Poland becomes more and more popular with tourists and if you go to Warsaw, Krakow or Gdansk, you will be surprised by how many people speak English on the streets. But Poland is so much more than just those three (absolutely beautiful) cities. Here’s why you should visit Slupsk, a city nobody goes to, but should.
The city is known for a lot of things, but my favorite is the Witch Tower. It was built in the XV century and initially, it was part of the city defense walls. In the XVII century, when the defense system was modernized, this tower was changed into a prison. It was assigned to “host” women accused of witchcraft during their “process”. It was a place of torture and preparation for the death sentences. In this place, the very last Polish witch – Anna Kosbad – lost her life in 1714. The legend has it that those women tortured spirits are still in there. Sometimes, if you listen closely, you can hear them laugh.
Nowadays the Tower holds an Art Galery, it is a meeting place for the young and curious.
The Griffins Castle
The Griffins were the dynasty of Pomeranian dukes ruling in West Pomerania from the 12th to the 17th century. The name of the family was formed in the 15th century and was taken from the griffin, which family members used as their coat of arms from 1214. Pomeranian Dukes’ Castle in Słupsk was built in 1507 during the reign of Duke Bogusław X. In the 16th and 17th centuries, the castle was the residence of Pomeranian dukes from the Griffin dynasty. Currently, the castle is the seat of the Museum of Central Pomerania.
In the freshly renovated Bialy Spichlerz you will find the biggest collection in the world of Witkacy (Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz) works. Witkacy was an excentric Polish artist, novel writer, and painter. Amongst others, he is known for his Portrait Company. He would paint portraits of people while being under the influence of a drug (or a few). He would write on the painting which drugs they were and in what quantity. Here are some examples.
Here‘s a detailed description of this company and its purpose. Use Google Translation plugin.
The lucky bear
If you are in Slupsk, don’t forget to look for the Lucky Bear. In 1887, an amber amulet in the shape of a bear was found underneath the city grounds. It turns out, that this piece of amber was 3700 years old. You can find a copy of it in the cities Townhall. Since it became the cities mascot. Painted by the artists, the Lucky Bear statues are hidden in strategic places around the city. There are 14 of them. Can you find them all?
Where to eat
It’s in Slupks that the very first Pizza place in Poland was open. Opened in 1974, it still uses the same recipe. If you are a fan of this Italian delicacy, don’t expect too much from this place. But the Pizzeria still stands and is definitely an interesting place to stop by for a quick bite.
Address: to the right of Bar Mleczny Poranek. Map
The Bar Mleczny Poranek is also a great place to try typical, local Polish food.
How to get there
It’s fairly easy to visit Slupsk. The city is very well connected with all the main cities in the north of Poland as well as with all the little villages around it. If you are traveling from Gdansk/ Sopot/ Gdynia or Szczecin, there are trains leaving for Slupsk every hour.
Slupks is also located about 20 km from the Baltic Sea. The main coastal city closeby is Ustka, a beach resort with a long boardwalk, nice hotels, and delicious, fresh fish.