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Bydgoszcz ( , ) is a city currently located in northern Polandmarker, on the Brdamarker and Vistula rivers, with a population of 360,142 (June 2008), agglomeration more than 400 000, which makes it the 8th biggest city in Polandmarker. It has been the co-capital with Toruńmarker of the Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodeshipmarker since 1999, and was previously the capital of the Bydgoszcz Voivodeship (1947-1998) and before that, of the Pomeranian Voivodeshipmarker (1945-1947). Since 1999 it is also the seat of Bydgoszcz Countymarker.

Bydgoszcz is part of the metroplex Bydgoszcz-Toruń with Toruń, only 45 km away, and over 850,000 inhabitants. Bydgoszcz is the seat of Casimir the Great Universitymarker, University of Technology and Life Sciences and a conservatory as well as a Collegium Medicum of Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń. Bydgoszcz has a famous Concert Hall (Filharmonia Pomorska), opera house Opera Nova,From the Bydgoszcz Ignacy Jan Paderewski Airportmarker there are flights to Warsawmarker, London, Dublinmarker, Liverpoolmarker, Berlinmarker, Krakowmarker, Viennamarker, Copenhagenmarker, Birminghammarker and Düsseldorf-Weeze as well charter flights to Antalyamarker, Cretemarker and Tunismarker. Thanks to its location between Vistula and Odra water system on the Bydgoszcz channel, the city is an important link in a water system connected via Noteć, Warta, Odra, Elbe with the Rhine and Rotterdam.


Originally a fishing settlement called Bydgozcya ("Bydgostia" in Latin), the city became a stronghold for the Vistula trade routes. In the 13th century it was the site of a castellany, first mentioned in 1238. The city was occupied by the Teutonic Knights in 1331, and incorporated into the monastic state of the Teutonic Knights. The city was relinquished by the Knights in 1343 with their signing of the Treaty of Kaliscz along with Dobryznia and the remainder of Kuyavia.

King Casimir III of Poland, granted Bydgoszcz city rights (charter) on April 19, 1346. The city increasingly saw an influx of Jews after that date. In the 15th-16th centuries Bydgoszcz was a significant site for wheat trading. The Treaty of Bydgoszcz signed between King John Casimar II of Poland and Elector Frederich William II of Brandenburg-Prussia in the city in 1657, announcing a military alliance between Poland and Prussia against Sweden.

Bydgoszcz followed the history of Greater Poland until 1772, when it was annexed by the Kingdom of Prussiamarker in the First Partition of Poland and incorporated into the Netze District as Brombergmarker and, later, West Prussia. During this time, a canal was built from Bromberg to Nakłomarker which connected the north-flowing Vistula River via the Brda to the west-flowing Noteć, which in turn flowed to the Oder via the Warta.

In 1807, after the defeat of Prussia by Napoleon, and the signing of the Treaty of Tilsit, Bromberg became part of the Duchy of Warsawmarker. In 1815 it returned to Prussian rule as part of the autonomous Grand Duchy of Poznańmarker (the Province of Posenmarker after 1848) and the capital of the Bromberg regionmarker. After 1871 the city was part of the German Empiremarker. After World War I and the Great Poland Uprising, Bromberg was assigned to Poland in 1919. In 1938 it was made part of the Pomeranian Voivodeship.

From 1939-45 during World War II, Bydgoszcz was retaken by Nazi Germany, in the Invasion of Poland and annexed to the Reichsgau Wartheland. On September 3, 1939, shortly after the war started, the Bromberg Bloody Sunday incident occurred in which numerous Germans and Poles were killed; the incident was used by Nazi propaganda for retaliation against Poles after Bromberg was occupied by the Wehrmacht on September 9. The city's Jewish citizens were repressed, as thousands of people were sent to concentration camps and/or executed. Bromberg was the site of Bromberg-Ost, a female subcamp of Stutthofmarker. The subcamp was staffed by several female SSmarker guards (Aufseherin) and was commanded by the Oberaufseherin Johanna Wisotzki and a male commandant. A deportation camp was situated in Smukała village, now part of Bydgoszcz. According to Nowa encyklopedia powszechna PWN, 37,000 citizens of the city died during the war.

In 1945 Bromberg was overrun by the Soviet army. After the Yalta Agreement, it was assigned to Poland, which later became a soviet satellite in the Warsaw Pact.

In March 1981 Solidarity's activists were violently suppressed in Bydgoszcz.


  • Diagram of city population since 1600

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DateFormat = yyyyPeriod = from:0 till:390000ScaleMajor = unit:year increment:50000 start:0 gridcolor:linegreyScaleMinor = unit:year increment:10000 start:0 gridcolor:linegrey2PlotData =
 color:cobar width:19 align:left
 bar:1600 from:0 till:2000
 bar:1772 from:0 till:700
 bar:1806 from:0 till:4100
 bar:1849 from:0 till:10263
 bar:1875 from:0 till:31300
 bar:1910 from:0 till:57700
 bar:1921 from:0 till:89282
 bar:1925 from:0 till:104000
 bar:1939 from:0 till:141000
 bar:1946 from:0 till:134614
 bar:1955 from:0 till:202044
 bar:1965 from:0 till:256582
 bar:1975 from:0 till:322657
 bar:1985 from:0 till:366424
 bar:1998 color:cobar2 from:0 till:386855
 bar:2007 from:0 till:361222
 textcolor:black fontsize:S
 bar:1600 at: 2000 text: 2 000 shift:(-11,5)
 bar:1772 at: 700 text: 700 shift:(-8,5)
 bar:1806 at: 4100 text: 4 100 shift:(-11,5)
 bar:1849 at: 10263 text: 10 263 shift:(-14,5)
 bar:1875 at: 31300 text: 31 300 shift:(-14,5)
 bar:1910 at: 57700 text: 57 700 shift:(-14,5)
 bar:1921 at: 89282 text: 89 282 shift:(-14,5)
 bar:1925 at: 104000 text: 104 000 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:1939 at: 141000 text: 141 000 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:1946 at: 134614 text: 134 614 shift:(-14,5)
 bar:1955 at: 202044 text: 202 044 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:1965 at: 256582 text: 256 582 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:1975 at: 322657 text: 322 657 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:1985 at: 366424 text: 366 424 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:1998 at: 386855 text: 386 855 shift:(-17,5)
 bar:2007 at: 361222 text: 361 222 shift:(-17,5)


Przechodzący przez rzekę (Crossing the River)
Definitely one of the most beautiful buildings, and undoubtedly the oldest building, in the city is the Church of St Martin and Nicolaus, commonly known as Fara Church. It is a three-aisle late Gothic church erected between 1466 and 1502. The church boasts a late-Gothic painting entitled Madonna with a Rose, or the Holy Virgin of Beautiful Love, from the 16th century. The colourful 20th-century polychrome is also worth noticing.

The Church of the Assumption of the Holy Virgin, commonly referred to as "The Church of St Calres," is a famous landmark of the city. It is a small, Gothic-Renaissance (including Neo-Renaissance additions), one-aisle church built between 1582 – 1602. The interior of the temple is rather austere since the church has been stripped of most his furnishings. Not a surprising fact when taking into account that in the 19th century the Prussian authorities dissolved the Order of St Clare and turned the church into a warehouse, among others. Nonetheless, the temple is worth visiting and examining. The original wooden polychrome ceiling from the 17th century draws the attention of every visitor.

Wyspa Młyńska (the Mill Island) is among the most spectacular and atmospheric places in Bydgoszcz. What makes it unique is the location in the very heart of the city centre, just a few steps from the old market square. It had been the 'industrial' centre of Bydgoszcz in the Middle Ages and throughout the next few hundreds years of its existence. It was there that the famous royal mint operated for many years in the 17th century. The buildings which can still be seen on the island come from the 19th century. However, the so-called Biały Spichlerz (the White Granary) remembers the end of the 18th century. But it is the water, footbridges, red-brick edifices of historical tenement houses reflected in rivers, and the greenery, including old chesnut trees, that create the atmosphere of the Island.


Historic grain elevators at the Brda river bank.

Major corporations





Bydgoszcz is one of the biggest railroad junctions in Poland, with two important lines crossing there - the east-west connection from Toruńmarker to Pilamarker and the north-south line from Inowrocławmarker to Gdańskmarker (see: Polish Coal Trunk-Line). There are also secondary-importance lines stemming from the city, to Szubinmarker and to Chełmżamarker.

Among rail stations located in the city, there are:
  • Bydgoszcz Główna - main railway station
  • Bydgoszcz Leśna
  • Bydgoszcz Wschód
  • Bydgoszcz Zachód
  • Bydgoszcz Łęgnowo
  • Bydgoszcz Bielawy
  • Bydgoszcz Osowa Góra
  • Bydgoszcz Fordon

Buses and Trams

  • PKS Bydgoszcz - operates inter-city and international bus routes.
  • Local buses and trams are operated by ZDMiKP Bydgoszcz.



  • Muzeum Okręgowe im. Leona Wyczółkowskiego (Leon Wyczółkowski District Museum) is a municipally-owned museum. Apart from a large collection of Leon Wyczółkowski's works, it houses permanent as well as temporary exhibitions of art.
It occupies several buildings:- Main building (Gdańska 4 St.)- The White Granary (Mennica St.)

Classical music

  • Filharmonia Pomorska im. Ignacego Paderewskiego (Ignacy Paderewski's Concert Hall) - thanks to superbly designed acoustic qualities of the main concert hall, it is one of the best classical music concert halls in Europe.

Popular music

  • Concerts of popular music in Bydgoszcz are usually held in Filharmonia Pomorska, Łuczniczkamarker, Zawisza and Polonia stadiums as well as open plains of Myslecinek's Rozopole on the outskirts of the city.
  • Alternative music festival "Low Fi" [11358],
  • Smooth Festival Złote Przeboje Bydgoszcz
  • Eska Music Festival Bydgoszcz
  • Hity na Czasie Festival Bydgoszcz


Opera Nova at the bank of the Brda river.
  • Teatr Polski im. Hieronima Konieczki (Hieronim Konieczka's Polish Theatre) - despite its name, theatre offers a wide variety of shows both of national and foreign origin. It also regularly plays hosts to a large number of touring shows. Once a year, in autumn, "Festiwal Prapremier" is organized: the most renowned Polish theatres stage their latest premieres.
  • Opera Nova (The Nova Opera)


Sports clubs

The Club was A Team Polish Champion in the following years: 1938, 1966, 1967, 1970 and for the successive sixteen years: 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008.

Sports facilities

The sport, show and fair arena Łuczniczka.

Sports events


Bydgoszcz constituency

Members of Polish Sejm 2007-2011 elected from Bydgoszcz constituency:

Members of Polish Senate 2007-2011 elected from Bydgoszcz constituency:


It is also said that Pan Twardowski spent some time in the city of Bydgoszcz, where, in his memory, a figure was recently mounted in a window of a tenement, overseeing the Old Town. At 1:13 p.m. and 9:13 p.m. the window opens and Pan Twardowski appears, to the accompaniment of weird music and devilish laughter. He takes a bow, waves his hand, and then disappears. This little show gathers crowds of amused spectators.

People born in Bydgoszcz

Hotel Pod Orłem (Beneath the Eagle).

International Relations

Twin towns and Sister cities

Bydgoszcz Twin Cities sign on the Theatre Square
Bydgoszcz is twinned with:

Friendship relations

Bydgoszcz also maintains friendship relations with these cities:


File:Bydgoszcz Mostowa noc.jpg|View of Brda riverFile:Bydgoszcz kamienica Pl Wolności.jpg|Wolnosci (Freedom) SquareFile:Bydgoszcz katedra wnętrze.jpg|Cathedral of St. Nicholas and Martin (circa 1466), interiorFile:Bydgoszcz Plac Solny impreza.jpg|Solny Square with the Bobola ChurchFile:Bydgoszcz - Bazylika.jpg|Vincent de Paul Basilica, begun in 1924File:Bydgoszcz kosciol Bernardynow.jpg|Bernardine Church, 1552-1557File:Kolegium jezuickie w Bydg.jpg|City House (former Jesuit college)File:Bydgoszcz Kościół NSPJ front.jpg|Church of the Holy Heart of Jesus

See also


  1. City of Bydgoszcz Municipal website
  2. Local Government Association: Twin Town Search

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