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The Royal Castle, Warsaw

The pride and joy of Warsaw's Old Town is the Royal Castle and its surrounding square, "Plac Zamkowy," in the local tongue. As all of its fellow Old Town (re)constructions, the Castle stands as a testament to the city's phoenix-like resilience. In fact, this monument was so dutifully recreated, that its new facade garnered the privilege of being included on the UNESCO list.

An absolute must, when visiting the castle, are the Royal Apartments and State Rooms. These make for a good trip in their own right. However, couple that with some world-class exhibitions and you've got yourself some solid weekend plans. Here you'll find a few top-notch regular exhibitions as well as one-off presentations of the highest calibre. Be sure to check our events calendar for special concerts at the castle.

You cannot get anywhere near the Royal Castle without noticing the Sigismond Column (Kolumna Zygmunta). Built in 1644 to commemorate Kind Sigismond III Vasa, this impressive structure honours the ruler who in 1596 moved the capital from Krakow to Warsaw (a day which lives in infamy, in the minds of Krakovians, at least...).

The Constitution of 3 May 1791 was drafted here by the Four-Year Sejm. In the 19th century, after the collapse of the November Uprising, it was used as an administrative center by the Tsar. Between 1926 and World War II the palace was the seat of the Polish president, Ignacy Moscicki. After the devastation done by Nazis during the Warsaw Uprising, the Castle was rebuilt and reconstructed. In 1980, Royal Castle, together with the Old Town was registry in UNESCO World Heritage Site. Today it is a historical and national monument, and is listed as a national museum.

Warsaw

Warsaw is the capital and largest city of Poland. It is located on the Vistula River roughly 260 kilometres (160 mi) from the Baltic Sea and 300 kilometres (190 mi) from the Carpathian Mountains. Its population as of June 2010 was estimated at 1,716,855, and the Warsaw metropolitan area at approximately 2,631,902. The area of the city covers 516.9 square kilometres (199.6 sq mi), while the city's agglomeration covers 6,100.43 square kilometres (2,355.39 sq mi) (Warsaw Metro Area – Obszar Metropolitalny Warszawy). Warsaw is the 9th largest city in the European Union by population.
"Warszawianka" is widely considered the unofficial anthem of Warsaw. On 9 November 1940 the City of Warsaw was awarded the Silver Cross of Poland's supreme military decoration for courage in the face of the enemy, the Order Virtuti Militari for the heroic defence in 1939.
Warsaw is also known as the "phoenix city", as it recovered from extensive damage during World War II (during which 80% of its buildings were destroyed), being rebuilt with the effort of Polish citizens. Warsaw has given its name to the Warsaw Confederation, Warsaw Pact, the Duchy of Warsaw, Warsaw Convention, Treaty of Warsaw, Warsaw Uprising and the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. (Source: Warsaw-life & wikipedia)

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Additional Photos by George Rumpler (Budapestman) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 8900 W: 3 N: 20435] (82620)
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