Lanckorona is a settlement hidden in a dense forest growing on a certain mountain… it is a place with great history and the same tradition. To get there, leaving Cracow, head for Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, and in Izdebnik, turn left, continue along the winding road among the fields ... Coming from Bielsko, pass Kalwaria, in Brody turn right towards the church called Grobek. Turn left right next to the temple. You can also turn left a little higher - at the sign with the name of the town. It is a more demanding route, but how picturesque! The monastery in Kalwaria will appear to you in all its glory, in the distance you will see Babia Góra, and even further, the Cracow church in Bielany.
Lanckorona was most likely built at the turn of the 12th and 13th centuries, when German colonists founded a tiny settlement here, and a small watchtower was created on the top of Lanckorońska Mountain (545 m above sea level). Although experts on the history and culture of Lanckorona believe that the name of the town derives from the German knightly family Landeskrone, the generally accepted version is a juxtaposition of two German words Land - country and Krone - crown. A summer resort with an artistic character.
Lanckorona is a picturesque place loved by famous Polish artists: painters, artists, directors and writers. Besides, not only them. Lanckorona has its ardent admirers who prefer the attractions it offers above everything else.
Prawdziwy letniskowy boom przeżyła w latach 20. XX w., gdy gościly tu takie osobistości jak Józef Piłsudski czy Ignacy Mościcki. Wśród lasów, w zadbanych ogrodach i owocowych sadach na wczasowiczów czekały wspaniale pensjonaty i wille. Po wojnie – w latach 60. – znów stała się modna. Odpoczywali tu i tworzyli m.in. Andrzej Wajda, Daniel Olbrychski, Zofia Kucówna, Gustaw Holoubek, Jerzy Nowosielski, Adam Hanuszkiewicz, Wojciech Pszoniak, Marek Walczewski, Anna Seniuk, Jerzy Trela, Arek Bazak, Jerzy Radziwitowicz, Jerzy Nowak, Krystyna Feldman, Jan Nowicki, Anna Polony, Dorota Pomykała, czy Marek Grechuta (który Lanckoronie poświęcił nawet jedną ze swych piosenek).
An artistic microclimate? The uniqueness of small-town architecture? The slow pace of everyday harmonious life? Picturesque landscapes? Peace and quiet? Or maybe clean air, which you can breathe deeply, enjoying your - finally successful - escape from the hustle and bustle of civilization and chaos?
Each of the above! It is a phenomenon of this place - neither a village nor a town. In Lanckorona, everyone will find something for themselves, its aura is an excellent medicine for every - even the most sensitive - soul.
The historic market square surrounded by wooden arcaded houses is one of the most beautiful complexes of old wooden construction in the country..
LLanckorona is an excellent starting point for trips to Beskid Makowski, Dróżki Kalwaryjskie, to Wadowice or to Cracow itself. As for the latter, Lanckorona is commonly referred to as the lungs of Cracow. Could there be a better recommendation? Located on a mountain slope, it has a mild climate, offering beautiful views, among others:
Are you planning a weekend getaway with your family somewhere beautiful? Come to Lanckorona - at the hospitable doorsteps of the Modrzewiówka hotel, you can breathe in clean forest air, forgetting about all your problems!
Lanckorona, as a wooden pearl of Lesser Poland Voivodeship architecture, has a lot to offer! In its center you can feel like in a living open-air museum. The hallmark is the historic wooden houses surrounding the steep, paved market square (the angle of decline is 9.5% - it's said to be the steepest square on the Amber Trail!).
The century-old arcaded houses from 1868-1872, with characteristic shingled roofs, tiny windows and wide gates with passage halls are truly unique. Tourists used to call them architectural gems. Once they were used by merchants to display goods during fairs, today they delight the eyes, and people who have a bit of imagination allow them to travel through time ... The historic market square surrounded by wooden arcaded houses is one of the most beautiful complexes of old wooden construction in the country.
For several years now, the Lanckorona market has been regularly reviving. Events such as: Easter Market, Midsummer Fair, Romantic Lanckorona or The Angel in the Little Town are organized here. You can then learn how to knead butter or make a clay pot. On these days, children in regional costumes sing songs about a wooden town, and tourists can admire the handicrafts of local artists exhibiting on the market square. Film screenings on the ruins of the castle or festivities organized by the Volunteer Fire Department make the time of residents and tourists visiting the area pleasant.
The Angel in the Little Town is especially worth recommending: a Christmas market during which local artists make images of angels from a variety of materials - ranging from dough to lace masterpieces. These days, angels take over the entire town - they walk the streets, and their beneficial power can be felt in every corner of Lanckorona.
Anyway, Lanckorona is generally an angelic town. Winged beings have many footholds here - the blue Well of Angelic Wisdom or the Well of Angelic Memories, from which it is worth drawing some water. For what? In order to never forget this tiny village somewhere in the woods among hills ...
The history of the church in Lanckorona dates back to the 14th century. In 1336, Casimir the Great founded and endowed the temple under the castle on Lanckorońska Mount. Thirty years later Lanckorona receives city rights. In the mid-16th century, the sacred building was rebuilt. The consecration of the church takes place on 29. IX. 1649.
The temple is destroyed during the Swedish deluge. The next destruction takes place as a result of arson by Muscovites during the Bar Confederation. The wooden tower, added in the 19th century, in the western part of the building, was replaced with a brick one at the end of that century. At the beginning of the 20th century, the church tower was renovated. In the following years, the construction of the fence takes place and the church is thoroughly restored.
Then, on the outer eastern wall of the chancel, the so-called Golgotha by Juliusz Słabiak. In the past century, the temple was also renovated and the roof was repaired. Thus, the present furnishings of the church come from different epochs: the late Renaissance (main altar), the Baroque (baptismal font, the image of the Baptism of Christ), Rococo (side altar).
The castle in Lanckorona is entered on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Looking at the remains of it: fragments of towers, a defensive wall, a courtyard and the foundations of a drawbridge, it is hard to imagine that one day it would be a real castle! Surrounded by a moat, equipped with a drawbridge, it consisted of a courtyard, a chapel, farm rooms and living quarters. According to the legends, it hid secret passages leading to the castle market situated at the foot of the hill. The entrance to them led through a well in the castle kitchen. Supposedly, there were also hidden passages connecting the castle with the Calvary Monastery ...
The castle was probably built in the thirteenth century, but the first written records about the stronghold come from the fourteenth century. It was built by Casimir the Great - according to the chroniclers Jan of Czarnków and Jan Długosz write. Delighted with hunting in the surrounding forests, he decided to build a castle on the top of the hill. In the following centuries, the castle often changed owners (it was owned by, among others, Jagiełło, Lanckorońscy, Olbracht Laski, three generations of Zebrzydowski, Jan Karol Czartoryski, Józef Myszkowski with his wife Helena née Czartoryski), and its walls could see a lot! Bravely guarding the border with Silesia, he reminded his subjects of the great city of Cracow located nearby.
In 1655, it was taken over by the Swedes, after which they retreated, the wooden and earth stronghold was fortified. In 1768, the castle was conquered by the Confederates of Bar, forced to leave it by the Austrian army.
In the 19th century, as a result of hostilities, the stronghold fell into complete ruin. It remains in this state to this day.
The Museum in Lanckorona was founded on the initiative of Professor Antoni Krajewski in one of the few cottages that survived the tragic fire that devastated Lanckorona in 1869. Its seat is in a corner, unique arcaded house at Rynek 133. Two parts of a wooden - obviously shingled - building are separated by a wide hallway. In the museum, you can see equipment documenting the everyday life of Lanckorona inhabitants (mainly from the beginning of the 20th century). Many of the museum's exhibits come from the excavation work carried out in the castle. Among others, tools once needed on the farm - sieves, flails, chaff cutters, reels. In the next rooms you can also see elements of the interior design of residential rooms typical of the former Lanckorona. It is also worth seeing a model of the market from before the fire and compare its appearance at that time with the present one.
Recently, local handicrafts can be purchased in the museum.
The same building houses the Bar Confederation Memorial Chamber, which perfectly documents those historic events.
Lanckorona offers many attractions for both hikers and fans of cycling trips. Places and objects of interest in terms of tourism are combined here into a cultural heritage trail marked as hiking and cycling routes. Around Lanckorońska Mountain (i.e. the castle hill near the market square), there are 5 walking routes running through the surrounding forest. The names themselves - and it must be added that they remember the beginning of the last century - stimulate the imagination and encourage walks through forest paths and backwoods. So, there is the green Avenue of Lovers, the yellow Avenue of Silent Whispers, the blue Road to the Marshes, the brown Road to the Former Quarry and the red Former Royal Route. Everyone will find something for themselves. The right level of difficulty, breathtaking views and the opportunity to immerse yourself in the wonderful - allowing you to rest - nature..
The Amber Trail passes through Lanckorona. Polish-Slovak-Hungarian ecotourism initiative leading from Budapest through Bańska Szczawnica, Cracow, to the Baltic Sea (Budapest-Cracow-Gdańsk Greenway). The international bike trail exhibits unique nooks, traditions, crafts and art of the places through which the Amber Trail once ran.
To be in Lanckorona and not to visit the place and home where the greatest Pole was born? Impossible! After all, Wadowice is at your fingertips - from Lanckorona it is just over 20 km. Here - at Kościelna Street - in 1919 the parents of the future Pope John Paul II lived. Here, on May 18, 1920, their second son was born - Karol Wojtyła - who, as a young boy, often strolled along the paths of Kalwaria and the forests of Lanckorona.
Today, the same building houses a museum that was established to commemorate the life and activity of the Polish Pope until he left his homeland and was elected bishop of Rome.
As part of the "Treasure of my life" exhibition, you can see a replica of Karol Wojtyła's apartment in the scale of 1: 1, the most valuable exhibits documenting the Pope's early years, photos (illustrating the time from childhood, through school and student years, acceptance of priestly and episcopal service, and finally the dignity of a cardinal, until the trip to the conclave in Rome), or the manuscripts of Karol Wojtyła and works published before October 16, 1978..
The John Paul II Family Home in Wadowice is a cultural institution worthy of John Paul II's greatness. It is really worth visiting it and getting to know this initial, but very important period of shaping the views of a man whose life and teachings changed the image of the contemporary world and the Church.
Kalwaria Zebrzydowska - one of the most important places of the Passion and Marian cult (it combines the worship of the suffering Christ and the Mother of God) and one of the main pilgrimage centers on the map of Poland - is located less than 3 km from Lanckorona.
The destination of all pilgrimages - that is the Sanctuary of the Fathers Bernardine - is therefore a must-see for tourists visiting Lanckorona..
The famous monastery and basilica, which impresses with its polychrome, richly decorated interior and the 17th-century miraculous painting of Our Lady of Kalwaria, are located south of the city at the top of Żar Mountain. The historic founder of the church in 1600 was Mikołaj Zebrzydowski, the voivode of Cracow. According to the legend, he made his decision after a visit, during which from the windows of the Lanckorona castle he saw three burning crosses rising to the sky above the Żar Mountain.
Important events from the Sanctuary calendar:
Holy Week - the celebration of the Mystery of the Lord's Passion
To the south and east of the monastery and the basilica there are 42 chapels and churches of the Paths of Jesus and Our Lady - known as Polish Jerusalem. All facilities are spread over an area of 6 km2. The idea behind their creation was to recreate the last path of Christ - the Way of the Cross.
The whole structure was built on the model of objects from the Holy Land, and individual places correspond to the names of places in Jerusalem (Golgotha, Zion, Mount of Olives, etc.)..
The paths of Jesus Christ are 28 stations (24 objects) arranged in a narrative sequence, telling the story of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ from the exit on Holy Thursday from the Cenacle until his death and funeral on Good Friday.
The paths of Our Lady are formed by 24 stations (11 objects) - they show the pain of Mary under the cross, the burial of Jesus and the triumph after the resurrection.
Since 1999, Kalwaria and the aforementioned complexes of chapels are on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Kalwaria Zebrzydowska with the complex of chapels of the Paths of the Passion and the Passion -Marian Sanctuary hosts about a million pilgrims every year!
An interesting and worth visiting place is the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Brody (called the Grobek) - also belonging to the complex of Paths at the Sanctuary in Kalwaria. Its history goes back to very old times - until 1611, when Mikołaj Zebrzydowski built a small chapel of the Tomb of Our Lady. It was shaped like a sarcophagus, inside which there is an altar with a figure of the Virgin Mary lying in the coffin. With time, a magnificent church was built above the chapel. Today it houses the Parish of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The temple in Brody has Baroque features and is considered to be one of the most beautiful sacred buildings in Calvary.