Poznań Royal-Imperial Route

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The Royal-Imperial Route in Poznań (Polish: Trakt Królewsko-Cesarski w Poznaniu, German: Route der Könige und Kaiser) is a tourist walk running through the most important parts of the city and presenting the history, culture and identity of Poznań. The Route leads in a westward direction, from The Church of St. John Jerusalem behind the Wall to the Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and St. Florian.

The Royal–Imperial Route in Poznań is an idea of a tourist product that would combine important places and historical monuments of the city. "The Royal – Imperial Route" axis provides cultural, artistic and educational events that integrate the activities of all parties concerned and are the platform for co-operation of various entities: public administration, culture and science institutions, representatives of the academic circle, and tourist organisations. That is why "The Royal–Imperial Route" is Poznań's first complete partner project in which the City Hall motivates the other parties to work for the development of cultural tourism of the city and region.

Thematic lines[edit]

  • Route of history "Poland began here... – Poland began in Poznań...". The name of the theme recalls the words of Pope John Paul II, who reminded that the history of Christian Poland (and its statehood) began in Poznań, to some extent together with the European integration, or rather affiliation to the Mediterranean culture instead of Byzantine one. The thousand-year history inscribed in the areas of the old Poznań (from Ostrów Tumski to the Old Town) and the Polish state provide excellent material and inspiration to develop a tourist offer, which could be briefly described with the following sentence: in Poznań you travel to the beginnings of Poland – not only in the family context, but also in respect of the national identity.
  • Route of architecture monuments "That is how Poznań was built – Route of Work and Beauty". Different architectural styles in Poznań: from Romanesque to Secession (Cathedral – Town Hall – Parish Church– Castle), and transparent development of both the urban system and cultural content, allow to guide the tourist through successive stages (cultural layers) of the city, from which the history of people who worked and lived here can be traced over the centuries.
  • Artistic (Cultural) Route "Cultural inspirations – Route bustling with (cultural) life… – Entertainment/Cultural ROUTing". The artistic offer constitutes an important element of cultural tourism. Cultural programs affect the significance of the city on the map of cultural – city tourism marketing to a great extent. For that reason the elements of the integrated Tourist Product "Royal-Imperial Route in Poznań" involve many diversified product programs within this area.
  • Route of Wielkopolska traditions "Not just potatoes with cottage cheese – Good Food and Fun". Emphasizing one's own local identity through presenting the customs, traditions or values to the public constitutes the only "resources" exploited for tourist purposes. Yet, presenting the tradition of Wielkopolska Region in Poznań will be a wonderful supplement to the cultural offer of the city, highlighting at the same time its genuine individual character and regionalism.

Historic reference[edit]

The name of The Royal-Imperial Route has its ground in the history of the city.

"Royal" comes from the fact that Mieszko I's palatium served as a residence for the first kings of Poland, whose tombs are located in Poznań Cathedral's crypt. The cathedral is the place of burial of the following rulers:

The Royal Castle (Zamek Królewski), erected on Przemysł Hill (Góra Przemysła) at the end of the 13th century as the largest of its time in Poland, was where Polish as well as foreign kings were frequently received.

Poznań was also an emperors' city:

  • The first emperor to visit the city was Otto III on his way to Gniezno, where in 1000 (AD), together with the Polish sovereign, Bolesław the Brave, he offered prayers to God at the tomb of St. Adalbert, who is now the patron saint of the European Union. Henry II, Frederick I (Barbarossa) and John of Luxembourg all attempted to take Poznań. Two Tsars, Peter the Great and Alexander I, also paid state visits to the city.
  • In 1806, Napoleon Bonaparte moved into the Jesuit College for few weeks, from where he commanded his army.
  • The German Kaiser Wilhelm II awarded Poznań the status of "imperial-residence city". The castle erected for the Kaiser in 1910 was the last imperial residence built in Europe.

Description of the route[edit]

The route shows how the city has changed and developed through the centuries and is as follows: Lake Malta – Church of St. John of Jerusalem behind the Wall – Śródka – Bishop Jordan Bridge – Ostrów Tumski (the Cathedral Island) – Chrobry Bridge – Chwaliszewo – Old Market Square – Paderewskiego Street – Wolności Square – 27 Grudnia Street – Fredry Street – Theatre Bridge – Dąbrowskiego Street – Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and St. Florian.

Attractions and monuments[edit]

The full list of partners[edit]

The Royal–Imperial Route Programme is based on partnership on many levels. The Programme involves Full Partners, Associated Partners and additionally Auxiliary Partners are invited to the individual projects (e.g. schools, auxiliary self-governments, NGOs). All these institutions inform one another about their actions, projects and initiatives related to the Strategy. The Mayor of Poznań controls the proper implementation of the Strategy's provisions. All works related to the implementation of the Strategy are co-ordinated by the Programme Office which operates within the structures of the Poznań City Hall.


  • Dorota Matyaszczyk, Poznań, The Royal-Imperial Route, tourist guidebook, Wydawnictwo Miejskie, Poznań 2008, ISBN 978-83-7503-041-9,
  • Konsorcjum PART S.A. i RES Management, Development Strategy of The National Tourist Product "The Royal – Imperial Route In Poznań", Poznań 2005

External links[edit]