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Szlak samochodowy: Ludowe zabawki, kremówki, Mistrz Twardowski i miasto aniołów!

Car trail: folk toys, kremówki, Master Twardowski and the City of Angels!

Duży plac dziedzińca otoczony jasnym dwukondygnacyjnym, renesansowym zamkiem z arkadowymi krużgankami na podobieństwo zamku królewskiego na Wawelu w Krakowie. Po bokach dwie kwadratowe wieże, z prawej z zieloną kopułą, po lewej obronna z kwadratowym dachem koloru jasnobrązowego, takiego jak reszta budynku. Po prawej stronie mury trzeciej części zamku. Przed nimi dwa oddzielone od reszty kwadraty z trawnikiem.
Stryszawa Tourist region: Beskid Mały i Makowski
Imagine a car trip during which you can see how legendary folk toys are made, find out what famous director Billy Wilder has in common with Sucha Beskidzka, eat kremówki (cream cakes) famous all over Poland, order lunch in the place where Master Twardowski officiated, and visit the enchanted city of angels. Fifty-four kilometres of such fantastic curiosities? Get behind the wheel and set off at once!

Piktogram długość trasy 54 kilometres

Piktogram miejsce startu Stryszawa, near the Beskid Wooden Toy Centre.

Piktogram dojazd the trail from road no. 946 connecting Łękawice (in the west) with Sucha Beskidzka (in the east). You need to turn south in Stryszawa by the Orlen petrol station and drive 2 kilometres to the centre of the village.

Piktogram mapa 


The journey begins in the south-western corner of Małopolska, among the hills of the Beskid Żywiecki. Getting here requires some patience, as the roads are winding and narrow, as is the case in the mountains. However, once you are in the Beskid Wooden Toy Centre, you can relax after all these road meanderings. A visit to the Centre will be a sentimental journey to your childhood for adults and a trip into the land of dreams for children. While handling material objects and watching multimedia presentations, you will become acquainted with ancient and modern toys as well as learn many interesting facts about their history and manufacturing methods. There will also be an opportunity to have some fun, weather permitting, outside on the unusual playground.

Piktogram parkingWe suggest not looking for a free space in the small car park next to the Centre. A better idea is to leave your car near the church and walk a few dozen metres.

On the way to Master Twardowski's

Here are a few more words about the church above, to which an exciting story is connected. The building shell was completed in 1894. In the following years, it was finished and equipped, and services were held by priests commuting from Sucha Beskidzka. On 28 August 1897, Bishop Jan Puzyna, on his way to nearby Krzeszów for an episcopal visitation, was stopped in Dolna Stryszawa by the local inhabitants and asked to establish a separate parish in Stryszawa and delegate a pastor to it. The request was fulfilled, and the first pastor of the new parish was Father Franciszek Liptak, who arrived at Christmas 1897.

Now, hit the road on to the next stage of the journey. The first stage is to return to road No. 946, where you turn right and head towards Sucha Beskidzka, 5 kilometres from the centre of the town. Several interesting characters are associated with the town.

Let's start with Billy Wilder, one of the most famous directors, winner of 6 Oscars, creator of 'Half A Joke, Half Serious.' His parents ran a station restaurant in Dryden in the early 20th century. The building, located on the route of the Galician Trans-Siberian Railway, impresses with its unique atmosphere after being restored in recent years. It is hard not to notice it. as it is on the left side of the street we follow.

When you reach the crossroads with traffic lights at Market Square, turn left, and you will see an iconic place on your right - the Karczma Rzym. Its history relates to Master Twardowski, the hero of the ballad 'Mrs Twardowska', written by Adam Mickiewicz. It is said to be from here that the devil kidnapped the Master straight to the moon. Local bandits also used the beautifully preserved building from the 2nd half of the 18th century. It is worth visiting the inn to taste the Old Polish specialities served here and to feel the specific atmosphere of this place.

Piktogram parkingThe nearest (paid) car park, where you can leave your car, is just behind Market Square, in front of the railway tracks. However, it is advisable to use the car park by the castle, about 400 metres away.


The Suski Castle is a Renaissance residence, built by the Kraków-based Italian goldsmith Gaspar Castiglione in the 16th century. Over the centuries, the residence had many owners and served various functions, and it has been called a small Wawel due to its appearance. The castle belongs to the Sucha Beskidzka Municipality and houses, among other things, the Municipal Museum and an art gallery.

Moving on, let's also mention the Kicek dragon, which is said to have lived in the area centuries ago. The beast had its moods and sometimes annoyed the locals terribly. For many years, people could not deal with it until, finally, a daredevil chased Kicek away in some unspecified way. Upon hearing the news, the townspeople rushed to the market square and joyfully shouted Sucha without Kicek! We honestly believe this story!

The next stage of the journey lies ahead of you; heading further north, you will reach national road no. 28, turning left towards Wadowice, 20 kilometres from there through Dolina Skawy, between the slopes of the Beskid Mały (on the left) and the Beskid Makowski (on the right). These investments were necessary due to the creation of Lake Mucharskie (at the time of the construction of the Świnna Poręba dam, the investment was known as the Świnna Poręba Reservoir). The tourist development of the area is only at an early stage; it is already possible to enjoy boat cruises or climb the crown of the dam.

Wadowice. The town of John Paul II

Keep to road no. 28 when entering Wadowice. At the point where it turns right, go straight through the roundabout, pass the cemetery, and after reaching the next roundabout, turn right and after a few dozen metres, at the next roundabout, turn left to reach Jana Pawła II Square – Market Square in Wadowice.

Piktogram parkingIf you want to park as close as possible to all the attractions, drive onto Jana Pawła II Square and turn left when you reach the end of the square. After a few dozen metres, there is a small paid car park is on the left. If no spaces are available here, return to Lwowska Street and look for a car park on the adjacent streets.

On Jana Pawła II Square, you will find the three most important buildings in the town: the Basilica of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, next to which there is the Museum of the Holy Father John Paul II Family Home nearby the Municipal Museum. After visiting places connected with the figure of the Polish Pope, you should visit one of the nearby cafes and try the famous "kremówki papieskie," which John Paul II mentioned during his last visit to Wadowice in 1999.

Suppose you want to get to know the town better. In that case, it is worth walking along the Galician Wadowice Trail to discover its other monuments and places of interest.

Following the Kalwaria Paths

Piktogram opcja wycieczkiWhen travelling with children, you may want to consider not following any further directions and choose one of the places that will certainly provide lots of fun for the youngest: the complex of theme parks, including the Miniature Park in Inwałd (9 kilometres along road no. 52 in the direction of Andrychów) or the Zatorland Amusemen Park in Zator (15 kilometres along road no. 28 to the north). The  Energylandia Amusement Park in the latter town should be left for another occasion, as you need at least one day to enjoy its attractions.

From the centre of Wadowice, take Lwowska Street, which should be familiar to you and, after reaching the roundabout where national roads no. 28 and no. 52 meet, drive straight ahead following the signs to Kraków. You will now have a 13-kilometre section ahead of you to your next destination, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska. As you reach this town, you see an extensive view of its surroundings. Finding the famous Marian-Passion Sanctuary is not difficult. Driving up to the top of the hill in the centre of the village, you will find yourself in Market Square, where you should turn right at the traffic lights, and the main street will lead you to your destination.

Piktogram parkingThere are numerous parking lots near the church. On Sundays and on Marian feasts, there are a large number of pilgrims, so parking in the immediate vicinity of the monastery complex may not be possible. You should then use the parking lots located slightly lower.

The Bernardine Fathers are the hosts of one of the most important Polish shrines, which has been on the UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage List since 1999. The largest crowds of pilgrims come here for the Passion Mysteries, culminating in the reenactment of Christ's Passion on Good Friday.

A visit to the basilica with the miraculous painting of Our Lady of Kalwaria and a walk along the Kalwaria Paths connected with the Passion of Christ and the life of Mary are obligatory elements of a stay in Kalwaria Zebrzydowska. It is also worthwhile to set off on the Wojciech Weiss Kalwaria Route. The outstanding painter and rector of the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków lived and worked here at the beginning of the 20th century. Since the 18th century, the area has been known for its excellent carpenters. The first public school teaching artistic furniture making was established in Kalwaria in 1887.

Where angels live

Continue along the same street you came from to Market Square, where you turn right towards Kraków. After about 1.5 km, in the village of Brody, turn right following the signpost indicating the road to Palcza. On the right, you can see the buildings of the Kalwaria Paths. You have to keep an eye on the road because, after 2 kilometres, in a place with a signpost indicating the way to the centre, you turn left and, along a narrow local road, drive up the hill to Lanckorona, an incredibly charming town called the town of angels and lovers.

Piktogram parkingYou can leave your car in the streets leading to the town square or directly on it. On sunny weekends, finding a free place takes work.

Now that you're here, it's time to soak in the awe-inspiring atmosphere of this place. Admire the characteristic houses in Market Square. Immerse yourself in the history of Lanckorona at the Regional Museum. Visit the Church of St. John the Baptist, a majestic structure founded in the 14th century by King Casimir the Great. Don't miss the ruins of the Lanckorona Castle, a sight that will surely leave you in awe. As you wander, take the time to admire the historic wooden villas that line the way.

All the places of interest are close to each other and visiting them does not take much time or effort. However, if you get tired, you can rest in one of the numerous cafes, soaking up the specific atmosphere of the village. A souvenir of your stay in Lanckorona could be delightfully colourful crockery or a statue of an angel, which has become one of the symbols of the village. For several years now, in mid-December, the Festival of Angels has been held here, attracting visitors from all over the world, workshops, competitions and exhibitions. It is impossible to describe the atmosphere of this event; you must feel it when you come to Lanckorona to meet the Angels. See you there!

Could you turn a one-day trip into a longer expedition?

The proposed car trip can be part of a two-day or extended excursion. It can be combined with hiking on the surrounding hiking trails. Choices include:

  • conquering Jałowiec, visiting places where the Primate of the Millennium Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński and Father Karol Wojtyła, later Pope John Paul II, hiked. Necessary tips can be found in the description of the walking trail ‘To Jałowiec from Stryszawa’,
  • an ascent of Mt Mała Babia along a rarely chosen route, which includes Babi Szałas, Hala Kamińskiego abundant with blueberries, the northernmost point of Slovakia and Gruba Jodła. This hiking route is described in the text ‘From Zawoja to Mt Mała Babia’,
  • visiting Leskowiec and the mountain sanctuary there. Wandering along the ‘Beskid Mały Trails’ you will also see some amazing chapels,

You can book accommodation in Zawoja, Stryszawa or one of the surrounding villages and combine hiking with exploring the route by car.

There are many possibilities, and we are sure you will find something to your liking!  

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