Old Market Square
Poznań’s Old Market Square is ringed by picturesque tenement houses in which you can find restaurants, cafes and pubs with unique atmospheres. The small, characteristic houses, formerly merchants’ dwellings, which stand to the south of the Town Hall, are particularly beautiful. Without a doubt the Square’s most important building is the Town Hall. One of the finest examples of Renaissance architecture in Poland, it was designed by the Italian master, Giovanni Battista Quadro of Lugano. Every day at 12 noon crowds of Poznanians and tourists congregate in front of the Town Hall and wait until two metal billy-goats appear on the tower and clash heads 12 times. They are a tourist attraction and a symbol of Poznań, a sight that bring delight, not only to the young. The pillory, traditionally the meeting place for Poznań citizens, stands in front of the Town Hall.
Ostrów Tumski island
The most important events in Poland’s history are written in the annals of Ostrów Tumski. Formerly the cathedral island, this is one of Poznań’s most enchanting districts and abounds in monuments of historical value. Dominating the district is the Cathedral, which houses the tombs of Poland’s first rulers: Mieszko I and Boleslav the Brave. It was also the site of the first bishopric in the Polish lands. After a visit to its most important sights, let yourself enjoy the historical atmosphere of Ostrów Tumski and the charm of its peaceful side streets.
Poznań Parish Church and the post-Jesuit Collegiate Complex
From the Old Market Square it is just a short walk to Poznań Parish Church, one of Poland’s finest Baroque churches. There is a saying that you don’t have to go to Rome to encounter Roman Baroque, you only have to visit Poznań’s Parish Church. It also owes its fame to the remarkable pipe organ built by the 19th century organ master, Friedrich Ladegast. Adjacent to the Parish Church stands the former Jesuit College complex, one of Poznań’s most elegant buildings. It was here that Napoleon Bonaparte stayed on his expedition to Moscow in 1806. Today, the Collegiate buildings are the headquarters of Poznań City Hall.
The Imperial Castle and Castle Quarter
The Poznań residence of the German Kaiser Wilhelm II was the last castle erected for this ruler. Built at the beginning of the 20th century, the castle is the focal point of what was once the ‘Castle Quarter’. The building is also testament to over one hundred years of Prussian occupation of Poznań. Apart from the Quarter’s monumental edifices, which house the headquarters of scientific and cultural institutions, the Poznań 1956 monument attracts the visitor’s eye. Two crosses commemorate the victims of events in 1956, when Poznań was the scene of the country’s first protests against its Communist rulers. Today, the castle houses the “Zamek” Cultural Centre, the Animation Theatre, restaurants, pubs and many other institutions.
One the largest and most unusual of its kind in Europe, Poznań’s Palm House is located at the heart of the historic T. W. Wilson Park. The exhibits include subtropical and tropical vegetation, water and desert plants, and also exotic birds and aquaria with tropical fish.
Exceptional natural surroundings, well-developed restaurant services, professional sports facilities, and above all, an all-year ski slope, all make the picturesque and centrally located Lake Malta the favourite place for recreation for all Poznanians. Every year rowers and canoeists compete here in championships at the European and world level and this is also the site of start and finish line for Poland’s biggest marathon. Malta is an ideal place for daily recreation, too, where Poznanians jog, rollerblade, cycle, sunbathe on the lawns or just relax. Located just a few minutes from the Old Market Square, Malta is often the venue for magnificent outdoor events. The Malta Ski Sports and Recreation Centre, with its 150-metre all year ski slope, is located next to the lake. Skiers and snowboarders can use the two lifts: a drag lift and chair lift. A learner slope for beginners is next to the main slope. The Centre also has a summer toboggan run, rollerblade and cycle hire, a mini golf course and numerous children’s playgrounds. For thrill-seekers there is also a climbing wall.
Termy Maltańskie recreation complex
Termy Maltańskie is a true paradise not only for sportsmen and active recreation enthusiasts, but also for those who love blissful idleness and relaxation. The Termy complex guarantees you a place to relax all year round, whether inside the building, or out in the fresh air. Its facilities include: an Olympic-size swimming pool, a diving pool with a highboard, an aquapark with over a dozen pools (including a saltwater pool), water slides and an outdoor beach, plus sauna facilities offering 14 types of sauna and baths, each individually designed and equipped to the very highest European standards. All these attractions, together with the truly relaxing atmosphere and natural greenery, make it an unmissable opportunity for visitors to Poznań.
Located in the vicinity of Lake Malta, the Zoological Gardens is a unique attraction for even the most demanding tourist! The forest surroundings and abundant lakes provide over 2,000 species with conditions similar to their natural habitat. The Zoo’s main attractions are its elephants and tigers. To get to the Zoological Gardens it’s worth taking the “Maltanka” narrow gauge railway, pulled by the oldest working diesel railcar in Europe.
Shopping, cinema, maybe an art exhibition? Tourists and Poznanians don’t have to choose between these options because the Old Brewery offers them all. This shopping, arts and business centre was built on the site of the former Hugger brewery, whose origins date to 1844. Fragments were used in the reconstruction process with the original late-19th-century bricks becoming part of the new building. The result is a building which has become an icon of modern-day Poznań architecture.