Bringing People to Poland

Europe PolandThis year is a very exciting one for Poland. Within a few weeks of this publication, and on the heels of the Jewish Culture Festival held in June in Krakow, the same city will celebrate World Youth Day, beginning on July 25, 2016. Every three years, the Catholic Church organizes this pilgrimage for young people of the Catholic faith. The event is expected to bring 2 million people from around the world to Krakow, including Pope John Paul II who will begin his visit at Wawel Royal Castle. His schedule includes stops at religious and historic sites within the region, and there will be events and gatherings of young participants at parks and arenas throughout the city. The celebration will culminate with closing ceremonies on July 31.

Culture in Wroclaw
Poland is also drawing visitors and worldwide attention with the city of Wroclaw’s designation as a 2016 Capital of Culture. Wroclaw, the largest city in western Poland became part of Poland after border changes following World War II. Newly relocated citizens brought their cultures from many regions, which brought the city new life after all of the destruction caused by the war. Today’s residents feel that it’s time to show the world the city’s amalgamation of past and present, and are using the city’s designation as a Capital of Culture to do just that. Enjoying the title of European Capital of Culture can be an opportunity for a city to generate cultural, social and economic benefits, and raise its visibility and profile on an international scale. Wroclaw hopes to use this honorable designation to make the city and the surrounding region more recognizable.
In addition to designation as a Capital of Culture, Wroclaw is also a 2016 World book Capital. The World Book Capital is a title bestowed by UNESCO to a city in recognition of the quality of its programs to promote books and reading, and the dedication of those in the book industry. The selection committee singled out Wroclaw “in light of the strong assets of its program in terms of quality and variety” and in particular, “for its special focus on grass-root community involvement, as well as promotion of publishing, bookselling industries and libraries at regional and international levels.” The intent of this award is to foster and promote reading.

Healthy Poland
Travelers are also making their way to Poland for health reasons. The country’s spas and wellness centers have enjoyed a long history as a tourism draw. Poland’s geography offers natural hot springs, salt caves, mineral-rich mud and a clean atmosphere. There are over 40 health resorts, many on the Baltic coast, which offer a wide range of treatments, including climatotherapy, balneotherapy, thalassotherapy, and much more.
Increasingly, international tourists are arriving to take advantage of not only the spas, but medical services being offered in Poland. Dentistry and plastic surgery are among the most popular services offered by the country’s medical tourism industry. With cutting edge medical facilities, doctors provide medical services for a fraction of the cost in other countries. Cosmetic procedures in Poland are approximately 40 to 80 percent cheaper, and treatments like rehabilitation and bariatric care are up to six times more affordable than in the USA and Canada. A growing number of tourists are arriving in Poland to enjoy physical healing and relaxation at the wide variety of medical and treatment facilities located throughout the country.

Looking Ahead
Poland’s tourism numbers continue to increase year over year and it is not difficult to see why with all that the country has to offer its visitors. Developments for the near future include the country’s first Polish Vodka museum scheduled to open in Warsaw’s Praga North district in 2017. The world-famous Bochnia salt mine in southern Poland has recently announced it will establish a nature trail for tourists.
This is a country is full of culture, history, innovation and celebration.

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