Elbląg - Old City
Historical Towns and Villages
It is worth to see Elbląg, the oldest and the second biggest city in the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship, from above – from one of the tallest church towers in Poland – the tower of the Cathedral of St Nicholas, which is 95 metres tall. The city was given town privileges in 1246. It used to be an important port town, belonging to the Hanseatic League. Up until 1309, the headquarters of the Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem was located here.
After the Second Peace of Thorn, between 1466 and 1772 Elbląg belonged to Poland, and under the reign of King Sigismund II Augustus it was an important military and commercial port, connected with the entire world known by the contemporary Europeans. Standing on the observation deck, visitors will be able to see a wide panorama of the city and its surroundings. The Old Town was completely destroyed in 1945 and later the process of rebuilding began according to the old urban plans, however the new buildings were built using modern technologies and original stylistics, which was a unique undertaking. Nowadays the Old Town stuns with its beauty. Visitors may get acquainted with the history of the city as well as the results of archaeological excavations in the museum, located in a preserved part of the castle. Among other monuments which are interesting for the visitors are the City Gate (Brama Targowa), St Mary’s Church (which currently houses an art gallery – Galeria EL), the old Holy Ghost Church with hospital (currently a library) and a Town Hall, rebuilt in a modern form. A sea port and industrial facilities can be seen near the Old Town. Modern Elbląg is an important industrial centre, focusing on machine and electrotechnical industry.
The city also houses universities and other institutions of higher education, a drama theatre and other cultural institutions. It may also serve as a great starting point for all tourists who want to see the north-western part of the region by riding on the Green Velo Trail.