Royal Castle in Warsaw
Royal Castle – the pride of Warsaw completely rebuilt after its destruction during World War 2. As a part of the Warsaw Old Town, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was here that the Consitution of May 3rd was adopted in 1971. It was the first modern consitution in Europe and the second in the world (after the United States)!
The castle was built in the 14th century. Until 1526 it was the residence of the dukes of Masovia, then it became the royal property. It was in the 16th century that the castle became the seat of the Polish parliament. After King Sigismund III Vasa moved his residence to Warsaw in 1596, the castle became the official seat of the king and the court. At that time it was rebuilt in the early baroque style. In the 1830s, the castle was rebuilt again, this time in the neoclassical style. In the years 1926-1939, the building was the seat of the Polish presidents.
During the Siege of Warsaw in September 1939, the castle was bombed and burned. During the German occupation, it was looted by the Nazis. In 1944, the remaining parts of the castle were blown up, only the Kubicki Arcades and a fragment of the Royal Library survived. The first attempt to reconstruct the castle was made by the government shortly after the war, in 1949. However, it was not abandoned due to lack of funds. The project was resumed at the beginning of the 70-ties and was completed in 1984, when the castle was finally opened to tourists.
What can I see inside the castle?
Inside the castle you can see the magnificent royal chambers. One of the most precious treasures of the building is the collection of the paintings by Rembrandt and Canaletto. The artworks of the latter present Warsaw from the 18th century and were used to reconstruct the capital after World War 2. In the castle chambers you can also see the original manuscript of the first modern constitution in Europe.
Please mind the entrance to the castle is paid.