Wadowice [ vadɔv iʦɛ ʲ ] ( German medieval city woman, 1939-1945 Wadowitz ) is located in Poland between Cracow ( south-west, 48 km) and Bielsko at the feet of the small Beskydy Mountains, a mountain range in the Carpathian foreland. The city on the Skawa ( Watch ) has about 20,000 inhabitants, is the administrative center of the city and rural community Wadowice, the powiat Wadowicki and belongs to Lesser Poland Province ( Małopolskie ).

Today Wadowice is the administrative and industrial center in the region.


The first mention of the village dates from the year 1327. Already two years earlier, at the Valley of Skawa a church was built, which until 1335 a branch church of Mucharz, then remained of Woźniki. After the granting of town rights in 1430 a fire destroyed Wadowice. The town recovered far from it and fell off to an insignificant town. Although Wadowice had continued to city rights, but the reconstruction was quickly zunichtegemacht by repeated fires, wars and epidemics. In the Middle Ages there were in the city and its surroundings with a high proportion of German immigrants ( Forest German ).

Until the mid-15th century Wadowice belonged to the Duchy of Auschwitz, then to the Duchy of Zator. In the 16th century, the city developed into a center for the trade and crafts. The church was in the 16th and 17th century the Cistercian monastery in Mogiły, which now belongs to the district of Cracow Nowa Huta. 1726 broke again a great fire, which also destroyed the church.

Since the first partition of Poland from 1772 to 1918 Wadowice belonged to the Duchy of Zator under Habsburg rule Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria.

In the 19th century in Wadowice major industrial companies arose mainly for the manufacture of articles of commerce. At this time, over 20 % of the approximately 10,000 inhabitants Jews. Since 1867 Wadowice was Austrian district of the city. From 1918 to 1939 it was the administrative seat of the Polish Powiats Wadowice.

During the period of German occupation between 1939 and 1945, the river formed the boundary between the Skawa General of Poland and the German Reich. Wadowice was incorporated into the German district of Bielsko. During this time a prison camp, a detention camp and a ghetto was set up in the city.

After the Second World War Wadowice was re- Polish county seat, but lost this status in 1975 and got him in 1999 with the reform of the circuit structure in Poland again.


The main attraction of Wadowice has been for many years the home of Karol Józef Wojtyła, who was born here # 3 on May 18, 1920 as the third child of Karol Wojtyła and Emilia Wojtyłowa in a very modest apartment the street Rynek on the 1st floor. He grew up in the city. On October 16, 1978 he was in Rome for Pope John Paul II (Polish: Jan Paweł II ) selected. The house is now a museum, the visitors have become an important economic factor for the city. Mostly Poland organize regular pilgrimages there.

Around the basilica on Plac Jana Paweł II, a parish church, whose origins date back to the 14th century, the charming city center covers. The oldest buildings date from the 19th century

Exhibits from the city and the region can be found in the " Muzeum w Miejskie Wadowicach " Kościelna 4


Wadowice has twinning closed with

Sons and daughters of the town

  • Martinus Vadovius (Polish Marcin Wadowita ) ( 1567-1641 ), a Polish theologian, philosopher, and dean of the University of Cracow
  • Emil Lask (1875-1915), German philosopher
  • Berta Lask (1878-1967), German writer
  • Ada Sari (1886-1968) as Jadwiga Schayer, Polish opera diva
  • Brumowski Godwin (1889-1936), Austrian fighter pilot
  • Jerzy Kluger (* 1919-2011 ), businessman and friend of Pope John Paul II
  • John Paul II, (1920-2005), born Karol Józef Wojtyła as, 1978-2005 Pope
  • Rafał Bujnowski ( b. 1974 ), Polish painter and graphic artist


For urban and rural municipality ( gmina miejsko - wiejska ) Wadowice include the following localities:

  • Babica
  • Barwałd Dolny ( German: Lower Bärwald )
  • Chocznia
  • Gorzen Gorny
  • Gorzen Dolny
  • Jaroszowice ( German: Virgin Thal )
  • Kaczyna
  • Klecza Dolna
  • Klecza Gorna
  • Ponikiew
  • Roków
  • Stanisław Górny
  • Wadowice
  • Wysoka
  • Zawadka