Poland, Auschwitz - Remembering the Holocaust
These days we commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. One of the most important milestones in our history is remembered through a visit to the Polish city of Auschwitz, which is located at the mouth of the river Soly to the Vistula in the Lesser Poland Voivodeship.
The city of Auschwitz became infamous for the presence of the Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II - Birkenau concentration camps (inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1979), which became Germany's largest extermination camps. Today, they have been transformed into a dignified memorial to the horrors of genocide and at the same time become a symbol of the Holocaust, which humanity will hopefully never allow again.
In addition to the main gate of the former Březinka camp, one of the most photographed places in the concentration camps is the entrance gate of the Auschwitz camp with the inscription Arbeit Macht Frei (Work liberates you), which still documents perverted camouflage. The incoming prisoners (transports) should have thought that the work would redeem them from the camp.
The conditions of the prisoners were more than catastrophic. At first they slept on straw, later there were more wooden bunk beds with a weak blanket at best. Hundreds of them crowded in one room. The menu consisted of strange herbal coffee, soup (often "dirty" water) and a piece of bread. Out of desperation, hungry prisoners resorted to eating some clothing, plaster, or even cannibalism. In addition to construction work, they tested new drugs and experimented with them.
The local gas chambers were built to resemble washrooms, where they sent mostly children, incapable of work or the elderly to "clean up". Brothels, a theater and a cinema for the "chosen ones" were also set up in the concentration camps. A common part of life was a match, where defeat meant death and victory one day of life.
The number of victims is still unclear, but according to the Auschwitz Museum itself, over 1 and a half million have died here. However, some sources report up to 2 and a half million victims. In the gas chambers, the Nazis were able to kill 6,000 people a day, but many more died from malnutrition and ill-treatment. More than 65 and a half thousand people were deported from Slovakia, of whom just over 300 survived.
Altogether, more than 600 prisoners escaped from Auschwitz, but almost half of them were caught around the camp and executed. The most famous successful escape was the escape of Slovak Jews Walter Rosenberg and Alfred Wetzler, who arrived in Slovakia in 1944 and reported to the world on deadly machinery in concentration camps that the "Western world" allegedly did not know about.
Before liberation, the Nazis tried to disguise traces of mass murder, destroyed deadly buildings, took thousands of prisoners on death marches, and so after the arrival of the Red Army (January 27, 1945), "only" 7650 were killed in the camps for the deaths of exhausted prisoners. After a short time, however, warehouses were documented, where tons of human hair, hundreds of thousands of pieces of clothing, suitcases, glasses, over 40,000 pairs of shoes and many other artifacts were found..
We encourage everyone to visit one of these monuments of human perversion and to remember where "innocent" speeches and endorsements of extremists have led.
GPS: 50°02'03.6"N 19°10'53.3"E
Text and photos: Oskár Mažgút
Would you like to visit a place which was written with black letters into modern history? Do you have a feeling that „holocaust“ is a legend? So, would you visit concentration lagers Oswiecim I and Oswiecim II- Brezinka, (Birkenau) exterminated lager for death, destined from Czech borders not more than 100 kilometres.
After visiting the famous brewery, today we will head to the town of Żywiec itself. This city of 30,000 is an ideal starting point for hiking in the Western Beskydy Mountains, it also offers recreation at the picturesque Żywiec Dam and attractive sights with an engaging history.
This time we will set out to explore southern Poland, more precisely the city of Żywiec, which lies at the confluence of the rivers Koszarawa and Soła in the Silesian Voivodeship. We start in a local brewery founded in 1856, which produces one of the most famous beers in Poland.
Summer holidays are an ideal time for family trips, so today we invite you to one of these. Our destination will be the Polish village of Nedeca (Niedzica), located in the Spis region, near the Slovak border in Lesser Poland.
Approximately 50 kilometers southwest of Krakow lies the almost 20,000-strong town of Wadowice, famous as the birthplace of Karol Wojtyla, later Pope John Paul II. Today we will not only follow in the footsteps of the Pope, but also look into history.
Rádi byste se prošli podél moře, ale nechce se vám nikam daleko? Pokud ano, máme tu pro vás dnes tip na místo, které je Čechy celkem opomíjeno. Nemusíte jet tisíce kilometrů, nemusíte překonávat svůj strach z létání. Stačí, když sednete do auta a můžete si udělat krásný prodloužený víkend v Kolobrzegu.
The largest city of Poland and also the capital of the country. Only sledomly people imagine it an interesting place worthy making a trip. We were very hesitant if to go there at first. It takes 8 hours by train from Prague (for considerable amount of money you can buy a night train). A flight ticket costs around 3000. Eventually, we decided for the cheapest option – a day train ride (a return ticket costs about 1400 Czech crowns).
"The Jews are a race which must be totally exterminated!" This is a quotation of Hans Frank, Governor General of Poland, occupied by Nazis. This sentence is expressing all. Total extirpation, this was main style of concentration camps. Even in Oswiecim, the Nazis murdered one million of Jews. So, even now, the Jews belong to frequent visitors there.
Oswiecim (Auschwitz) is the biggest concentration camp of Europe, where the final solution of Jewish question was let to its nearly perfect finish. The Germans murded there - in the course of 1940-1945 - one million and one hundred thousands of people!
Are you about to visit Krakow, Warsaw or the Polish side of the Giant Mountains? Look first at what traditions are here and what you have to do good. Our neighbors have a lot of similar traditions and holidays as we do, and the kitchen is quite similar, but some differences could be found there.
Our today’s journey across world cities is set in Lodz, a city couple of hundred kilometers northeast from Prague.
It would be a sin not to return once more to a city such as Poznan. Today, we go here to learn more about the capital of Greater Poland Voivodeship.
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In our countries, the Middle Bohemian period is still often perceived as the Dark Age. But it was during these "dark" times that many of our greatest treasures of art created by such masters as Karel Skreta, Jan Blaze Santini Aichl and the Dientzenhofers emerged to light . And the glorious Baroque treasures, which were created during the Thirty Years' War, are also pride in neighboring Poland. Indeed, a piece of today's Poland was part of the Bohemian Crown.
In the coming weeks, we will discover the wonderful natural and cultural attractions of the Duchy of Lesser Poland. Our starting point will be the city of Zakopane, which is also a social center of the whole region.
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Enchanted by our past trip to the Gubałówka and Butorowy Wierch mountains, today we set out to explore other breathtaking places in Lesser Poland. This time we head to the village of Poronin, which is located about 7 kilometers from Zakopane.
Church towers looming above your heads, dwarves at your legs, calm breath of history, quick pulse of European city. And squirrels, squirrels everywhere. This is Wrocław.
The fact that the Polish mountains are often neglected by the Czechs is pity. However, mountains in Poland are comparable to the Krkonose or the Tatras in Slovakia. However, some consider Poland to be cheaper. We consider it a must go!
Cracow was Polish capital in past. Now, this city belongs to most beautiful architectonical jewels of Europe. The whole town is respiring with Middle Age, and such impression is stressed even with unusual big number of green surface which is frequently missing in big towns.
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