards the south and east.
• Summers are generally warm.
• It is with average temperatures between 18 °C (64 °F) and 30 °C (86.0 °F).
• Winters are rather cold.
• There are with average temperatures around 3 °C (37.4 °F) in the northwest and 6 °C (21 °F) in the northeast.
• Precipitation falls throughout the year.
• The warmest region in Poland is Lower Silesian that is located in south-western Poland.

Location on Google Maps

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How to get to Poland?

1. By plane
• Most of Europe’s major airlines fly to and from Poland.
• Poland’s national carriers are LOT Polish Airlines.
• There are also a number of low cost airlines that fly to Poland. These include:
– WizzAir
– EasyJet
– Germanwings
– Norwegian
– Ryanair
There are also direct flights from United States and Canada. LOT operates direct flights from:
– Toronto
– New York
– Chicago
– Non-direct flights from other cities
International airlines fly mainly to Warsaw (WAW). Other major airports in Poland are:
– Krakow
– Katowice
– Gdask
– Pozna
– Wrocaw
– Szczecin
– Rzeszow
– Bydgoszcz
A new terminal has been opened at the Warsaw Chopin airport which will significantly increase the airport’s capacity.

2. By Train
Direct connections with:
• Berlin
• Amsterdam, via Koeln, Hannover
• Kiev via Lviv
• Vienna
• Prague
• Moscow

3. By Car
You can enter Poland by one of many roads linking Poland with the neighboring countries.

4. By Bus
There are many international bus lines that connect major Polish cities.
• Voyager
• Eurolines
• Ecolines
• PolskiBus.com
• Simple Express

5. By Boat
• From Sweden
– Ystad by Unity Line
– Karlskrona by Stena Line
– Nynashamn
– Visby
– Ystad by Polferries

• From Denmark
– Copenhagen
– Bornholm

• From Finland
– Helsinki by Finnlines

• From Germany
– Rostock by Finnlines

6. By Yacht
There are more and more ports along Polish coast. Bigger marinas are located in:
– Szczecin
– Eba
– Hel
– Gdynia
– Gdask

7. By plane
– Polish national carrier LOT has daily connections.
– These are between the biggest cities with a hub in Warsaw.

8. By train
– In Poland, the national railway carriers are PKP InterCity and Przewozy Regionalne.
– There are few local carriers that belong to voivod ships or major cities.
– Train tickets are quite economical.
There are new InterCity routes such as:
• Warsaw – Katowice
• Warsaw – Krakow
• Warsaw – Pozna
• Pozna – Szczecin
Train types
• E-IC (ExpressInterCity) / EC (EuroCity) / Ex (Express)
• TLK (Twoje Linie Kolejowe)
• RE (RegioEkspress)
• IR (InterRegio)
• REGIO / Osobowy
• Podmiejski
• Narrow gauge

Some Travel Books on Poland

Poland Lonely Planet Poland Poland: A Unique Country & Its People

Places to stay (hotels / restaurants along with website / contact numbers)

Hotels at tripadvisor.in
Hotels at staypoland.com
Hotels at travelpoland.com

Blogs / Sites about Poland

Blogs at wikipedia.org
Blogs at bialystok.opoka.org.pl
Blogs at triposo.com
Blogs and reviews at polandtraveltours.com

Images and photos of Poland

Images at google.com
Images at wikipedia.org
Images at mapofpoland.net
Images at commons.wikimedia.org

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