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Ciechanowskie atrakcje

It’s a well known fact that locals usually have an entirely different view on monuments and other tourist attractions than actual tourists. However appealing the history of the local castle might be, it remains interesting only for a time being. After all, how many times can you hear about the remarkability of a castle you see everyday through the car window while on your way to work without going mad? Who else than 15th century art enthusiasts are the paintings on a church wall going to attract?

That’s the thing with Ciechanowian attractions — all of them (or, at least, a great lot of them) directed towards tourists, which is pretty weird since not a lot of them come to the town. The residents on the other hand, especially the young ones, don’t all think of places of interest as well as the vacationers do.

The castle of Masovian dukes

The castle of Masovian dukes is one of the attractions Ciechanow is most recognized for. It was built at the turn of the 14th and 15th century. At first it performed defensive functions — its main purpose was to resist the Teutonic Order’s and the Lithuanians’ attacks and to provide a safe hiding space for the local people. In the next years its purpose changed a few times; there were also a couple major alterations to strengthen its defensive mechanisms. However after Masovia was incorporated into the Crown in the 16th century it lost its relevance. It was already basically a tuin when during the Swedish deluge it was occupied by the enemy and burned down with the rest of the town.

The reconstruction of the castle started in the 1960s. As of now, it looks different than it used to, probably because of the lack of drawings portraying the medieval and renaissance version of the castle… and the glazed ferroconcrete pavilion in the former residential building’s place, which is where the museum is based.

A visit to the castle of Masovian dukes can be a pretty pleasant experience. The expositions are entertaining. Sometimes there are occasional events being held in between the walls and on the meadows surrounding the castle. The truth is, however, that every single citizen has been there at least two times in their life: once on a school trip and the second time on some festival. After some time of living near it, the castle turns from a magnificent 14th-century fortress and a cool museum into a boring old ruin.

It’s one of those places you visit once in your lifetime and don’t feel any hunger for more when you leave. It’s the reason why so many people get irritated by praising the castle so much. Everyone’s been there. Everyone’s experienced it. Everyone knows that comparing it to the Wawel is a blatant overstatement.

The water tower

The water tower is the second thing Ciechanow is most recognized for. It isn’t, in fact, a water tower, but an expansion tank of an unusual shape of a torus placed atop a one-sheet hyperboloid… which is basically a tire on top of an hourglass. It was built in 1976 from the project of Jerzy Michal Boguslawski and, interestingly, hasn’t ever been filled with water.

The tower has been standing, abandoned, since the 1980s. Though there have been a lot of plans regarding the opening of an observation deck at the very top or a restaurant inside the construction, none of them was ever realized. The revitalization didn’t happen until 2017, when the Torus Science Park was created in the buildings surrounding the tower.

Similarly to the castle of Masovian dukes, the water tower is a good place to visit on a school trip, but not so much on any other occasion. The workshops that are held there are mostly directed towards children, which results in the older visitors’ boredness. The prices of the food served in their Cafe Pitagoras aren’t desirable by any means, as well.

The Museum of Masovian Nobility

Personally, I see the expositional building of the Museum of Masovian Nobility everyday, usually around or before four p.m. Every single time it’s just as dead and solitary as it was the day before. It’s actually quite strange considering the amount of praise for its many successes the local press seems to have for the museum.

The Museum of Masovian Nobility is divided into three major objects: the expositional building, the castle of Masovian dukes and the Museum of Positivism in Golotczyzna that’s based, as the name suggests, outside of town. The expositional building is right next to the Kosciuszko Square, which is a pretty lively place. The next part is about it specifically, mainly because I have the most to say about it in particular.

The Museum is quite small. Though some expositions are time-limited, it’s best to assume they’ve already been exposed to the visitors before. The offer doesn’t change, so every time you visit the museum you can count on some spectacular déjà vu. Teenagers as a whole don’t go to museums much, but I personally know a fair number of people who don’t visit this particular Ciechanowian museum not because they’re not interested in the exhibitions, but because the exhibitions are not interesting.

If not there, then where?

Young citizens of Ciechanów aren’t very picky. Though they have a habit of complaining and laughing at almost everything, they don’t need much to spend time fairly well. They like to go to Krubin or to the MMG Centers shopping centre (“Marcredo”) just outside of town. It’s always fun to go bowling at City Park or have a simple meal with their friends at the local McDonald’s.

A good attraction — a facilitation, really — are the city bikes. There’s not a place without teenagers that are using them to get to a meeting with their friends or just recreationally cycling about the parks. It’s a superior way of transport to public buses, for sure, especially in this pandemic situation we’re currently in.

The official tourist attractions may not be very appealing to the younger citizens of Ciechanow, but they make do with what they have. It doesn’t change the fact that it would be great if some other places to relax and have a fun time came to be in the town. Maybe even some places that would be interesting to the youth that’s tired of hearing praises about attractions directed to the tourist that almost never arrive.

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Ktoś niespełna rozumu (czyt. urzędnik z Brukseli) wykombinował, że skoro on jest durny, to inni ludzie też, i muszę każdego odwiedzającego poinformować, że każda przeglądarka używa ciasteczek, a jeśli zostawisz swój email w formularzu komentarza, to strona go zapisze. Ależ to niebywałe. Normalnie szok...

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