As we headed southwestward from Gdansk back toward Germany, we decided to stay a couple of nights in Torun, a very nice historic city, maybe best known as the birthplace of Nicholas Copernicus, one of history’s most important astronomers. His publication at the very end of his life arguing that our solar system was heliocentric, not Earth centric, was of revolutionary significance. This countered the Catholic church’s position that the Earth was the center of the universe. Copenicus was aware that his heretical ideas would have been cause enough to have him put to death. Although he long had the data that supported his position, he had to withhold it until the end of life to make it public. Today this totally Catholic city gladly honors him with a prominent bronze statue, museum at his birthplace, and a street name. Too bad he had to miss all the fuss.

Nicolas Copernicus

Nicolas Copernicus

Presumed birthplace of Copernicus

Presumed birthplace of Copernicus

Fancy door

Fancy doorway. Dom mean residence.

We found a nice apartment near the center of the old town with most all the comfort and conveniences of home.

Our apartment faced the very quiet back direction.

Our apartment faced the very quiet back direction.

Dining room with living room and bedroom above

Dining room with living room and bedroom above

We even had a private, sunn terrace.

We even had a private, sunny terrace.

At the end of our street was a decorative statue of maybe an important female of the town. We seemed to fixate on her features, not on the plaque.

Fine bronze

Fine bronze

Included in our apartment price was a daily breakfast. But it was in a separate place several blocks away. It was worth the daily walk, such a splendid place it was. The generous buffet matched the quality of the historic surroundings.

Breakfast in this hotel and former granary

Breakfast in this hotel and former granary

The breakfast room

The breakfast room

Part of the buffet

Part of the buffet

More breakfast offerings

More breakfast offerings

The hotel was built into part of the old city fortified wall.

One of several surviving city gates

One of several surviving city gates

We can’t seem to get enough of just walking around towns looking at the details. Here are a few of what we saw.

One of the pedestrian malls. Buildings nicely restored.

One of the pedestrian malls. Buildings nicely restored.

View down a side lane, not yet restored

View down a side lane, not yet restored

A sign we like to see - the way to a public toilet, the WC.

A sign we like to see – the way to a public toilet, the WC.

Poland is probably the most Catholic country on earth. Angels flutter about.

Poland is probably the most Catholic country on earth. Angels flutter about.

Chopin slept here - well, he actually spent a summer here in his youth.

Chopin slept here – well, he actually spent a summer here in his youth.

Door with lots of potential. Note that building on left has been renovated.

Door with lots of potential. Note that building on left has been renovated.

Torun has many churches, mostly Roman Catholic. We went inside a few of them.

Pretty ornate, eh, and right warm and friendly. Not cold and dark like so many western cathedrals.

Pretty ornate, eh, and right warm and friendly. Not cold and dark like so many western cathedrals.

This church got repurposed. It's now an art gallery.

This church got repurposed. It’s now an art gallery.

Inside the church was an interesting sculpture exhibit.

Inside the church was an interesting sculpture exhibit.

Isn't this a fancy place?

Isn’t this a fancy place?

Torun is located on the Vistula River. We enjoyed its peacefulness.

View of the Vistula river from the fortress wall

View of the Vistula river from the fortress wall

Many people hang out here on the banks of the river.

Many people hang out here on the banks of the river.

Although Torun is one of Poland’s oldest cities, it really got a boost when the Teutonic Knights built a fortress here and set about converting the heathen to Christianity in the 13th century. Some of the remains of the fortification are still lying around.

Fortress remains from the days of the Teutonic Knights

Fortress remains from the days of the Teutonic Knights

Fortress couldn't hold out against improved weaponry.

Fortress couldn’t hold out against improved weaponry.

The city takes on a special allure in the evening when many streets and public buildings are lighted.

The main plaza in the evening

The main plaza in the evening

The outdoor cafes are jammed

The outdoor cafes were jammed

The fountains were active, too.

The fountains were active, too.

At 10:30 one evening we came upon a footrace. All ages were participating.

At 10:30 one evening we came upon a footrace. All ages were participating.

this lady was enjoying the race, too.

this lady was enjoying the race, too.

We saw a poster for a concert – Mozart and lovely soloists. Couldn’t resist. Started in an hour. Rushed to our apartment, ate dinner, changed clothes and walked back in a lightening and thunder shower. Made it. The concert was upstairs in a lovely Renaissance setting, just the right venue for chamber music.

Local artists making good music.

Local artists made good music.

The concert hall, located on the main plaza

The concert hall, located on the main plaza

All good things had to come to an end as we bid adieu to Torun’s famous son, Nicolas Copernicus.

Copernicus - the man who put the Earth in its proper place.

Copernicus – the man who put the Earth in its proper place.

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