Welcome to the latest in my series of Dlaczego Kochamy Polskę (Why we love Poland) where I interview people (both Polish and non-Polish) who have a love for Poland, and normally work here, blog about it or share photos from Poland. The latest person to feature is Piotr who runs the site Visit Poland. If you also love Poland, live in Poland or blog in Poland and want to be included in the series, please get in touch with me!
Where in Poland do you live?
I’m native Polish and I live in Jelenia Góra. It’s a city in Lower Silesia, south-western Poland. With a beautiful mountains (Karkonosze Mountain Range), large number of spectacular palaces, beautiful historic gardens and other attractions, the Jelenia Góra valley is often nicknamed “The Pearl of Karkonosze”. Jelenia Góra is located in a polish-german-czech triangle. Within 1 hour I can be in Czech Republic and within 2 hours I can be in Germany…by bike.
Jelenia Góra is a middle size town, not too big, not too small…and everything is here: clubs, cinemas, theatre, beautiful women and what’s very important-a lot of mountains and forests surrounding the city.
I really love this city and can’t imagine to live somewhere else. I like travelling but Jelenia Góra is my place on the planet. I was born here and I will die here; maybe my ashes will be thrown out from the top of the Śnieżka Mountain 😉
You can see Jelenia Góra and surroundings and why Canadian lady with Scottish roots has chosen Jelenia Góra over Ecuador on video on this site: http://visitpoland.eu/my-town/
When did you first travel abroad?
I don’t exactly remember when I visited surrounding countres like Czech and Germany at the very first time. On the other hand I remember very well when I organised my first serious cycling tour through 19 capitals and 21 countries in Europe (http://www.euro.bike.h2g.pl/). It was in 2010 and second part in 2011 and that’s how crazy rollercoaster of travelling across different countries and continents has begun…and still last.
What is your favourite city and town in Poland and why?
I don’t have one. There are tens of small, little and middle size gems hidden in Poland. In 2018 I cycled 3750 km’s around Poland and for me-the south, mountainous part of Poland with small towns basked in the summer sun and surrounded by Tatra Mountains, Bieszczady Mountains are very compelling. Some of them are: Sanok, Nowy Targ, Nowy Sącz, Tarnów, Krościenko nad Dunajcem.
I’m not very big fan of flat terrains like those on the north. I can visit north from time to time, lie on the beach for a 15-max.30 min. 😉 but my place is on the south.
In this year (2020) I combined all best Polish cycling routes and cycled 1541 km’s through them:
Loop around Tatry+Velo Dunajec+Szlakiem “Watahy”+Velo Czorsztyn+Trasa Wiślana+Szlakiem Orlich Gniazd and those places are really beautiful (pictures: https://www.facebook.com/piotr.jedrzejak.10/posts/3456536044396650) and I really recommend those places for people interested in discovering real Poland…shortly speaking Poland is much, much more than Krakow J And for all who like Krakow I suggest to visit Zamość!
If anybody will be interested about Polish cycling routes then feel free to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org). I can send you cycling maps etc.
What is your favourite village in Poland and why?
I won’t say it’s my favourite one but for sure it’s quite unique. Zalipie known as “The Painted Village,” where nearly every house in the village has been decorated with intricate floral patterns in a tradition that dates back almost a hundred years. The belief is that the habit of painting flowers on the walls began in the days when soot and smoke issued from everyone’s tiny wood-burning stoves. As the black marks from the soot appeared on the interior and exterior walls of the homes in Zalipie, the women would simply cover them with painted flowers. And that’s how it all started and last till today.
What is your favourite province in Poland and why?
Dolnośląskie cause it’s very diversified in terms of landscape, mountainous terrain, remnants from II World War. For the people who like medieval castles…you can’t miss it! Literally hundreds of them still in relatively very good condition.
Why do you like living in Poland?
Strong patriotic values in Polish people, sincerity of the Polish people, attractive and elegant women, tasty food, life style, beautiful towns, diversity-moutains on the south, sea on the north, lakes, forests, National Parks, abundance of wild animals…those are just few benefits of living in Poland.
What is your favourite Polish drink and why?
I don’t have one.
What is your favourite Polish food and why?
Pierogi. Give me 15, I will eat 20. Give me 20, I will eat 25…and so on ;)) In terms of pierogi I’m spreading the chaos on the plates. I’m brutal and merciless haha:D
What is your favourite random fact about Poland?
Paradoxically I think I’m living here too long to notice one favourite fact about Poland. I will express this as follows: I just like that Poland is as it is and in my opinion should remain as it is now and carry on with present course of development and economy. We’re on a good track!
If you didn’t live in Poland, where would you live?
In Thailand. I like mentality of people up there, fact they’re smiling so often and food or somewhere in South America from the same reasons.
Finally I like reading a blogs run by foreigners who live in Poland cause it gives me an extra interesting perspective about Poland so if you have one then just say hello at email@example.com and share your blog with me J
Piotr media channels:
Piotr-Polish language teacher: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JrgPcGDBHVo
Piotr-Private Tour Guide (Hike&Bike): http://real.visitpoland.eu/
Youtube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBOfirSn7kJxN380tHQl-ww/
Bicycle Tours: http://www.roweremdookolapolski.h2g.pl/