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Nicolaus Copernicus was one of the most eminent scholars of all time and he was born right here in Poland. He came into the world on February 19, 1473 in the city of Torun.

The astronomer and mathematician was the first European scientist to propose that Earth and the other planets revolve around  the Sun - the heliocentric theory of the solar system.

Copernicus studied at the University of Krakow reading liberal arts including astronomy and astrology before heading to Italy to study medicine and law. He was one clever boy!

His presence can still be felt in Torun and as we approach the 550th anniversary of his birth, there are some great attractions visitors can experience to learn more about one of Poland’s most famous sons and his place among the most outstanding scientists in history.

The street where Nicolaus Copernicus was thought to be born now houses a fascinating museum dedicated to him. The Nicolaus Copernicus House is a proud reminder of his life and legacy which should be top of the list of things to see in Torun. Today, visitors can enjoy a multimedia, interactive exhibition which includes an audio guide, films about astronomy, the universe and scientific discoveries. The exhibition also offers an insight into the medieval city of Torun itself.

In addition to celebrating all things Copernicus, Torun is sure to appeal to many curious visitors. Must-see attractions are The Planetarium Hall, The Centre of Modern Times, The House of Legends, The Gingerbread Walk of Fame and The ZooBotanical Garden. Plus, in keeping with the astronomy theme, the Cosmopolis Fountain is not to be missed. In the summer months, visitors can enjoy spectacular programmed performances combining water, light and sound.

Another highlight of Torun and definitely worth visiting is the leaning tower. Bet you thought it was only Pisa in Italy that had one of these! Well, we have our very own here in Torun.

According to local legend, it was built by a Teutonic Knight as a penance for his sins.

His crime? It is said that, against monastic rules, he fell in love with the daughter of a wealthy merchant. Consequently, he broke his vow of chastity. As a symbol of his sin and deviation from the Order’s strict rules, he was instructed to build the tilted tower. The point to all this? Well, those who visit are putting their morals to the test. Apparently if you are righteous and faithful, you will never fall over but anyone whose sins are graver than that of the poor Tuetonic Knight will never keep their balance. Will you dare to test the theory?

Visitors to Torun can also explore the ruins of the Teutonic Order Castle.

After all that history and tragedy, it’s now time to introduce the sweeter side to Torun…

Torun is also famous for its delicious gingerbread. The oldest known recipe originates from a medical book and visitors can find out all there is about Torun gingerbread at the city’s two dedicated museums.

The Museum of Torun Gingerbread and The Living Museum of Gingerbread offer visitors the chance to bake their own!  This simple yet sublime treat is another important ingredient in the city’s colourful heritage.

Furthermore, the historical city of Torun is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and now one of the most cultural destinations in Poland - ideal for visitors who have exhausted the other great Polish cities. For anyone looking for a fresh, new experience in the country, it’s time to put Torun on the wishlist for 2023. Don’t just take our word for it, come and feel the magic of Torun for yourself.

How to get there?

The nearest airport to Torun is Bydgoszcz.

Flights to Poland from the UK are regularly available from airports across the UK with easyJet,  Ryanair and Wizz Air.



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Our address

Polish National Tourist Office
980 N. Michigan Ave, Ste. 1550
Chicago, IL 60611
Phone: 1 (551) 344-3057
e-mail: info.na@poland.travel