Lower Silesian Voivodeship

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For the historical region, see Lower Silesia.
Lower Silesian Voivodeship
Województwo dolnośląskie
Voivodeship
Flag of Lower Silesian Voivodeship
Flag
Coat of arms of Lower Silesian Voivodeship
Coat of arms
Location within Poland
Location within Poland
Division into counties
Division into counties
Coordinates (Wrocław): 51°07′N 17°02′E / 51.117°N 17.033°E / 51.117; 17.033
Country  Poland
Capital Wrocław
Counties*
Area
 • Total 19,946.74 km2 (7,701.48 sq mi)
Population (2013)
 • Total 2,914,362
 • Density 150/km2 (380/sq mi)
 • Urban 2,047,151
 • Rural 837,097
Car plates D
Website http://www.umwd.pl/
  • further divided into 169 gminas
Wrocław Main Station is a major railway hub

Lower Silesian Voivodeship, or Lower Silesia Province[1] (in Polish, województwo dolnośląskie [vɔjɛˈvut͡stfɔ dɔlnɔˈɕlɔ̃skʲɛ]), is one of the 16 voivodeships (provinces) into which Poland is currently divided. It lies in southwestern Poland. Its capital and largest city is Wrocław, situated on the Odra (Oder) river. The voivodeship is famous for its large number of castles and palaces. It is one of the voivodeships in Poland that is most visited by tourists.

History and Geography[edit]

The voivodeship was created on 1 January 1999 out of the former Wrocław, Legnica, Wałbrzych and Jelenia Góra Voivodeships, following the Polish local government reforms adopted in 1998. It covers an area of 19,946 square kilometres (7,701 sq mi), and as of 2013 has a total population of 2 914 362.

Although much of the region is relatively low-lying it also includes Sudeten Foreland and part of the Sudetes mountain range running along the Polish/Czech border. Popular ski resorts in Lower Silesian Voivodeship include Karpacz and Szklarska Poręba in the Karkonosze mountains. Other important tourist destinations in the voivodeship include the chief city, Wrocław, as well as the towns of Jelenia Góra and Legnica. The town of Boleslawiec is famed for its pottery.

The voivodeship has the largest number of spa towns in Poland: Cieplice Śląskie-Zdrój, Czerniawa-Zdrój, Długopole-Zdrój, Duszniki-Zdrój, Jedlina-Zdrój, Kudowa-Zdrój, Lądek-Zdrój, Polanica-Zdrój, Przerzeczyn-Zdrój, Szczawno-Zdrój, Świeradów-Zdrój.

Lower Silesian Voivodeship is bordered by Lubusz Voivodeship to the north-west, Greater Poland Voivodeship to the north-east, Opole Voivodeship to the south-east, the Czech Republic to the south, and Germany (the State of Saxony) to the west.

Transport[edit]

An international airport is located in Wrocław–Copernicus Airport.

The main railway station is Wrocław Główny.

The A4 motorway, A8 motorway and A18 motorway run through the voivodship.

Tourism[edit]

Lower Silesian Voivodeship is one of the most visited voivodeship in Poland. It is famous for a large number of castles and palaces (more than 100), inter alia: Książ Castle, Czocha Castle, Chojnik Castle, Grodziec castle, Gorzanów Castle, Kliczków Castle. There is also a lot in the Jelenia Góra valley.

The voivodship's most widely-visited city is Wrocław with many sights and attractions, inter alia yearly Aquapark Wrocław.

Other highlights include: Kłodzko Fortress, Fort Silberberg, Wambierzyce, Legnickie Pole, Henryków, Lubiąż Abbey, Krzeszów Abbey, Oleśnica Mała, Vang stave church, Churches of Peace, Sokołowsko, Cave Bear, Museum of Gold Mining and Metallurgy in Złoty Stok, Coal Mine in Nowa Ruda, Museum of Industry and Railway in Jaworzyna Śląska, Museum of Papermaking in Duszniki-Zdrój, Skull Chapel in Czermna, Mount Ślęża, Table Mountains, Owl Mountains, Karkonosze, The Main Trail Sudetes, Barycz Valley Landscape Park and connected with the history of World War II - complex tunnels Project Riese, a German Gross-Rosen concentration camp, German War Cemetery and Park Peace in the Nadolice Wielkie.

Protected areas[edit]

"Hell" on Szczeliniec Wielki (Table Mountains National Park)

Protected areas in Lower Silesian Voivodeship:

and many areas of Natura 2000 network.

Economy[edit]

Lower Silesia is one of the richest regions in Poland. GDP per capita in 2007 accounted for 108.7% of the average for the country. Since 2005, the voivodeship recorded the highest in the country economic growth rate (around 10% per annum).

GDP per capita in Lower Silesia Voivodeship: GDP in Poland:

GDP per capita in Lower Silesian Voivodeship and Poland
Lower Silesian Voivodeship GDP per capita Poland GDP per capita
2000 $10 440 (+2.8%) 2000 $10 140 (+4.0%)
2005 $13 060 (+4.9%) 2005 $12 600 (+3.5%)
2006 $13 700 (+7.3%) 2006 $13 020 (+6.2%)
2007 $14 980 (+9.5%) 2007 $13 760 (+6.5%)
2008 $16 030 (+7.2%) 2008 $14 450 (+5.0%)
2009 $16 350 (+2.0%) 2009 $14 720 (+1.9%)

The southwest part of the Voivodeship is considered part of the so-called Black Triangle, an area of heavily industrialization and environmental damage on the three-way border of Poland, Germany, and the Czech Republic.[2]

Cities and towns[edit]

Wrocław, capital of Lower Silesian Voivodeship
Książ Castle in Wałbrzych
The Church of Peace in Świdnica is a UNESCO world heritage site

The voivodeship contains 91 cities and towns. These are listed below in descending order of population (according to official figures for 2006[3]):

  1. Wrocław city county (631,188)
  2. Wałbrzych city county(119,955)
  3. Legnica city county(102,708)
  4. Jelenia Góra city county(83,097)
  5. Lubin (74,886)
  6. Głogów (69,608)
  7. Świdnica (60,213)
  8. Bolesławiec (40,837)
  9. Oleśnica (36,951)
  10. Dzierżoniów (34,678)
  11. Zgorzelec (32,925)
  12. Bielawa (31,219)
  13. Oława (30,908)
  14. Kłodzko (28,249)
  15. Jawor (24,347)
  16. Nowa Ruda (24,261)
  17. Świebodzice (23,126)
  18. Polkowice (22,279)
  19. Lubań (22,137)
  20. Kamienna Góra (21,440)
  21. Bogatynia (19,068)
  22. Strzegom (16,782)
  23. Boguszów-Gorce (16,687)
  24. Złotoryja (16,503)
  25. Ząbkowice Śląskie (16,242)
  26. Jelcz-Laskowice (15,196)
  27. Chojnów (14,389)
  28. Brzeg Dolny (12,786)
  29. Góra (12,574)
  30. Wołów (12,286)
  31. Strzelin (12,192)
  32. Trzebnica (12,180)
  33. Milicz (12,004)
  34. Kowary (11,824)
  35. Syców (10,712)
  36. Bystrzyca Kłodzka (10,638)
  37. Kudowa-Zdrój (10,204)
  38. Lwówek Śląski (9,687)
  39. Pieszyce (9,490)
  40. Ziębice (9,234)
  41. Środa Śląska (8,800)
  42. Oborniki Śląskie (8,426)
  43. Chocianów (8,215)
  44. Gryfów Śląski (7,128)
  45. Szklarska Poręba (7,094)
  46. Głuszyca (6,999)
  47. Żarów (6,902)
  48. Polanica-Zdrój (6,900)
  49. Twardogóra (6,866)
  50. Sobótka (6,780)
  51. Piława Górna (6,779)
  52. Żmigród (6,573)
  53. Przemków (6,551)
  54. Lubawka (6,529)
  55. Piechowice (6,494)
  56. Stronie Śląskie (6,246)
  57. Lądek-Zdrój (6,181)
  58. Ścinawa (5,934)
  59. Pieńsk (5,799)
  60. Szczawno-Zdrój (5,506)
  61. Kąty Wrocławskie (5,418)
  62. Bolków (5,380)
  63. Jaworzyna Śląska (5,240)
  64. Szczytna (5,234)
  65. Jedlina-Zdrój (5,116)
  66. Duszniki-Zdrój (5,113)
  67. Bierutów (5,066)
  68. Karpacz (5,063)
  69. Olszyna (4,786)
  70. Leśna (4,752)
  71. Świeradów-Zdrój (4,554)
  72. Mieroszów (4,515)
  73. Zawidów (4,412)
  74. Mirsk (4,136)
  75. Nowogrodziec (4,055)
  76. Wojcieszów (3,940)
  77. Siechnice (3,851)
  78. Prochowice (3,702)
  79. Niemcza (3,121)
  80. Węgliniec (3,072)
  81. Złoty Stok (2,930)
  82. Bardo (2,860)
  83. Wąsosz (2,828)
  84. Międzylesie (2,776)
  85. Radków (2,460)
  86. Świerzawa (2,439)
  87. Międzybórz (2,356)
  88. Wiązów (2,230)
  89. Prusice (2,203)
  90. Wleń (1,884)
  91. Lubomierz (1,818)

Administrative division[edit]

Lower Silesian Voivodeship is divided into 30 counties (powiats), four of which are city counties. These are further divided into 169 gminas.

The counties are listed in the following table (ordering within categories is by decreasing population).

English and
Polish names
Area
(km²)
Population
(2006)
Seat Other towns Total
gminas
City counties
Wrocław 293 635,280 1
Wałbrzych 84.70 120,197 1
Legnica 56 105,485 1
Jelenia Góra 109 86,663 1
Land counties
Wałbrzych County
powiat wałbrzyski
514 184,594 Wałbrzych * Boguszów-Gorce, Głuszyca, Szczawno-Zdrój, Jedlina-Zdrój, Mieroszów 9
Kłodzko County
powiat kłodzki
1,643 166,447 Kłodzko Nowa Ruda, Bystrzyca Kłodzka, Kudowa-Zdrój, Polanica-Zdrój, Stronie Śląskie, Lądek-Zdrój, Szczytna, Duszniki-Zdrój, Międzylesie, Radków 14
Świdnica County
powiat świdnicki
743 160,337 Świdnica Świebodzice, Strzegom, Żarów, Jaworzyna Śląska 8
Lubin County
powiat lubiński
712 105,582 Lubin Ścinawa 4
Dzierżoniów County
powiat dzierżoniowski
478 104,852 Dzierżoniów Bielawa, Gola Dzierżoniowska, Niemcza, Pieszyce, Piława Górna 7
Oleśnica County
powiat oleśnicki
1,049 103,366 Oleśnica Syców, Twardogóra, Bierutów, Międzybórz 8
Wrocław County
powiat wrocławski
1,116 101,913 Wrocław * Sobótka, Kąty Wrocławskie, Siechnice 9
Zgorzelec County
powiat zgorzelecki
838 94,408 Zgorzelec Bogatynia, Pieńsk, Zawidów, Węgliniec 7
Bolesławiec County
powiat bolesławiecki
1,303 88,343 Bolesławiec Nowogrodziec 6
Głogów County
powiat głogowski
443 87,651 Głogów 6
Trzebnica County
powiat trzebnicki
1,026 77,285 Trzebnica Oborniki Śląskie, Żmigród, Prusice 6
Oława County
powiat oławski
524 71,118 Oława Jelcz-Laskowice 4
Ząbkowice Śląskie County
powiat ząbkowicki
801 69,297 Ząbkowice Śląskie Ziębice, Złoty Stok, Bardo 7
Jelenia Góra County
powiat jeleniogórski
628 63,817 Jelenia Góra * Kowary, Szklarska Poręba, Piechowice, Karpacz 9
Polkowice County
powiat polkowicki
780 61,138 Polkowice Chocianów, Przemków 6
Lubań County
powiat lubański
428 57,061 Lubań Olszyna, Leśna, Świeradów-Zdrój 7
Legnica County
powiat legnicki
745 52,995 Legnica * Chojnów, Prochowice 8
Jawor County
powiat jaworski
581 52,058 Jawor Bolków 6
Środa Śląska County
powiat średzki
704 49,208 Środa Śląska 5
Lwówek Śląski County
powiat lwówecki
710 48,144 Lwówek Śląski Gryfów Śląski, Mirsk, Wleń, Lubomierz 5
Wołów County
powiat wołowski
675 47,445 Wołów Brzeg Dolny 3
Kamienna Góra County
powiat kamiennogórski
396 46,470 Kamienna Góra Lubawka 4
Złotoryja County
powiat złotoryjski
575 45,744 Złotoryja Wojcieszów, Świerzawa 6
Strzelin County
powiat strzeliński
622 44,146 Strzelin Wiązów 5
Milicz County
powiat milicki
715 36,845 Milicz 3
Góra County
powiat górowski
738 36,556 Góra Wąsosz 4
* seat not part of the county

Governors[edit]

Name Period
Witold Krochmal 4 January 1999 - 22 October 2001
Ryszard Nawrat 22 October 2001 - 21 March 2003
Stanisław Łopatowski 31 March 2003 - 21 December 2005
Krzysztof Grzelczyk 21 December 2005 - 29 November 2007
Rafał Jurkowlaniec 29 November 2007 - 1 December 2010
Aleksander Skorupa 28 December 2010 -

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°05′N 16°24′E / 51.083°N 16.400°E / 51.083; 16.400