World War II forts built in the Węgierska Górka Municipality area in 1939. Bunkers: “WĘDROWIEC”, “WALIGÓRA”, “WĄWÓZ”, “WŁÓCZĘGA” and “WYRWIDĄB” are examples of Polish fortress buildings. Węgierska Górka became famous with the heroic defence during the September Campaign in 1939. The”WĘDROWIEC” is the monument of national memory, which is the home of the museum created in 1993. The museum is open from April to September from Tuesday to Friday 10.00-17.00, on Saturdays 9.00-16.00 and Sundays 12.00-17.00, whereas from October to April from Monday to Friday it is open 10.00-15:00, after prior arrangement by telephone.
Fort “WALIGÓRA” is located near the red trail of Barania Góra and is easily accessible. You can see the bullet holes located on the walls of the fort. The interior is unfortunately not suitable for exploring, although the body of this fortification itself makes a great impression. Another one is the “WĄWÓZ” fort, which was captured by German troops. Yet in September 1939 German sappers blew the “WĄWÓZ” up. Despite the damage the time has already made and war, a considerable part of the building has been preserved. The fort is located about 1km from the fort “WĘDROWIEC” towards Żabnica. “WŁÓCZĘGA”, built on the eastern slopes of the mountain Glinne is located about 100 meters south of the “WALIGÓRA” and the last of the five forts, “WYRWIDĄB”, built on the same hill as “WĄWÓZ” a few dozen meters from the latter, in the highest part of the hill. The facility has not been completed until the outbreak of war. During the defence battles it could serve only as a passive bunker.
“Imperial route”, educational path, the route designated along the road commonly known as “Cesarka”, built in the 12th century as a communication route connecting Kraków with Vienna. Along the route, which is about 2km long, there are 9 thematic boards, vantage point as well as places to rest. Approximate time required to walk: 2.5h.
“Gościnny Las”, natural path in the Forestry Management of Węgierska Górka, located at the seat of the Forestry Management of Węgierska Górka. There is also Nature and Forest Education Centre in the neighbourhood.
The place is perfectly adapted to giving lectures and to projections relating to flora and fauna of surrounding areas. In addition to many interesting facts, one can take a look at the exhibition of animals, which are increasingly difficult to meet in the wild – lecture and free of charge demonstration.
“Stara chałupa” (from Polish “The old shack”) in Milówka, located on 1 Piastowska St., is undoubtedly on of the oldest examples of folk architecture. There is the shack construction date engraved in the chamber – the year 1739. Local legend says that the King John Casimir stayed there overnight when he was fleeing from Swedes. However, no source information confirms this fact. John III Sobieski was also here to stay overnight during the Vienna expedition. This place is ideal to depict ancient customs, legends and lifestyles to young but also older people. The museum is open from Tuesday to Friday, 9.00-14.00 and on Saturdays, 10.00-14.00. Normal ticket: 4 PLN, reduced ticket: 2 PLN, guide: 10 PLN.
“Leśny Gród” (“Forest Castle”) in Milówka, botanical garden that delights with richness of oriental flora. Here you can traces of Mayan, Aztec and Inca culture. Everything here is made of wood and stone, and the main “equipment” of this place is the vegetation mostly of Asian origin, animals are a substitute of the zoo, and about 1.5 million of flowers – a real botanical garden. Numerous ponds with swimming fish, frogs and turtles. Places to rest and reflection with swings and other attractions. Walking down the winding paths of the garden, you cannot miss the statue of Świętowit, which was entered into the Guinness Book Records. At the moment, the garden is open for groups. Individual guests can explore part of the garden. Opening hours: 10.00-18.00 (depending on weather conditions).
St. Catherine Church in Cięcina, its oldest part built in 1542, rung among the most valuable monuments of not only Cięcina but also the region of Żywiec. Inside the church you can admire the magnificent baroque altars from 17th century, the chapel of St. Francis from 1895, and a cup-shape stone font from 1705. The church is on the Wooden Architecture Route of Silesian Voivodeship.
St. Magdalene Graveyard Chapel in Milówka, the present chapel was built in 1857, there is a painting of Mary Magdalene in the main altar and a statue of Christ at the pillar from 1710 placed above the entrance to the chapel.
Jewish cemetery in Milówka, established in the late 19th century, the oldest preserved matzeva dates from 1892. During the occupation most of the matzevas were destroyed, it was only in the 90’s when renovations had begun.
St. Anthony Chapel in Milówka, the history of the chapel dates back to 1716. Local legend says that about the location of the chapel in the place from which the King John III Sobieski set off to relief Vienna. The king was to be the first sponsor of the chapel. Wooden chapel was destroyed and a new bricked one was completed in 1911.
Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Miłówka, the construction of the church made of bricks began in 1834, which serves parishioners up to now. The local county was the sponsor of the church. Over time, the church was enriched with altars, ornate polychromy and stained glass windows.
Church dedicated to Mother of God of Częstochowa in Żabnica, the construction of the wooden church was begun in 1910. Lumber for church building was provided by residents of Żabnica and by Archduke Charles Stephen of Austria.
St. Maximilian Kolbe Church in Cisiec, built in an unusual circumstances. In November 1972, residents of Cisiec build the church over one day on previously prepared foundation, despite the explicit prohibition from authorities.
The Private Museum “Ocalenie” (“Salvation”) in Cisiec Mały. It is worth a visit because of its uniqueness. The creator of the museum has exhibited folk outfits, instruments and sculptures. He can talk in a very interesting way, and embellishes his stories playing heligonka.
The palace and manor complex in Kamesznica village, built in the years 1830-1833 on the initiative of the then owners, Teresa and Marcel Potocki. Currently, the entire manor and palace complex is entered in the register of monuments in Poland and is located within Żywiec Landscape Park.
Waterfall in Sopotnia Wielka, the highest waterfall in the Beskid Mountains with a height of 12m, declared as a natural monument. There is also a group of old trees nearby (some pines and a larch-tree), a statue of inhabitants killed during World War II stands between them.
Żywiec, reference to Żywiec appears already in 1308, named the capital of the Beskids, situated in the picturesque basin which covers the area of over 100 m2, at the confluence of rivers Soła and Koszarawa, on the Żywiec Lake. It is surrounded by magnificent mountain peaks on all sides. A noteworthy addition to the walks through the winding streets in this charming town is the Old Castle, which houses the City Museum. The New Castle and English-style park, The Habsburg Palace and Chinese House are also worth attention.
Żywiec Brewery Museum, the largest and most modern facility of such kind in Poland. The brewery was founded in 1856 by the Habsburg Archduke. Visitors will actively learn the history of Żywiec Brewery and its contemporariness. Ticket price: 15 to 30 PLN.
Żar Mountain (761 MASL), one of the world’s largest pumped-storage plant, where an artificial water reservoir is, which can hold 2.5 million m3 of water drawn from the lake located about 440m below. The water falls inside the mountain Żar and drives the turbine of the power plan. A Rope Park called Monkey Grove and a toboggan run are additional attractions on the mountain Żar. There is also 1600m ski slope, artificially snowed, illuminated and with sound system.
Bielsko-Biała, the capital of Podbeskidzie, “Little Vienna”, and numerous monuments and tourist attractions in it. Worth visiting is the Old Town Square – the heart of the medieval Bielsko. surrounded by baroque-classicist tenements of 17th -18th centuries. The tenements were rebuilt in the 19th century after repeated fires. The Town Hall, Polish Theatre and the building of Poczta Polska are also noteworthy. You should also take the cableway to enjoy the panoramic view of Bielsko-Biała.
Wadowice is a town in Małopolskie Voivodeship, located in the Silesian Foothills on the river Skawa. The birthplace of Pope John Paul II, visited by Polish, tourists from abroad and pilgrims. Noteworthy are: John Paul II Family Home, The Town Museum (one of the oldest building in the town), Smaller Bailica of the Presentation of the Lord, Emil Zegadłowicz Museum, Monastery of the Discalced Carmelite Fathers, St. Joseph Sanctuary “Na górce” of 1899, Karol Hagenhuber’s patisserie.
Pętla Beskidzka, Koniaków sightseeing – where famous throughout Poland lace-made products come from, Istebna sightseeing – where you can see so-called “Kurna chata”, Wisła sightseeing with Beskidzkie Museum, The President’s Castle and ski jump, and Ustroń sightseeing with taking the cableway to Czantoria hill.
Oświęcim and Auschwitz Birkenau Museum, which is the place of commemoration of the most horrible in the history of the world factory of death – a concentration camp built by the German. It makes a powerful impression on the visitors, as it allows at least partially to imagine the scale of the Holocaust.