As we said in our previous blog posts, Wola Justowska is the most luxurious district of Krakow. Situated in the outskirts of the city, the area is characterised by trees and villas, with the occasional landmark popping up every other kilometer. It is these landmarks that drew our attention during our last visit: scattered around town, these historical remnants tell the story of the neighbourhood’s interesting past.
– Park Decjusza was created by Italian architects around 1535 on the street of Queen Jadwiga. Most of the trees were destroyed during World War I by troops stationed here, but they have been replanted. As a result, the park has become the most appreciated green area of Wola Justowska. Nowadays you can find several monuments here that refer to the park’s history, such as the Gallery, Chopin Monument and Piwnicy pod Baranami, a 60-year old building providing a stage for comedians and musicians.
– Łące Męczeństwa is a monument to the memory of the victims of Nazi persecution in the neighbourhood. In the meadow, where dozens of inhabitants were killed, you can now find a tombstone engraved with the names of the fallen.
– Villa Decjusz is a manor house built around 1530 in Renaissance style, later remodeled in Baroque style around 1620. People can visit the three-floor villa and admire the garden from its towers. It was named after Justus Decjusz the Elder, a notable Polish diplomat of German origin. Today, a wing of the villa houses the modern Erasmus Hotel.
– At the end of Kasztanowa Street you can find several wooden buildings, including an 18th-century inn and a timber granara built in 1764. The most iconic building is the church, that was burnt out twice and therefore does not look that old from the outside. The inside tells a different story, however, as the age-old foundations are still intact.
– The Marshal Jozef Pilsudski Mound is the youngest and largest of the four mounds of Krakow, situated on top of Sowiniec Hill located in Wolski Forest. There have been attempts to destroy it, but the Committee for the Protection of the Jozef Pilsudski Mound has succeeded in preserving it. Today it is one of the best viewpoints of the neighbourhood.
– In the Las Wolski forest you can not only be surrounded by nature, but also jump into the long history of Wola Justowska. The area boasts the Jurassic Bielańskie and Przegorzalskie rocks, as well as an age-old church and a beautiful zoo.
This is a map that highlights are the landmarks:
(Or click here)
By engaging with the locals over the past few days, we learned that the main interest is the conservation of the area to protect common heritage. Several people pointed out that they not only like the green space around them, but that they also appreciate historical monuments. These aspects of the neighbourhood need to be emphasised to restore a sense of local pride and awareness. In the past, there have been demonstrations against enterprises and the local government that wanted to transform these sites into commercial hubs, but the people identify themselves with these landmarks and therefore want to preserve the current status quo. We think that the trail appeals the citizens’ interests, because it prevents the destruction of important historical landmarks. In addition, we can help people in strengthening their sense of community by highlighting the common good and promote interaction among citizens on the route itself.
– Signs on the road that indicate the route;
– Small sign that indicate the monument itself;
– Event on the first day;
– Promotion on Krakow tourism website;
– Promotion on the website of the neighbourhood;
– Flyers at tourist office;
– Inform local clubs;
– Inform the local school;
Tomorrow is D-Day, which means we will do some more ‘engaging’ with the local residents and propose them our plan. We will be presenting our project to our fellow students tomorrow!