Fountains and water features


Jerzy Skarżyński

The dearth of watery attractions in the centre of this often arid city (at least in the summertime, and we will not mention the recent floods by the Vistula) is finally being addressed. The conversion of two of the Old Town’s formerly neglected central spaces (Maly Rynek and Plac Sczepanski) into quiet oases in the last couple of years has seen water brought a little more into the heart of things. The water feature – or is it a minimalist fountain? – now installed on Maly Rynek is a subtle and unobtrusive focal point for this small square at which one can linger quite contentedly and refresh the feet on a hot day. Just around the corner in Plac Szczepanski we find something rather more difficult to miss: a spectacular, multi-spout fountain proper. This beauty has, since its unveiling in May 2010 as part of the square’s redevelopment, quickly established as an attraction with those sections of the roving population who like to get themselves wet in public on hot days: children, students and some of the city’s more exuberant visitors (naming no names, of course). On the other side of Planty, close to the Philharmonia, there is another, fabulously ugly ‘contemporary’ fountain to be encountered. This one appears to be less popular with the frolicsome, perhaps because people on the whole continue to observe the traditional use of the Planty as a place for rest rather than high jinks. And at Plac Maria Magdaleny, between Kanonicza and Grodzka at the church of Saints Peter and Paul, there is a small and rather peculiar water feature suggestive of things too vulgar and unwholesome to described here.

Health warning: high spirits, youthful exuberance and Dutch courage aside, you are strongly advised by the city authorities not to bathe in, and still less ingest, these waters. They are far from being fit for human consumption.

Tags: fun, fountain, Plac Szczepanski, water, health, leisure, Maly Rynek
  • Latest modification: July 3, 2012 3:05:16 PM
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