Photographer's Note

Wilanów Park atmosphere, Warsaw

The Wilanów Park forms an integral part of the Wilanów Palace and Gardens. Perfect for a pleasant walk, it is a destination of choice for Varsovians seeking to escape the hustle and bustle of the metropolis. Every year, the Park attracts a large number of tourists from all over the world.

The Palace

Wilanów Palace (Polish: Pałac w Wilanowie) is a royal palace located in the Wilanów district, Warsaw. Wilanów Palace survived the time of Poland's partitions and both World Wars and has preserved its authentic historical qualities, also is one of the most important monuments of Polish culture.
The palace and park in Wilanów is not only a priceless testimony to the splendour of Poland in the past, but also a place for cultural events and concerts, including Summer Royal Concerts in the Rose Garden and the International Summer Early Music Academy. Since 2006, the palace has been a member of the international association of European Royal Residences.

The Park

The choice of this location for a royal residence was guided by the favourable natural conditions. The combination of natural terraces and running water provided a perfect setting for a Baroque garden which relied for its impact on interesting vistas and strong visual links with the surrounding landscape. From the outset of his reign, King Jan III afforded a special degree of care for the gardens in his royal residence. The King inspected the gardens in person, planted trees and enjoyed their beauty spending long hours in his horticultural retreat. Over the centuries, the royal gardens have undergone changes as subsequent owners of the Wilanów estate expanded and modified the grounds in keeping with their personal tastes and prevailing fashions. The park owes its present shape to reconstruction work carried out to Prof. Gerard Ciołek’s design in the 1950s. The gardens now await a revitalization project to recapture their former splendour befitting a royal residence.

The 45 hectares of the Wilanów Park comprise gardens in a number of styles: a two-level Baroque garden, a neo-Renaissance rose garden, an English landscape park and an English-Chinese landscape park.

The Park can be entered through a gate from the Palace courtyard. Formerly a two-partite design, in the 19th century Stanisław Kostka Potocki had the courtyard converted into a single spacious area with an oval lawn in the centre. In spring, the courtyard is adorned by blossoming magnolias (Magnolia x soulangeana), one of the oldest examples of this species in Poland. The courtyard and the Park are separated by a pergola with a Roman gate carrying a Latin line, “Ducere soliciatae quam iucunda oblivia vitae”. Taken from Horace, the line praises a quiet country existence far from life’s cares (conservation work on the inscription is currently in progress). The pergola (designed by Francesco Maria Lanci and built along the axis extending from the north wing of the Palace, replacing replaced former stables and granaries) is overgrown with climbing vines (Vitis coignetiae) and Dutchman’s pipe (Aristolochia durior).Between the Fig Building and the Orangery, Lanci designed a romantic brickwork gate aligned with the main gate.(Source: Wilanów Palace & 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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