The colorful street of umbrellas in a Polish town delights tourists. But that’s not the greatest treasure of this place

The colorful street of umbrellas in a Polish town delights tourists.  But that's not the greatest treasure of this place

Street of umbrellas, magic street, colorful street – this is how this place is described. Umbrellas have become the hallmark of Połczyn-Zdrój, but the real sensation of this street is hidden under the feet of passers-by.

– We hang them every year, because it is such a positive accent that evokes good associations – says Jacek Brzozowski, secretary of the Połczyn-Zdrój commune. For every tourist or spa visitor (because Połczyn-Zdrój is a health resort) it is a place of obligatory photo as a souvenir of the trip. – But umbrellas are not our only attraction – points out Brzozowski.

Colorful umbrellas and a treasure underground

Umbrellas appear on the promenade on Grunwaldzka Street in Połczyn-Zdrój as soon as it gets warm and hang throughout the season. This custom was initiated almost ten years ago by the then director of the local Cultural Centre. Each year, the commune makes a different pattern out of them. It always consists of over half a thousand umbrellas.

But being here, it’s worth not only lifting your head up. The Połczyński promenade is one of the main historical trade routes – the Salt Route. It is situated almost perfectly on the north-south axis. As Jacek Brzozowski says, the real treasure is hidden under the paved surface of the promenade. During earthworks in 1997, a layer of round wooden beams arranged parallel across the street was found at a depth of approx. 1.5 m. This is an old surface from the 13th-14th centuries. This was the route used by merchants carrying salt from Kołobrzeg saltworks to the south.

What is worth seeing in Połczyn-Zdrój?

Połczyn-Zdrój is the oldest Polish health resort. It is famous for its mineral waters and healing mud and brine baths. Today, the commune also promotes itself with the tourist brand of Połczyn Switzerland. Under this name there is a unique microregion stretching over the area of ​​several neighboring communes. The real pearl of the Połczyn Switzerland is the nature reserve of the Five Lakes Valley. Połczyn-Zdrój and its surroundings are also a paradise for cyclists. The Połczyn-Zdrój – Złocieniec bicycle path is a showcase of this region. Riding it, you can admire the most beautiful landscapes of the Połczyn Switzerland.

But when it comes to Połczyn-Zdrój, there is something else that cannot be omitted. – We are famous for the element of longevity – reveals Jacek Brzozowski. He explains that a record number of centenarians live here. According to the data provided on the commune’s website, in March 2019, 113 centenarians were counted, and if 90-year-olds are also taken into account, there were as many as 143 people. For comparison, in most other communes of the Zachodniopomorskie Voivodship, there are usually 20-30 people in this age group. – Połczyn is really unique in this respect! Due to the scale, we did not conduct nationwide research, but I guess that we can be unique also in the country. Just look at the map and you can see right away that our area is one of the cleanest, emphasized Mayor Sebastian Witek, quoted on the commune’s website.

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