Main Attractions in Katowice

Like most Polish cities, Katowice's Rynek, or town square is also the old center and marketplace of the city, although it's not really that old. The old classic Rynek was demolished during the country's communist rule and it its place stands a communist designed square, which most people consider to be unattractive. There are plans to demolish the communist structures and re-construct the old town square. Today, most of the streets around the Rynek have been pleasantly pedestrianized and are considered prime shopping localities.

When taking a walk through the city, you must visit the ethnographic Kosciuszko Park, which dates back to before the war. It houses a wooden church complex of St. Michael Archangel, which was moved from Syrynia in 1938. If you're keen to see a luxurious neo-Renaissance residence, pay a visit to the area around Plac Wolnosci. The exact origins of the building and details of its architect are ambiguous but the building itself was owned by a saw-mill magnate.

If architecture interests you then, you'll enjoy the modernistic Wyspianski Silesian Theatre, which was designed by the renowned C. Moritz of Cologne, one of the best known theater architects of the 19th century. Although the interiors of the building were recently renovated, it has retained its high artistic value. A landmark of the city, a visit to Spodek, one of Plan's premiere concert venues, and the show and sports hall of Katowice, is a must. Built in 1972, its distinctive saucer-like, almost 'UFOish' architecture displays avant-garde structure and form. Today it has modern gym halls, an ice-rink, restaurants and even a hotel.

Katowice was an active participant in the three Silesian Uprisings of 1919, 1920 and 1921. In a tribute to the Silesian Insurgents, a monument, designed by G. Zemla and W. Zablocki, was erected in 1967, and given to Katowice by Warsaw. It can be seen at Rondo, the large square in the city.

There are also several Art Nouveau style buildings in Katowice which are well worth look, although the suburbs abound with the now considered unsightly communist style
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