W dolinach największych łódzkich rzek:
Bzury, Pilicy i Warty

The project “In the valleys of the largest rivers of the Łódź region: Bzura, Pilica, and Warta” is carried out under the honorary patronage of
Marshal of the Łódź Voivodeship, Mr. Grzegorz Schreiber.

The project is co-financed by the Regional Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management in Łódź.

The Polish Foundation of Stage Artists “Plac Teatralny” in co-production with the Documentary Film Studio in Łódź has started the production of an eight-episode nature and landscape series titled “In the Valleys of the Largest Rivers in Łódź: Bzura, Pilica and Warta”. The production is under the honorary patronage of the Marshal of the Łódź Voivodeship, Mr. Grzegorz Schreiber. The production is financed by a grant from the Regional Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management and the Marshal’s Office in Łódź. The series will be broadcast on TVP 3 Łódź in both national and regional time slots, as well as on TVP Polonia and Telewizja TOYA. We will follow the waterways of the largest rivers in Łódź, talking about their nature, landscape and tourist attractions. The creator, director, and screenwriter of the series is Tomasz Świątkowski, the cinematographer is Jacek Knopp, the sound is handled by Artur Frątczak and Piotr Kolos, respectively. Computer graphics were made by Kamil Szafraniec, the sound design was done by Piotr Kubiak, and the series was edited by Paweł Makowski and Łukasz Dębski. The host of the series is Kaja Sosnowska, known to TV audiences from the show “Szpital”, and the actor Filip Frątczak from the Tadeusz Łomnicki New Theatre in Poznań. Filip Frątczak is also the producer of the series and the President of the Board of the “Plac Teatralny” Foundation. The first four episodes will be devoted to the Bzura Valley. We will visit Łagiewniki in Łódź, where the Bzura river begins. We will present the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, the Tum of Podłęcze with its beautiful Romanesque collegiate church and open-air museum. Further down the Bzura, we will visit Piątek, the geographic center of Poland, the “Strong Mud” nature area, the Horse Stud Farm and Palace in Walewice, and Sobotka, the birthplace of Artur Zawisza Czarny. We will also take a kayaking trip down the Bzura from Strugiennice to Łowicz, where we will show viewers around the most beautiful monuments of this primate city, including the cathedral, national museum, and many more. Our next destinations on the journey through the valleys of the Łódź rivers will be Arkadia Park, Nieborów Palace, the Automotive Museum in Nieborów, and the Bolimów Landscape Park, a historic site of a battle where chemical weapons were first used during World War I. Subsequently, we will move with the film crew to the Pilica and Warta rivers.

Valley of Bzura River

Łódź - at the source of the Bzura River

We are starting our journey through the valleys of the three largest rivers in the Lodz Voivodeship: the Bzura, Pilica, and Warta. The first river we will explore is the Bzura, whose sources are located in the city of Lodz, in the Łagiewnicki Forest, near the center of one of the largest Polish cities. The Bzura valley has been an important waterway for centuries, so there are many interesting places to visit. We will visit the most interesting ones with our camera. At the beginning, we went to a clinic for wild animals, and then Kaja learned about the difficult job of a municipal police officer from the mounted unit.

Collegiate Church in Tum

Today our team is at the Collegiate Church in Tum near Łęczyca. Father Piotr Nowak, the parish priest, told us about the secrets and architecture of one of the most beautiful Romanesque churches in Poland. In the second episode of our series, you will see photos of the church filmed by a drone, showing the beauty of Romanesque architecture. You will have to wait for the series to be broadcast on TVP 3 (national and regional antenna), TVP Polonia, and the TOYA television station in Łódź.

Piątek and open-air museum in Tum

A short visit to the open-air museum in Tum near Łęczyca for some photo adjustments. We were caught in a storm on the first day, so today we finished the missing shots. Here you can see some of the oldest human settlements in Polish territories, dating back about 100,000 years (Grodzisko), as well as beautiful traditional houses. The biggest attraction of the open-air museum is a windmill that can be moved depending on the wind direction. You can see all of this by watching the series “In the valleys of the three largest rivers of the Łódź region: Bzura, Pilica and Warta”.

Walewice

Another day of filming was spent at the State Horse Stud in Walewice. After the Walewski Palace, Joanna Rudak showed Kaja around the salons and shared stories about the palace’s secrets. We even got to enter the Napoleon Bonaparte suite.

Sobota

As befits, after Friday comes Saturday. Both towns are located close to each other on the banks of the Bzura river. In Sobota, the hero of the November Uprising, Artur Zawisza Czarny, was born, but this town is not only proud of this hero. Currently a village, but once a city, it belonged to the Sobocki family, whose most prominent representative was Tomasz Sobocki of the Doliwa coat of arms, the chancellor of King Sigismund the Old and the envoy of the Republic to the Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent.

Silne Błota

After our visit to the open-air museum in Tum, our film crew moved to the Natura 2000 area called “Silne Błota” in the Piątek municipality. We were guided through the “Silne Błota” area by Mr. Janusz Witkowski, a forester from the Grotniki Forest District.

Photo by Piotr Kolos.

Mill in Strugienice

Our film crew arrived to shoot footage at the old mill in Strugiennice. The mill belonged to the Świderski family and during its operation, it was one of the largest mills of its kind in the Mazovia region. Unfortunately, today it awaits better times. The new owner is planning how to bring it back to work. From Strugiennice, together with Kamil Sobol and Piotr Kosiorek, we started kayaking towards Łowicz.

Open-air museum in Małrzyce

On our way to Łowicz, we couldn’t miss one of the most beautiful  thnographic parks in Poland. If you want to see its beauty, you have to watch the third episode of our series or come here like us on the way to Łowicz.

Łowicz

Łowicz is one of the most magnificent Polish cities despite its small population, it has an extraordinary history. Its name first appears in a papal bull of Innocent II from 1136. The pope confirmed the ownership of the Łowicz lands to the Archbishops of Gniezno. The dispute with the Mazovian Dukes Siemowit III and his son Siemowit IV over the ownership of the city lasted for a long time, but after the incorporation of Mazovia into the Crown, it ceased forever. Under the protection of the Polish Primates, Łowicz became one of the most important cities of the First Polish Republic. Few people know that from 1572, during the period of interregnum in Poland, Łowicz was the capital of our country.

The most important monuments of the city are: the Łowicz Cathedral, the largest necropolis in Mazovia, where 12 Polish Primates are buried. The first branch of the Krakow University operated here. Bishop Wojciech Jastrzębiec granted the parish church the title of a collegiate church in 1433, and a secondary school was established there, called the Colony of the Krakow Academy. The Baroque Piarist Church, where in 1753, thanks to the efforts of Father Stanisław Konarski, a reform of education was adopted, first for the Piarists and then approved by Pope Benedict XIV, which led to the establishment of the Commission of National Education during the Four-Year Sejm. Also, a new instruction for schools to be organized in the country was adopted at this monastic chapter. The National Museum in Łowicz with its Baroque Chapel, which is a pearl among the monuments of Łowicz. The greatest artists of the era created in Łowicz: Jan Mikołaj of Urzędów, Michał Anioł Palloni, Bogusław Zug, Mikołaj Zieleński, Tylman van Gameren. In Łowicz, performances were given by Wojciech Bogusławski. In addition to high art, which Łowicz is proud of, it is also known for its beautiful folk costumes.

Arkadia

Today morning, the film crew was in the Arkadia park. The sentimental-romantic park was founded here by Helena from Przeździecki Radziwiłłowa. Below is a link with some information about Arkadia. After the Arkadian solitude of Helena, we were guided by Ms. Agnieszka Chmielewska from the National Museum in Nieborów.

photo by Piotr Kolos.

Puszcza Bolimowska

We went straight from Arkadia to the Bolimów Forest. To the Rawka Reserve, a tributary of the Bzura, which is one of the most beautiful places in our region. Mrs. Kinga Nowak from the Bolimów Landscape Park, which is a branch of the Landscape Parks of the Łódź Voivodeship, showed us around this picturesque forest. We would like to thank our friend Tomasz Duda who helped us bring Mrs. Kinga to the film set. By the way, we are opening the mushroom season, we found our first cep today in the forest!

Photo by Piotr Kolos.

Nieborów - museums

Kaja rode a scooter from Bolimów to Nieborów, which was rented for the shoot from Eco-Way company in Warsaw. To make the photos more interesting, we mounted a GO PRO camera on the scooter. When the film crew arrived at the Radziwiłł Palace, time stood still. This is one of the most beautiful palace and park complexes in Poland. Nieborów is also home to the Museum of Automotive Industry, founded and owned by Mr. Wojciech Bury.

photo by Piotr Kolos

photo by Krzysztof Belczyński

The First World War in Bolimów

Translation: Yesterday the film crew was shooting another episode of the “In the Valleys of the Largest Rivers in the Łódź Region: Bzura, Pilica and Warta” series near Bolimów. The section we were filming is called “The Bolimów War.” This place is a battlefield where chemical weapons were used for the first time in the history of wars. The tragic episode of the First World War unfolded right here. Our guide through the Bolimów battlefield was Mr. Piotr Moskwa, and we thank him for the interesting story and for adding an original World War I uniform to the series.

Photo by Piotr Kolos.

Valley of the Pilica River

Pukarzów, Trzy Morgi, Przedbórz

Today we went to where the Pilica River enters the Łódź Voivodeship at the Pukarzów dam. First, we visited the St. Peter chapel, which was meant to protect fishermen, anglers, and travelers sailing on the Pilica. Then, we kayaked down the Pilica to Przedbórz, and later went to the village of Trzy Morgi to walk on the Monkey Bridge.

The name of the city of Przedbórz probably comes from the topography of the area and indicates the natural properties of the terrain on which the settlement was founded. The place was located in front of forests, on the border with the steep forests of the Świętokrzyska and Nadpilicka forests.

Many years earlier, King Casimir the Great often visited Przedbórz. Due to the abundance of game in the surrounding forests, he came here for hunting. Casimir the Great is particularly significant to Przedbórz, as he expanded the local stronghold into a castle and in 1370 granted the town municipal rights. Władysław Jagiełło also visited Przedbórz, and it was here in 1423, which is important for all Łódź residents, that he granted town rights to the village of Lodzia, now Łódź. That’s an interesting fact.

In the village of Trzy Morgi, we have a unique attraction waiting for us… The so-called Monkey Bridge… Built by local residents, it allows for crossing to the other side of the Pilica. The nearest road crossings over the Pilica are about 20 km away from this place.

photo by Piotr Kolos

Zeleźnica, Czarna Rózga, Piskorzeniec

In the further part of our journey through the Pilica valley, we reached Żeleźnica. This place is associated with a legend about the death of King Casimir the Great. We then went on to admire the beauty of the Pilica region’s nature: eutrophic forests in the Czarna Rózga reserve, and the peat bogs of the Piskorzeniec reserve.

Chapels along the Pilica River

Yesterday we visited the Pilica river and its surrounding areas, including the small chapels located along the riverbank. These chapels are an important part of the local culture and tradition, and serve as a place for contemplation and prayer for both locals and visitors. Many of them were built in the 18th and 19th centuries, and are dedicated to various saints, such as Saint Roch or Saint John of Nepomuk. They are often adorned with beautiful frescoes or sculptures, and offer a peaceful and serene atmosphere for those who visit them. It was a truly magical experience to see these little gems nestled in the picturesque landscape of the Pilica valley.
The Nadpilicze region is known for its many roadside chapels. Most of them have been revitalized as part of the “All Saints’ Landscape” project. One of the most beautiful is the 1608 chapel in Przygłów nad Luciążą. If you want to see for yourself, come here and take a look. Some of them we will show you in the series we are filming.

Sulejow - Cistercian Abbey

The Sulejów Abbey is one of the most magnificent monuments in the Pilica Valley. Its construction began in 1137. Kazimierz the Just was on a hunt when he lost his way during a storm. Seeking solace in prayer, he heard a voice saying, “Build a temple here, and you will find your way back to your friends.” Having made a promise, twelve lions showed him the way back. These and other interesting facts can be found in the episode of our series dedicated to the Sulejów Abbey.

Sulejowski Reservoir

One of the most beautiful photos in our series come from the area of the Sulejowski Reservoir. This reservoir, created by a dam on the Pilica River in the town of Smardzewice, covers an area of 27 square kilometers. The Sulejowski Reservoir is the main source of drinking water for the city of Łódź. If you don’t believe that Polish landscapes can resemble those of the Amazon, watch the fifth episode of our series “In the Valleys of the Biggest Rivers of Łódź: Bzura, Pilica and Warta”. The bird habitats here are exceptionally valuable and interesting. Another advantage of the reservoir is that you can relax under the sails in such beautiful natural surroundings. We invite you to come to Sulejów and explore Łódź!

Tomaszów Mazowiecki - Open Air Museum of the Pilica River

Skansen Rzeki Pilicy is the only such facility in Poland. Its collection includes a charming building of the Wolbórka railway station, where supposedly Władysław Reymont himself had been, a water mill moved from the Pilica river, and a building of the toilet used by Tsar Alexander II. In the section dedicated to the war trophies of Pilica from both World War I and II, you can see cannons and vehicles excavated from the bottom of the Pilica river. The most valuable exhibit is the only surviving and functional armored artillery tractor of the Luftwaffe in the world. Another interesting exhibit is a flat-bottomed barge of the “Szczupak” type.

Tomaszów Mazowiecki - Blue Springs

The most significant feature of the Blue Springs Reserve are the karst springs, from which crystal clear water flows through cracks in the limestone rocks, raising the bottom sand with great force, creating the impression of “boiling geysers”. Drainage channels create a basin that reaches a depth of up to 4.5 meters. The “Niebieskie Źródła” nature reserve is located on the right bank of the Pilica River, within the administrative boundaries of Tomaszów Mazowiecki. You can find more interesting facts about this place in the link.

Tomaszów Mazowiecki -The Nagórzyce Caves

The Nagórzyckie Caves are a remnant of an old underground mine for glassmaking sand, which was extracted here since the end of the 18th century. The deposit of this snow-white raw material was formed about one hundred million years ago during the Cretaceous period. According to geologists, the sea bed emerged in this area, and the sands that make up the deposit were transported here from the present-day Świętokrzyskie Mountains.

Niebowo

Skansen Niebowo was created out of passion and a desire to return to childhood years. It is located in the village of Wincetów, between Opoczno and Tomaszów Mazowiecki. The official opening of the open-air museum took place on October 6, 2007. The whitewashed cottage, covered with thatch, is built in the typical style of the Opoczno region. In addition to the cottage, there is a cellar – an earth pit, a stone barn and shed, and a brick barn that has been converted into the owners’ living quarters. The rooms in the cottage contain equipment characteristic of the Opoczno region, such as cupboards, beds, looms, churns, pottery, furniture, and fabrics. In the kitchen, you can see an authentic bread oven connected to a smokehouse and bakehouse. Furthermore, the facility contains exhibits related to agriculture, carpentry, and weaving, mainly wooden plows, harrows, cultivators, winnowers, axes, sickles.

Spała

Spała and the forests of Spała have been attracting hunters for centuries. Polish kings, Russian czars, and even the Chief of State Józef Piłsudski used to hunt here. The hunting traditions continue to this day with the famous Hubertus hunts. Around Spała, we can find many mementos of its hunting past. Nowadays, Spała is mainly known for the Central Sports Center, where our champions prepare for important competitions.

Inowłódz

Inowłódz is the last stop on our journey through the Pilica Valley. It used to be a town but today it’s a rural municipality. In the interwar period, it was a popular summer resort. Julian Tuwim, who often mentioned Inowłódz in his work, used to visit here frequently in his childhood. The most interesting monument in Inowłódz is the church of St. Idzi from 1048. It was built as a thanksgiving offering for the birth of Bolesław Krzywousty by Władysław Herman. In Inowłódz, there are also ruins of a defensive castle built by Casimir the Great. You can only experience the atmosphere of this charming town by taking a trip to Inowłódz as part of your Pilica Valley adventure.

Valley of the Warta RIver

Trębaczew - Cementownia Warta - Wapienniki

Our journey through the Warta Valley begins not by chance in Trębaczew, where the largest cement plant in the region, Cementownia Warta, is located. The wealth of this region is limestone, which is extracted and processed here into cement and lime. These works are still carried out using traditional methods, but to learn about them, you must watch the seventh episode of our series “In the valleys of the largest rivers in Łódź: Bzura, Pilica and Warta.”

Quarry Lisowice Wschód

Before we set off on the trail of the limestone miners, first let’s find out how this region’s natural wealth – limestone – was formed. To see how organic rocks settled on the sea floor, we will take our camera to the Lisowice Wschód quarry.

Lime kiln Węże

Lime kiln Węże is a family-owned company run by Marian and Mirosław Wcisło, who cherish the traditions of the lime industry in the Działoszyńska region. The kiln they operate has been in use since 1957, and interestingly, there used to be two other similar units operating alongside it. The maximum production capacity of the kiln is 5,000 tons of finished product per year. Seeing a lime kiln in operation in modern times is a true rarity!

Nature reserve "Węże" - karst caves.

The “Węże” nature reserve is a system of ten karst caves located on the Zelce Mountain. One of them is named after Professor Jan Samsonowicz, who extracted a breccia containing rhinoceros bones from it.

Mountain of Saint Genevieve

Góra św. Genowefy is a rocky outcrop located near the banks of the Warta river. Some people say that it resembles a human skull. Legend has it that the soul of the unfaithful wife of a local lord from Parzymiechy wanders here. Some also claim that witches’ Sabbaths are held here.

Great Loop of the Warta

The Great Loop of the Warta River, also known as the Załęczański Loop of the Warta River, is a stretch of the river measuring around 40 km between Działoszyn and Krzeczów. The Warta River, which previously flowed to the northwest, turns west in Działoszyn, then turns sharply east after Załęcze, and after a few kilometers, it turns north. This area has been designated a protected natural area in the form of the Załęczański Landscape Park. The Great Loop of the Warta River is a region of exceptional beauty and is popular among kayaking enthusiasts. It has an excellent tourist infrastructure, with the heart of it being the Nadwarciański Stronghold.

Nadwarciański Gród

The ZHP Training and Recreation Center “Nadwarciański Gród” is located in the Załęczański Landscape Park, on the right bank of the Warta River. Since 1997, the center has been operating a Field Base for Ecological Education called “Green School”. Despite the center’s focus on ecological education for children and youth, it also welcomes adults to its hospitable premises. Here you will find peace and quiet as well as many tourist and scenic attractions. Nadwarciański Gród can serve as an excellent base for field trips in the Załęczański Landscape Park.

Fountain of Revelation

Three kilometers from Nadwarciański Gród there is a Spring of Revelation, which has an extraordinary history. The water from this spring has healing power, and the spring itself is called the Polish Lourdes. This water has often helped in hopeless situations. Apart from everything else, it has a wonderful taste, so local farmers come for it, but also people from all over Poland.

Church in Łaszewo

The wooden church in Łaszewo was built in the Wieluń style, which is characterized by a log wall structure of the nave and presbytery, and a narrower and polygonal-shaped wall of the chancel. Inside the church there is a renovated ceiling with a Renaissance polychrome from the mid-16th century. The main baroque altar houses a Gothic Pietà from around 1430.

Princely Tumuli

Near the village of Przywóz there are the Princely Tumuli originating from the Przeworsk culture. Archaeological research has confirmed their creation in the 2nd and 3rd centuries. Excavations have revealed a rich interior of the tombs.

Konopnica

Konopnica is a village located on the Warta river, which is associated with the name of the great Polish poet, Maria Konopnicka, as Konopnica belonged to the estate of her husband Jarosław. We can assume that Maria Konopnicka often visited these areas. In Konopnica, you can see the Church of St. Roch and the manor house of the Kozarski family. However, the most interesting object to visit is located half a kilometer south of the village center, and it is called the “Grodzisko” or “Fortification Hill”. The defensive stronghold in this place functioned from the 12th to the 16th century and was one of the largest in Poland.

Strońsko

Strońsko is a small village located in the Zduńskowolski district. One of the oldest monuments in the Łódź Voivodeship is located here, the church of St. Ursula and the Thousand Virgins. This Romanesque temple dates back to the first half of the 13th century. While passing through Strońsko, we came across a medieval event called “In the Fortress of Mściwój – Strońsko on the Time Axis,” which emphasizes the medieval history of this place. We had a great time, and along with the organizers, we invite you to a historical picnic next year.

Jeziorsko Reservoir

Jeziorsko is the largest water reservoir in the Łódź Voivodeship. The waters of the Warta River are dammed in Łyszkowice, spreading over an area of 42.3 square kilometers, creating one of the largest bird habitats in Poland. Approximately 250 species of birds have been observed here, nesting permanently or stopping during their migrations. At the same time, there may be tens of thousands of birds in the “Jeziorsko” ornithological reserve. While walking through the Warta Valley, we came across an ornithological camp organized by the Faculty of Biology and Environmental Protection at the University of Łódź.

Siedlątków

The parish of St. Mark in Siedlątków is a unique parish in several respects. Firstly, it is the smallest parish in Poland, with only 125 faithful. Secondly, it is one of the few, if not the only, church standing in a depression. The building is located below the water level of the Jeziorsko reservoir and surrounded by a dike. During the construction of “Jeziorsko,” the church was dismantled and planned to be moved, but the good Lord had mercy on “the smallest parish in the world and its surroundings” and left it untouched.

Uniejów

In recent years, Uniejów has “made a great tourist career”. The Uniejów thermal baths are known throughout Poland and are the only spa with warm thermal waters. But Uniejów also has a wonderful history and monuments. The most important is the castle of the Archbishops of Gniezno and the Gothic collegiate church dedicated to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Uniejów is the last stop on our journey through the valleys of the largest rivers in the Łódź region. After work comes relaxation, so the last hours of our stay in Uniejów were spent in the thermal pools. 🙂 See you “In the valleys of the largest Łódź rivers: Bzura, Pilica and Warta”.