Description and history of Torun Poland

The wealthy Hanseatic port. Torun retains much of its old charm and character in its narrow streets, churches, vaulted cellars and museums. Torun joined the Hanseatic League around 1280 and quickly developed handling much of the trade in Poland's goods and crops rafted down the Vistula River towards Gdansk. In the 14th century Torun rivaled Gdansk as an important trading center of the Baltic Sea and Central Europe. In the mid-14th century Torun numbered ten thousand inhabitants and was one of the largest agglomerations in medieval Europe. Throughout the history the town experienced different periods when it belonged to mentioned Hanseanic League, Teutonic Knights, Polish, Prussians and Polish again.

The war did relatively little damage and today the Old Town picturesquely situated on the banks of the Vistula River retains its medieval street plan. Torun bears the best witness to the city's past glory. They include the Old Town and New Torun Market Squares, The Old Town Hall, St. John's Church with chapels and star-like vaulting, St.James Church, and the whole urban layout of the town's center which dates to the 14th century. Throughout the history Torun attracted painters, wood-carvers and artists making splendid stained glass panels that remains to be seen today. There are several fine buildings lining the Old Town. The most richly decorated is the house at # 35 known as a House under the Star. The best representative of Torun's rich scientific life was Nicolaus Copernicus who only spends his young life here, the city is very proud of the man who " stopped the sun and moved the earth ". Torun was also included on the UNESCO World's Heritage list. Torun has been partially restored and the extensive restoration is still taking place.