Silesia for children – TOP 10 attractions
When a trip to the seaside or to the lake is out of the question because of bad weather, choose another destination for your family. Consider going on an urban, family trip. There’s a region on the map of Poland which offers an abundance of attractions but is still undiscovered: Upper Silesia with its capital Katowice.
Katowice is often associated with industry and with its famous UFO-shaped entertainment and sports venue, Spodek. But what many people don’t know is that this post-industrial metropolis is the third greenest city in Poland, offering an extensive cultural and entertainment program for families with children.
So what’s there to see? Where can you take the kids when it’s raining outside? Here is a short guide featuring the most interesting attractions for our youngest ones. We assure there’s something there for the grown-ups too.
STAY | VIENNA HOUSE EASY KATOWICE
1. SILESIAN PARK (Chorzów)
Silesian Park is one of the largest municipal parks in Europe. The site includes many attractions, such as the Legendia Amusement Park. Legendia features more than 40 attractions, divided into 5 thematic zones. No one will leave the park bored. The entertainment selection is vast: from trampoline jumping, through a so-called “Circus Train” showcasing the secrets of the circus world, to the Mirror Room. Next, staying in the Park, make sure to visit the largest and oldest planetarium in Poland, built to commemorate Nicolaus Copernicus and his accomplishments. The building’s cupola, 23 meters high, features a miniature of the horizon, used to visualize planets, galaxies and other celestial objects. The Planetarium offers regular events, presentations, lectures and lessons in geography and astronomy, and… electronic music concerts. Animal lovers should visit the Silesian Zoo. The youngest visitors will surely appreciate the Mini Zoo, where they can pet the animals, or Dinosaur Valley, showcasing natural-size dinosaur figures.
2. ATENEUM, THE SILESIAN PUPPET AND ACTORS’ THEATER
The Ateneum Silesian Puppet and Actors’ Theatre is one of the oldest puppetry theatres in Poland. The program offers both fabulous classics as well as contemporary items for children and adults. An excellent cast, unique musical accompaniment used in the shows and the application of various techniques and styles make each visit to the theatre an unforgettable treat.
3. THE ŚLONSKI GODKI TRAIL
The Katowice Ślonski Godki Trail is marked by the figures of important cultural protagonists from Silesia, such as Utopec, Skarbnik or Strziga. A walk down the trail is an excellent way to visit the city – the children can look for the fairy tale characters while the parents marvel at the architecture of the city 🙂 A map of the trail is available at the Tourist Information Centre. The trail was created to promote the Silesian dialect and the region’s fabulous history.
4. SILESIAN PHILHARMONIC (Katowice)
Classical music soothes and is excellent for the youngest ears. Staying in Katowice, make sure to browse through the repertoire of the Silesian Philharmonic, which is famous for its most prestigious annual Grzegorz Fitelberg International Conductor Competition. Each artistic season, the program is packed with 200 concerts and nearly 1000 music broadcasts for children. Children can be music buffs too! 🙂
5. SILESIAN MUSEUM (Katowice)
With its characteristic architecture, the main building of the Silesian Museum reflects on the industrial history of the region. But its greater part is situated underground. The Silesian Museum remembers our youngest ones. The “In Search of Tomek” permanent exhibition is geared towards children. The exhibition tells the story of Tomek Wilmowski, the youngest protagonist of Alfred Szklarski’s novels. Children embark on a journey to find Tomek and visit all of the places the author wrote about. It’s a great game for both the children and their parents, who can recall their earliest fascinations.
6. TRAMPOLINE PARK – JUMPCITI (Katowice)
All active leisure fans must visit the JUMPCITI trampoline park where anyone can challenge gravity on 3,000 m2. JUMPCITI offers, among other attractions, a gladiator zone, a sponge pool, a dodgeball field, as well as airtrack and acrobatic tracks.
7. THE GUIDO MINE AND KRÓLOWA LUIZA MINE IN ZABRZE
All adventure hunters should visit the former Guido Mine with two underground tunnels open for sightseeing: 170 m and 320 m below the surface. Visitors are brought down by a real mine lift (the szola), and the minutes-long descent into complete darkness is bound to impress even the bravest of them. Visiting the lower corridor, the adventure-seekers travel in suspended monorail cars. What is noteworthy is that this monorail train is the oldest mine railway system in the world which has been opened for tourists.
To visit the Guido mine, your children will have to be at least six years old. With younger children, choose the Królowa Luiza drift. This family route offers an amazing adventure for children who will meet the Treasurer (Skarbnik) – the guardian of miners. They will also have the opportunity to see and hear real coal mining machines and learn about the miners’ work thanks to multimedia projections. In the end, they will also ride the authentic Karlic train. The above-ground part of the mine features the amazing entertainment and educational Park12C with a unique playground.
8. THE UPPER SILESIAN ETHNOGRAPHIC PARK
This open-air ethnographic museum situated within the premises of the Silesian Park is a must-see for all history and regional architecture enthusiasts. The examples of folk architecture presented in the Park include, among other things, the 18th-century Saint Józef Robotnik of Nieboczów Church. To accommodate the youngest ones, the Park organizes special museum lessons, presenting the traditions and customs of Silesian culture. All classes are conducted in the form of workshops, leaving no one bored. Children can learn the techniques used to ornament the typical Silesian costumes, create felt decorations, or play the small ethnographer.
For those looking for more alternative tourist attractions, the Katowice mural trail or the Katowice NON-MAP are the perfect choices. Plus, visiting Silesia, go to the city’s interesting boutiques with independent, local fashion brands (for more, go HERE), and try out local specialities on the culinary trail. Katowice is a city that’s definitely worth seeing!