If you are planning on being in Katowice you had better brush up on your Polish linguistic skills or your pantomime dexterity, as it will only be the young bodies that will understand you speaking English. This is where you can get stuck into traditional dishes such as cabbage rolls, meat broth and sour rye or tripe soup with some "bigos" to follow - aka hunter's stew of chopped various meats stewed with sauerkraut and shredded cabbage.
The capital and largest city of Silesian Voivodeship, Katowice is a large urban center sitting on the banks of the Rawa River. Its historical importance is firmly in the realms of the fact that is has been the industrial hub for decades. Regarded as a depressing grey city, it is gradually putting on the shiny new face of a vibrant cultural and business center. You will now find the Silesian Philharmonic calling the city home and there is a Silesian Museum to meander around. The crowning glory belongs to the famous flying saucer-shaped concert hall, the Spodek.
The architectural buffs will be intrigued with the secessionist architecture from the early 1900s contrasted with the modern architecture of today. You can get to the magical Beskid Mountains easily from the city and wallow under flowering lilac trees in a purple haze every April that festoon the streets. Despite having a history dating back to 1397, there aren't many sights to attract tourists apart from a plethora of museums of one kind or another.
But as always, you will find divine intervention to be had at one of the many cathedrals or churches dotted around.
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