A drive into the Mountains…

Polanica-Zdrój was todays destination, 55miles south-west of Wroclaw, Kłodzko County – Lower Silesian Voivodeship. Our friend, Martyna is currently on an athletics camp training for the upcoming nationals, her parents who also have friends near by to Polanica kindly offered to take us there for the day so we could spend time with Martyna before we head back to England on Tuesday morning.

The drive towards Polanica brought us many green views of the polish countryside, passing many old monasteries and churches. Along our route we were welcomed by small, under developed villages divided by the presence of large modern sugar factories, some of those surrounding old cathedral towns or castles with visible barbicans remaining. Arriving into the Polish mountains the roads and hills they cut through started to be covered with old snowfall, the air felt much colder than within the city  and the countryside surrounding us began to fill with trees. Polanica-Zdrój is one of Poland’s many Sanatoriums (destination spa), a resort centred on a spa, such as a mineral spa. Historically many such spas were developed at the location of natural hot springs or mineral springs. Typically over a three-week stay, such facilities provide a comprehensive program that includes spa services, physical fitness activities, wellness education, healthy cuisine, and special interest programming.

“The forest is said to be a great ally of medicinal waters, which together with them promotes the healing process. Large forest resources in and around the resort offer the best guarantee of solid and efficient sources. Therapeutic effects of staying in the forest can be clearly seen when people need rest, worked and neurotic . ” – Bedeker Polanicki, Z. Franczukowski.

With a ski resort feel to the town, it is clear its population and picturesque landscaping has been created in order to maximise the health tourism that funnels through over the whole year. In the centre of the resort housed in a grand summer-house like building is a well of ‘Medicinal Water’.The water is obtained from a bore hole made in 1904, drawn from a depth well of 269m. Its qualitative and quantitative composition is very stable – from age, it retains consistently high form. The depth of this borehole suggests that the water from this source can be said without exaggeration that it comes from the heart of the earth. The slow path the water  travels through to reach such heights, has left its mark on it – hence such a wealth of minerals, stimulating effect, perfect clarity and exquisite taste. The unique nature of this source has been confirmed by scientists who agree that this unique type of water occurs only in the Kłodzko Valley of which Polanica is located.

From trying the water first hand, it has an almost vinegary fizzy taste to it that generally makes you react in a squished face way. It feels heavy on the tongue and after two cups it left a distinctive after taste lingering around my mouth. Overall the water tastes disgusting but the supposed health benefits out weigh the need to worry of taste, as this water is used for a number of treatments that are listed on the board in the photo below:

After a dinner which felt like I had eaten twice my body weight, Salmon Fillet burger with fries (probably the most greasy and unhealthy meal I’ve eaten in the past week) we headed back towards Martyna’s training camp where her parents, who had been spending time with a friend close by, were due to pick us up to drive back to Wroclaw. Having time away from the city centre out in the mountain air was a pleasent experience but I was pleased to be on our way back to the vibrant colourful streets of Wroclaw, where the streets had already became so familiar. Although only my second time within Poland and this city, it has quickly became one of my favourite destinations to bask in local history and culture with adpotive friends via Filip. Wroclaw is a place to be explored and experienced. With only one more day left of this adventure I am no where near finished with this city, not as a tourist but progressivly as a part of me.

 

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