Szlak Orlich Gniazd - The Kraków-Częstochowa Upland

Дата добавления: 29 августа 2013
The Kraków-Częstochowa Upland

The fauna of the Upland appears equally appealing, as it comprises about 70% of species occurring in Poland. Undoubtedly, its most interesting representatives are: elks that inhabit the backwoods of Dulowska Wilderness, beavers brought to the valleys of Prądnik, Rudna and Biała Przemsza, which have greatly spread now, as well as a group of 19 species of bats (out of 25 known in Poland); among birds: Eurasian Eagle-Owl, sighted in the Sokole Mountains, Black Stork nesting in the forests of Ojców and Wielki Las Reserve, or rare European Honey Buzzard, Northern Raven, Tawny Owl, Eurasian Kingfisher and Lesser Grey and Woodchat Shrikes.

Next to the animate and inanimate nature, another undeniable advantage of the Upland is the uniqueness of its cultural landscape - remnants of the old settlements, monuments of architecture and art, antique areas of green. The art of defense comes to the fore here: castles and watchtowers seated on rocks, called the Eagles' Nests. Most of them are royal forts established in the 14th century by King Casimir the Great; others are defensive residences of the aristocracy, for instance Korzkiew, Tęczyn, Smoleń, Mirów, or bishops' village, as Lipowiec or later Siewierz. Plenty of other buildings are still little known (Ostężnik). Similarly, in the area of reasearch and hypotheses are the beginnings of many of the establishments (eg. Mirów, Morsko, Olsztyn, Rabsztyn), as well as earlier establishments: gords, archaeologically dated to the period of the formation of the Polish state, such as Damice and Zagórowa on Dłubnia, Mników, Birów Mountain near Ogrodzieniec, Gąszczyk near Mstów or Wały in Wiercica Valley. However, the state of knowledge of the Jura establishments is steadily growing, as exemplified by the discovery of traces of the castle of Henry I the Bearded from 13th century near Pieskowa Skała, watchtowers from 13th / 14th century in Wodąca Valley, the remains of the castle in Kluczwody Valley, the original establishment of Ogrodzieniec castle at the top of Birów Mountain, or the oldest walls of Rabsztyn castle from 13th/14th century. However, not only the military architecture attests for of the cultural heritage of the Upland. There is also a myriad of significant historical objects representing all the epochs. To list just the most valuable ones: Romanesque churches in Wysocice and Giebel, Gothic in Bolechowice, Rudawa, Pilica and Olkusz, the 16th c. shrine in Żarki-Leśniów, Baroque religious complexes in Alwernia (partly burnt in March 2011) and Czerna, and the later 18th c. establishments: Imbramowice, Mstów or Morawica embedded in the 13th c., or perhaps even older, frames of Toporczyk-Tęczyńscy' castle. Wooden churches should also be mentioned, perhaps the last traces of old village architecture, including the oldest 16th c. churches in Modlnica, Zrębice, Paczółtowice and Racławice, hiding priceless works in their interiors: Gothic and Renaissance paintings and sculptures.

This very abbreviated historical panorama of the landmarks needs to be completed by mentioning of estates and palaces, especially of the southern part of the Uplands, from the oldest baroque residence in Siedlec, by the 18th c. ones in Karniowice, Bolechowice, Modlnica or Trzebinia, to the 19th c. palaces in Krzeszowice, Złoty Potok, Młoszowa, Balice, Płaza, as well as more modest, but very much embedded in national traditions by their form of Polish manor house, manorial estates of landed gendry such as Tarnawa, Glanów and Złoty Potok. Numerous mansions and palaces (such as Wierbka, Włodowice, Rokitno Szlacheckie) for various reasons did not last to this day, being another historic ruins on the Jura trail. The traces of the others are found in manorial buildings, such as the 17th c. storages in Pisary and Garlica, or wooden granary in Udorz.

 


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