Gdansk Introduction Walking Tour, Gdansk

Gdansk Introduction Walking Tour (Self Guided), Gdansk

Gdansk is one of the most beautiful cities on the Baltic Sea. It's one of the main cities of the so-called Tri-cities of the Baltic shore. It is a city of magnificent old architecture and the amazing, almost fairy-tale atmosphere of the streets. There are many landmarks, such as churches, fountains and monuments. Take this tour to discover the most famous places in Gdansk.
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Gdansk Introduction Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Gdansk Introduction Walking Tour
Guide Location: Poland » Gdansk (See other walking tours in Gdansk)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 14
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.2 Km or 1.4 Miles
Author: Caroline
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Green Gate
  • Long Market Square
  • Neptune's Fountain
  • The Artus Court
  • Gdańsk Town Hall
  • Ulica Długa (Long Street)
  • Golden Gate
  • Great Armory
  • St. Mary's Church
  • Mariacka Street
  • Dlugie Pobrzeze (Long Embankment Street)
  • Brama Żuraw (Crane Gate)
  • Ulica Szeroka (Wide Street)
  • Hala Targowa (Market Hall)
1
Green Gate

1) Green Gate

The Green Gate is one of the most notable tourist attractions of the city. It is situated between Long Market and the River Motława. Together with the Golden Gate and the Highland Gate it was used to span the Long Street and Long Market, called the Royal Route.

The Green Gate is a building which is clearly inspired by the Antwerp City Hall. It was built between 1568-1571 to serve as the formal residence of the Polish monarchs. It is a masterpiece by Regnier (or Reiner van Amsterdam), the architect from Amsterdam and reflects the influence of the Flemish architecture in the city. Hans Kramer likely participated in the construction. The Nature Society, located here in the late 18th century, soon moved to the House of Naturalists (Research Society House).
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
2
Long Market Square

2) Long Market Square

The Long Market (Długi Targ) in Gdańsk, Poland, is one of the most notable and important tourist attraction of the city. It is situated between the end of Long Lane (Ulica Długa, Langgasse) and Green Gate (Brama Zielona, Koggentor). Nowadays it’s a very beautiful long square full of typical shops and restaurants which are the soul of this cosmopolitan city. It features a great number of historic houses such as Hewel House, Curicke House, Uphagen House, Ferber House, Lion Castle, Schumann House, Golden House etc. One of its most representative buildings is the Town Hall. The Neptune’s Fountain, the main symbol of the city, is also there.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
3
Neptune's Fountain

3) Neptune's Fountain

Neptune's Fountain is set in the center of Dlugi Targ, a place full of old historic buildings. This Fountain became one of Gdansk's most recognizable symbols. This statue of the God of the Sea was made from bronze in 1549. The statue was hidden during WWII and reappeared in its spot in 1954, reminding the people about the city's dependence upon the sea.
4
The Artus Court

4) The Artus Court

The Artus Court is a building in the center of Gdańsk, which used to be the meeting place of merchants and a center of social life. Today, it is a point of interest for numerous visitors and is a branch of the Gdańsk History Museum. The name was taken from the very popular Middle Ages legend of King Arthur - a symbol of chivalry and gallantry. First in England, then in other European countries, his name was given to the houses where knights and aristocrats used to meet. The interior is one big Gothic hall. Since 1531, it has been completely redecorated -- the walls have been covered with wainscot and friezes of mythological and historic character. The richly-ornamented furniture and numerous paintings add to the splendor of the hall. The most famous pictures are the works by anonymous artists from the late 15th century.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
5
Gdańsk Town Hall

5) Gdańsk Town Hall

Gdańsk Main Town Hall is one of the finest examples of the Gothic-Renaissance historic buildings in the city, built at the intersection of the Long Lane (part of the Royal Route) and Long Market, in the most popular part of Gdańsk. It is the second highest building in the Main City, after St. Mary's Church. Access to the building by car is difficult, as the Long Lane surrounding the building is pedestrianised all year around. The closest tram stop is located at Podwale Przedmiejskie.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
6
Ulica Długa (Long Street)

6) Ulica Długa (Long Street) (must see)

Ulica Długa is one of the most notable attractions in Gdansk. The street is crowded on both sides with buildings designed by famous architects. It also leads to the main attractions in the city.

In the thirteenth century, it served as a trade route, with an oval extension in the form of a market square. It was then probably the main road in Gdańsk.

After Gdańsk was occupied by the Teutonic Order , this route became the most important in the entire Main Town. From 1331 it was sometimes referred to in municipal documents as the Longa Platea . In the Middle Ages, the entire section from the then Długouliczna Gate (today the Golden Gate ) to the Koga Gate (today's Green Gate ) was considered as one street.

Długa and Długi Targ have always been part of the city inhabited by the wealthiest. Tenement houses belonged to the most distinguished patricians , merchants and people holding high offices. Due to the ceremonial parades carried out by it in the years 1457-1552, its name was derived from the Royal Route . It was here that large quarters were rented to Polish kings, and there were loud fireworks on the occasion of the royal family holidays.

The appearance of the street has changed over the centuries. In the 19th century, the porches began to disappear from it (the last one was removed in 1872). The street itself and the Market Square were paved in 1882 with cubes imported from Scandinavia (previously it was covered with field stones). Later, a tram line was run across the street . In the interwar period, it was proposed to be modernized in the spirit of cubism. Before 1945, the street was called Langgasse .
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
7
Golden Gate

7) Golden Gate

The Golden Gate in Gdańsk is one of the most notable tourist attractions of the city. It was raised in 1612–14 in place of the 13th century Gothic gate. It is located at one end of Long Lane, or Długa street, where, together with other gates, it forms a part of the old city fortifications. The architectural style of the gate is Dutch Mannerism. Both sides of the gate have attics, with figures symbolizing citizen's qualities. From the West side they represent: Peace, Freedom, Wealth and Fame. From the East side they are Agreement, Justice, Piety and Prudence. The Latin inscription on the gates reads: "In agreement small republics grow. Because of disagreement, great republics fall".

The Green Gate houses the National Museum in Gdańsk. Exhibitions, meetings, conferences and shows are held here.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
8
Great Armory

8) Great Armory

The Great Armory in Gdańsk, also known as the arsenal, is the most magnificent secular building of the mannerist architecture of Gdańsk. The meat halls in Haarlem became the inspiration for the creation.

The growing threat from Sweden at the end of the 16th century prompted Gdańsk townspeople to prepare for war. Facing the lack of warehouses for the war equipment produced in the city and its vicinity, they decided to build a special arsenal. However, the project was not limited to erecting a warehouse with a strictly utility function.

The armory was built in the years 1602 - 1605. It is the work of one of the most outstanding Gdańsk architects of that era, Antoni van Obberghen. It was built of small, red, Dutch brick decorated with sandstone decorations and rich gilding. The structure gives the impression that the building consists of four seemingly separate tenement houses.

The main facade of the building from Piwna Street is decorated with: two large rustic portals, crowned with cartouches with the coats of arms of Gdańsk, supported by lions, a statue of Minerva placed in a recess located at the height of the upper floor, stone masks
hardware ornaments, figures of Gdańsk warriors (three pikemen, a halberdist and a sagemaster), tops with moustached sphinxes and exploding grenades, on both sides of the façade there are two high octagonal towers, topped with metal cupolas with spiral staircases

The façade from the side of Targ Węglowy has slightly more modest portals and gables. They bear the figures of two musketeers, a standard bearer, constable and captain. The figure with the truncated head at its feet shows a Cossack who beheaded his commander, Jan Podkowa, a self-proclaimed Moldavian hospodar, not recognized by King Stefan Batory in the Lviv market square.

The building was burnt down during the war in 1945. It was rebuilt in 1947-1965, with the reconstruction of the towers' helmets and the stonework of the gables. In the years 2000-2005, both facades were renovated, restoring polychrome, gilding and decorative gargoyles from the side of ul. Piwna.

The interior of the Armory attracted many travelers visiting Gdańsk. The three-story building housed not only various kinds of weapons, armor and harnesses, but also paintings and statues. In addition, the collected items were displayed in a way that attracted the attention of visitors, e.g. armor was displayed on mannequins placed on puppets pretending to be steeds. These mannequins were movable, which increased the interest of viewers.

The armory can be compared to today's museums of military art, with the proviso that in the 17th century Gdańsk, it was considered that it would be necessary to use the possessed collections in practice.

The Academy of Fine Arts is located on the upper floors. The basement area is 1528 m. The ground floor of the building, was occupied by a shopping arcade. Since December 8, 2015, the Art Armory, an exhibition space of the Academy of Fine Arts, has been operating on the ground floor, hosting temporary exhibitions of contemporary art. The space is divided into the main exhibition room where large exhibition projects are held, the "Design" Gallery, where exhibitions on design, design, utility forms and graphics are presented, and the "Kultura Ma Many Faces" gallery dedicated to the presentation of minor art projects. Catering activities are conducted in the remaining areas of the ground floor.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
9
St. Mary's Church

9) St. Mary's Church (must see)

St. Mary's Church or, properly, Basilica of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, is a Roman Catholic church, which is the largest brick church in the world. It was begun in 1379 and is considered to be one of the largest European brick Gothic buildings, which include castles. From 1577 until 1945, when it was named the Marienkirche, it was the biggest Evangelical Lutheran church in the world. It is 105.5 m long, and the nave is 66 m wide. Inside the church is room for 25,000 people.

St. Mary's Church is a triple-aisled hall basilica with a triple-aisled transept. Both the transept and the main nave are of similar width and height, which is a good example of late Gothic style. Certain irregularities in the form of the northern arm of the transept are remnants of the previous church situated on the very same spot. The vaulting is a true piece of art, and was in great part restored after the war. Main aisle, transept and presbytery are covered by net vaults, while the side aisles are covered by crystal vaults.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
10
Mariacka Street

10) Mariacka Street (must see)

Mariacka Street is a street that has preserved the old world atmosphere of the city. It is the most beautiful street in Gdansk and attracts many tourists because of its special architecture. There are several shops and boutiques along this street, and they are a definite must-see. The shops here sell mainly antique and jewelery made of the famous petrified resin of the Baltic Sea amber.
11
Dlugie Pobrzeze (Long Embankment Street)

11) Dlugie Pobrzeze (Long Embankment Street) (must see)

Dlugie Pobrzeze is an approximately 480-meter-long street along the Motława (Motlawa) River. It was the quay of the old port of Gdańsk. Since the 19th century it has served as a waterfront promenade and jetty for excursion traffic.

In the Middle Ages, in front of each of the Gdańsk Water Gates there was a bridge, that is, a pier on stilts. Their names Brotbänkenbrücke, Frauenbrücke, Heiliggeistbrücke were derived from the names of the gates. Depending on the type of ships that were unloaded there, they had different widths and heights.

However, Dlugie Pobrzeze, documented in 1385 as "pons longus" ( Latin ) , stretched along the granaries on the opposite bank. The pier from the Koggentor (later the Green Gate) to the Brotbänkentor was called the Small Bridge around 1400. Over the years, the piers have been lengthened, connected and adjusted in height. Since 1592, the bridge along the city wall on the water side of the main town has been known as the Dlugie Pobrzeze. Around 1611 this was extended to the Great Crane (Krantor) and later extended first to the Johannistor and then to the Häkertor. The section between the crane and the Heilig-Geist-Tor was called Weinbrücke until 1809 .

Until 1861, the Dlugie Pobrzeze was continued over the area of ​​the fish market. At the beginning of the 20th century, reinforced concrete replaced the wooden structure. The first jetty for passenger shipping was built in 1840 at the Johannistor. The steamships went to the New Harbor, the Kurinsel Westerplatte , the ports along the Bay of Danzig : Sopot , Hela , Heisternest and Kahlberg , and to Heubude and Bohnsack on the Vistula .

In March 1945, the buildings along the Dlugie Pobrzeze were almost completely destroyed. During reconstruction work north of the crane gate was rebuilt in a modern style since 1958. The water gates were reconstructed according to medieval models. In the years 1965-1967, the facility received new walls below the waterline, and by 1973 a new, lowered quay was built from the Green Gate to the crane gate as a berth for passenger ships. The pedestrian zone was laid out with granite slabs until 1979 and designed as a promenade.

In the years 1983 to 1988 the buildings on the bank front between Frauentor and Krantor were completed . The model was the view from around 1900. They house cafés, restaurants and shops. The Hanza Hotel was built in 1999 north of the crane gate. The modern buildings of the "Skład Colonial" that disturbed the overall picture were demolished again. In its place, the new building of the Maritime Cultural Center (Ośrodek Kultury Morskiej) has been attached to the crane since 2012.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
12
Brama Żuraw (Crane Gate)

12) Brama Żuraw (Crane Gate) (must see)

The Crane Gate or Brama Żuraw is a prominent sight of Gdansk. It's a medieval crane set on the waterfront of Gdansk. This medieval wonder dates back to the 14th century. It received cargo off ships for many decades and was built from wood, but rebuilt after the Great World War.
13
Ulica Szeroka (Wide Street)

13) Ulica Szeroka (Wide Street)

Ulica Szeroka (Wide Street) crosses the entire width of the district, starting at the banks of the Motława River , over which it leads through the Crane Gate, and ending at Targ Drzewny (the Old Market).

It was the main street of the Main Town. There used to be two streets. Until the 19th century , at the west end of the present day, the street was called Am Breiten Tor (Przy Szerokiej Gate) . The name comes from the now defunct Brama Szeroka which closes the street from the west.

From the east, at the Crane Gate, it ends at the so-called The Wine Market, a former place of wine trade. Until the end of World War II , tram rails ran across the street , ending at Żurawia (two-way trams ran from Nowy Port). The buildings on the street were badly damaged during the war and reconstructed after 1945. In 2018, it was planned to restore the paved surface of the street.

From 1956 at the intersection with ul. There is a Tourist Milk Bar on Węglarska Street , considered a cult one and mentioned by the British Guardian as a place where you can familiarize yourself with the traditional Polish menu.

Important sights located on Ulica Szeroka are the Tower of the Wide Gate; the Crane Gate, the Szeroka Street square with a fountain from 1966 (by Gdańsk sculptor Alfons Łosowski) and a monument to Świętopełek II the Great.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.
14
Hala Targowa (Market Hall)

14) Hala Targowa (Market Hall)

Hala Targowa, or Market Hall, is the historic city hall in the main square in Gdansk. The Dominican Monastery was on this site many years ago. It was destroyed, and in 1894 it was decided to build a market hall at the same location. You can find different authentic Polish products, like food, clothes, and handcrafted objects at this market. St. Nicholas' remains from the twelfth century were recently discovered here. These artifacts are now exhibited in the lower part of the hall.

Walking Tours in Gdansk, Poland

Create Your Own Walk in Gdansk

Create Your Own Walk in Gdansk

Creating your own self-guided walk in Gdansk is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Gdansk's Historical Churches Tour

Gdansk's Historical Churches Tour

Gdansk has a long history of Catholicism, hence the many impressive churches found in the city. In Gdansk you will see some of the most spectacular medieval religious buildings, such as St. Mary's Church, St. Nicolas Church, and other churches that distinguish themselves as part of the urban landscape. Take this self-guided walking tour to discover the historic churches of Gdansk.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.6 Km or 1 Miles
Solidarity Walking Tour

Solidarity Walking Tour

"Solidarity" was born in August 1980 and was the beginning of the end of the communist regime.

The representatives of the striking workers from many Polish factories and firms formed the Inter-Factory Striking Committee led by Lech Wałęsa who became later the president of Poland. ****PH***

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.8 Km or 0.5 Miles