Interesting facts about Poland

poland flag

Poland is an eastern European country on the Baltic Sea known for its medieval architecture and Jewish heritage.

Poland is officially known as the Republic of Poland.

The neighboring countries are Germany to the west, the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south, Ukraine and Belarus to the east, Lithuania and Russia to the northeast. To the north, Poland is bordered by the Baltic Sea.

Official language is Polish.

As of 1 January 2016, the population of Poland was estimated to be 38,438,854 people.

Warsaw is the capital and largest city of Poland. Its widely varied architecture reflects the city’s long, turbulent history, from Gothic churches and neoclassical palaces to Soviet-era blocks and modern skyscrapers.

warsaw

Poland major cities are: Łódź, Krakow, Wrocław, Poznań and Gdańsk.

The peak of Rysy in the Tatra Mountains is the highest point in Poland at 2499 meters (8199 feet) outside of this mountain range most of Poland is very flat.

rysy poland

Although most of Poland’s territory is lowland, the country has amazing and versatile natural environment.

Poland’ s Baltic coast is over 500 kilometers (310 miles) in length is awaiting those who enjoy relaxing by the waterside. The great attraction of Baltic coasts lies above all in its beaches full of beautiful amber sand, often stretching for kilometers.

poland coast

There are 23 national parks in Poland.

The oldest is Bialowieski National Park, founded 86 years ago, which consists of an area of virgin forest inhabited by Europe’s largest mammals (the bison) as well as its smallest (the pygmy shrew, weighing only a few grams).

bialowieski national park

Polish forests cover about 28% of Poland’s territory.

Poland’s forests are the ideal habitat for many of Europe’s endangered species, including brown bears, wild horses, chamois goats, Eurasian lynxes and gray wolves.

wild horses poland

Poland has about 9,300 lakes, covering an area of 3,200 square kilometers (1235 square miles).

Small lakes dot the entire northern half of Poland, however their biggest concentration is in the northeastern region known as Masurian Lake District.

poland lakes

Poland has 14 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Krakow Old Town is one of the most famous old districts in Poland today and was the center of Poland’s political life from 1038 until King Sigismund III Vasa relocated his court to Warsaw in 1596. The entire medieval old town is among the first sites chosen for the UNESCO’s World Heritage List, inscribed as Cracow’s Historic Centre.

kraków old town

The Wieliczka Salt Mine is one of the largest tourist attractions in Poland, registered on the UNESCO list and visited by over a million tourists every year.The mine, built in the 13th century, produced table salt continuously until 2007, as one of the world’s oldest salt mines still in operation.Now a museum, the mine’s attractions include dozens of statues, three chapels and an entire cathedral that has been carved out of the rock salt by the miners.

wieliczka salt mine

The Castle of the Teutonic Order in Malbork is the largest castle in the world by surface area.The immense castle was started in the 13th century and built by the Teutonic Knights in stages. During the next century, when , Malbork became the capital of the Order’s state, the fortress was expanded considerably by the addition of the Great Refectory and the Grand Master’s Palace.

castle of the teutonic order in malbork

Polish astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus was the first person to propose that the Earth was not the center of the Universe.

Polish astronomer Jan Heweliusz published the earliest exact maps of the Moon.

Famous physicist, chemist and Nobel laureate Marie Curie (or Maria Sklodowska) was Polish however she lived much of her life in France.

Poland has 17 Nobel prize winners, including four Peace Prizes and five in Literature.

nobel prize

Famous musical composer Frederic Chopin was Polish and he was born in Żelazowa Wola, a village in east-central Poland.

Pope John Paul II also known as Karol Wojtyla (1920-2005) was Polish.

Bigos, in English language known as the Polish hunter’s stew, is one of national and traditional Polish courses.

bigos

A Polish state and the name Poland existed as far back as the year 966 during the reign of Mieszko I (the first Christian ruler of Poland). The Kingdom of Poland was founded shortly after in 1025.

Poland’s name, Polska, is derived from the word Polanie or “people of the fields,” the name of tribe that used to inhabit the area around Grodno and Poznań where the Polish state first arose.

Polish constitution was first in Europe, and second in the world.

The White Eagle is the national coat of arms of Poland. It is a stylized white eagle with a golden beak and talons, and wearing a golden crown, in a red shield.

coat of arms of poland

Around 35% of the 60 million Poles live abroad and large Polish speaking communities can be found in the US, Canada, UK, Germany, Australia, Brazil and Argentina.

During World War II, the Polish town of Oświeçim was the site of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camps, where at least 1.1. million Nazi prisoners were killed.

Some estimates put the number of Poles involved in rescue at up to 3 million, and credit Poles with saving up to around 450,000 Jews from certain death.

In Poland, one’s “Name Day” – imieniny – is considered a far more important occasion than one’s birthday.

Poland, and the other Baltic State Countries, are the home to the finest amber in the world. Gdansk, Poland, at the head of the ancient amber road continues as the amber capital of the world.

amber

Poland is one of the few countries in the world, where courteous hand-kissing is still a common practice.

Polish people marry the youngest within the European Union (24 years old for women and 26.5 years old for men in average).

90% of Poles have completed at least secondary education, the highest score in the EU, along with the Czechs, Slovaks, and Slovenes.

Poland is part of the “Vodka belt countries” and has a history of producing high quality vodka for more than 500 years.

Przystanek Woodstock is the biggest open-air festival in Europe–an annual free rock music festival in Poland, inspired by and named for the Woodstock Festival.

The 646.38 meters (2,120.7 feet) high Warsaw Radio Mast in Konstantynów, Poland, was the world’s tallest structure until it was intentionally collapsed on August 8, 1991

The most popular dog’s name in Poland is “Burek” which is actually the Polish word for a brown-grey colour.

The 1st floor is regarded as floor “0” so you press “1” when you want to go to the 2nd floor in the elevator.

The most “World’s Strongest Man” winners are from Poland.

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