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Located on the island Wolin, Międzyzdroje (the name means: between healthy baths) is one of the most beautiful and elegant Polish sea Baltic resort. Its beauty comes from the beach located down the picturesque cliff, whose highest point – Kawcza Mountain – rises to a height of 61 m above sea level. The big attraction of the city is June Festival of Stars (film and theater) that leave a trace in the form of their palm prints on the Promenade of Stars.
The huge advantage of this spa is the presence of a big national park, and therefore it makes a perfect way to combine a holiday on nature, away from the city hustle and bustle with a typical holiday resort entertainment. (For this reason, the author of this text chooses Międzyzdroje for relax by the sea.)
A bit of history
Until the mid-19th century Międzyzdroje was a poor fishing village. The first bathing establishments on the beach were built in the 30th of the 19th century and at the turn of the 19th / 20th century the village became the fashionable resort with a promenade, spa park, hotels, villas and wooden pier. Many of them survived (some in rather bad condition however), but at the moment there are much more newly built, more luxurious hotels. The old wooden pier was replaced in 2004 with a concrete one of a length of 395 m.
Thanks to EU funds Międzyzdroje looks much much better now. The centre nearby the pier has been rebuilt, enriched with many of lawns, fountains and benches.
The beach and Wolin National Park
The beach extends across the entire width of the spa, but the most interesting part – for those who do not like beach monotony – is located in the eastern part of the city. As you move away from the built-up area and approach the Wolin National Park, the coastline turns into a steep cliff covered with trees. Its highest point, Kawcza Mountain, has a height of 61 m what makes an excellent vantage point. It is possible to get there both from the beach, climbing on a steep and a narrow stairs, and from the city, walking on a beautiful avenue in the park of beeches and pines. The beach becomes very narrow at some places, but those who like peace and don’t mind a walk, can find a perfect quiet far away from the noisy and crowded bathing and fish restaurants. Beautiful and varied coastline of the Wolin National Park is an ideal place for hiking or… as you can see, also a biking! You can go there by hours to easily find a nice place to rest on a number of tree trunks, washed away from the hill by the sea waves. Unhappily a considerable damage was caused there by a powerful storm, which took place in autumn 2013.
Wolin National Park is the only one sea park in Poland. Founded in 1960, it took its name from the largest Polish island Wolin. Covers an area of 10937 hectares. Cliff and well-preserved beech forests are its greatest attraction, as well as a bison farm, situated at a distance of 1.2 km from the city.
In the picture: a bison farm at Wolin National Park.
Promenade of Stars
Exclusive, full of hotels and restaurants, part of the city starts from the eastern side with a big, white luxury hotel “Amber”.
Every year in June Polish movie and theater stars stay there during Festival of Stars. Their presence is commemorated by palm prints on the sidewalk of the Promenade of Stars, as well as statues of prominent actors.
Centre and pier
Between “Amber” and the pier is the hotel-restaurant-entertainment center of the spa. Thanks to EU funding it has been recently rebuilt and made nicer, with fountains, flowery discounts, benches and lawns.
The big change for better is removing from the streets a noisy entertainment places, making the city much quieter (the same relates to the beach, free from a loud music). Another positive change is reducing to a minimum the number of stalls – so typical for Polish spa! – selling kitsch souvenirs and toys. But vacationers have access to a lot of venues – cafes, restaurants and bars.
The biggest attraction of the center is the pier, the longest concrete pier in Poland with a small harbor at the end for sea cruisers offering trip to nearby Świnoujście city or just a sea cruise.
Unfortunately, the beauty of the pier is spoiled a bit by too many gastronomical points. To get to the pier from the city people have to cross the passage with shops, cafés and restaurants, which if necessary (as we have experienced one day) can serve as a shelter from the rain!
Hotels and restaurants
The choice of hotels and pensions in Międzyzdroje is very rich. Many stylish, pre-war villas have survived and most of them are located in a quiet western part of the spa. But as it is a very attractive place many new elegant ones have been built there recently.
Lovers of fish dishes will find in Międzyzdroje a lot of eateries serving fish.
Although the resort does not have a typical fishing harbor, two stationed directly on the beach boats provide daily delivery of fresh fish that you can eat at the restaurants on the beach or in the area, but this is less elegant surroundings.
Zalesie – Poligon V-3
From many attractions, mostly natural, we chose Zalesie, where are remains of a rocket launcher V-3. Shells of these weapons, flying at a speed of 1 500 m / s with a range of 165 km, were to be directed to London. The leftovers in Zalesie are very modest, but a small museum housed in a bunker down the hill presents a detailed history of the weapon.
See also: On the Baltic
Photo: Renata Głuszek, Wikipedia, fotopolska.eu