Coordinates: 52°16′N 20°59′E / 52.267°N 20.983°E / 52.267; 20.983
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Wilson Square
Panorama of Żoliborz with Wilson Square
Location of Żoliborz within Warsaw
Location of Żoliborz within Warsaw
Coordinates: 52°16′N 20°59′E / 52.267°N 20.983°E / 52.267; 20.983
Country Poland
Notable landmarks
 • MayorPaweł Michalec
Area8.47 km2 (3.27 sq mi)
 • Density6,900/km2 (18,000/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Area code+48 22
Websitezoliborz.um.warszawa.pl Edit this at Wikidata

Żoliborz (Polish pronunciation: [ʐɔˈlʲibɔʂ]) is one of the northern districts of the city of Warsaw. It is located directly to the north of the City Centre, on the left bank of the Vistula river. It has approximately 50,000 inhabitants and is one of the smallest boroughs of Warsaw. Despite its small size, the district has many green areas and mostly consists of low-rise architecture. Historically an upscale neighborhood and home to Warsaw's intelligentsia prior to World War II, Żoliborz is the second most expensive residential district in Warsaw after Śródmieście.[2]


In the 18th century the area belonged to the Piarists of a monastery in the nearby city of Warsaw. The monks started to parcel the grounds and allowed for the creation of various settlements on their fields, which were parceled between several villages. One of them was named Joli Bord (Beautiful Embankment in French, which was later transcribed to Polish language as Żoliborz). After 1831, the area was confiscated by Russian authorities, who erected the Warsaw Citadel there. The area was mostly unpopulated and even after the ban on construction of brick-made houses was lifted, it retained much of its rural character.

House designed by Barbara Brukalska, Niegolewskiego 8

After Poland regained its independence in 1918, the city of Warsaw started to grow rapidly and new areas were needed. In the 1920s, the area of Żoliborz was converted into a borough of Warsaw and the construction of new houses started. Until the late 1930s part of today's Żoliborz was built-up with houses notable for their modernist architecture. Open areas, parks and squares built there are regarded as fine examples of good urbanist architecture. Also, a so-called Żoliborz Oficerski (Officers' Żoliborz) was built up with villas for the officers of the Polish Army and other notable people of the epoch. Several star-shaped squares were built along the main axis of the borough, with the Plac Wilsona as the borough's centre and main transport hub.

Plac Wilsona in 1960s

During the Warsaw Uprising, one of the first struggles took part in Żoliborz. After the Polish resistance was defeated by Nazi German forces, Żoliborz was spared the fate of the rest of Warsaw and survived the war with less damage than many other areas.

The district has traditionally been where the intelligentsia live. The names of its estates: Żoliborz Dziennikarski (Journalists’ Żoliborz), Żoliborz Oficerski (Officers' Żoliborz), Żoliborz Urzędniczy (Clerks’ Żoliborz) are derived from the former inhabitants professions.

Żoliborz has a lot of beautiful architecture: charming old villas and colonies - properties built in the 1930s by the socialist Warsaw Housing Cooperative (WSM), which used to have common laundries, kindergartens and dining-rooms.

The main site of interest in Żoliborz is St. Stanislaus Kostka Church with the tomb of Blessed Father Jerzy Popiełuszko, which during the last 30 years has been visited by approximately 20,000,000 people (among them John Paul II).


According to the Warsaw's street marking system, Żoliborz can be further divided into three neighbourhoods:[3]

  • Marymont-Potok
  • Sady Żoliborskie
  • Stary Żoliborz

Famous people born in Żoliborz[edit]

Historical and notable sights[edit]

Comedy Theatre in Żoliborz
Plac Wilsona metro station
Warsaw Citadel
St. Stanislaus Kostka Church
Tomb of Blessed Father Jerzy Popiełuszko



  1. ^ a b "Statistics Poland _ Topics _ Population _ Population _ Area and population in the territorial profile in 2023". stat.gov.pl. Statistics Poland. Retrieved 26 October 2023.
  2. ^ "Cenowy ranking dzielnic Warszawy 2019 – gdzie najtaniej kupisz mieszkanie w stolicy?". 26 March 2019.
  3. ^ "Dzielnica Żoliborz - Zarząd Dróg Miejskich w Warszawie". zdm.waw.pl (in Polish). Retrieved 18 May 2023.
  4. ^ "Upamiętnienie księdza Romana Indrzejczyka" (in Polish). izoliborz.pl. 3 October 2015. Retrieved 2016-11-09.
  5. ^ "Pomnik rtm. Pileckiego - na ostatniej prostej" (in Polish). um.warszawa.pl. Retrieved 2016-11-09.

External links[edit]