Opole & Moszna

Opole & Moszna

I returned to Poland in May 2012 having visited in November 2011. However I had planned the latest trip from early 2011 in order to my good friend Natalia, who was studying in Opole not expecting to also visit later that year. My return to Opole was not quite as smooth as my first trip. Natalia had returned from her holidays in her native Ukraine to find the holidays she told me had changed and so she would now be having lectures for a significant part of my short trip. We were still to visit Moszna but I would be going to Krakow alone. I extended that visit to two days (one would have been too short) and flew to Wroclaw.

In my previous trip I wrote how Polish trains were reasonably clean. My 2nd class ride from Warsaw to Opole was particularly good with power slots. So I decided this time to ‘upgrade’ to the still very inexpensive first class from Wroclaw to Opole..or in retrospect perhaps a downgrade.

The conditions of my intercity trains failed to match my 2nd train class ride from Warsaw before. Not just lacking in power points but lacking in cleanliness (although I would not say it was exceptionally dirty).
After the obligatory delay I arrived in Opole and waited for Natalia to meet me at the station.
Unfortunately the place of my previous stay Hotel Zacisze was fully booked and I settled on finding a room a Hotel Piast.

Recommended in at least one Lonely Planet edition as having enviable location in Opole. Its location is just that. The rooms I stayed (I had two separate bookings) were clean, very reasonably priced. The hotel overlooked the Odra river and located in a perhaps in or very close to the most picturesque spot of tiny Opole. A ‘minibar’ but with free (non alcoholic) drinks, breakfast and wifi (although with a very poor quality of connection – perhaps the connection is for the reception!) the connection was poor in both rooms I stayed in.

Having been to Opole before there was not actually much new for me to see. On my final day in Opole, Natalia and I walked around an area of a park we did not go to before finding a beautiful and photogenic lake, some nice scenery. On my two full days in Opole I ate at Pub Maska, another LP recommendation but also the recommendation of a staff at Hotel piast.
The restaurant is stylish, has an English menu and depending on what you order nice as well.
I wasn’t a huge fan of the Rolanda skaska z syniki wieprzowej (or Roulade of Pork ham which came with potato dumplings and red cabbage). Particularly the dumplings but the deserts were nice and the pierogi I ordered on the first day was more appetising.

Moszna Castle

Mozna is a small town named after its original settlers Mosce or Moschin, is locally famous for its rather romantic looking castle set in grounds with a lake and beautiful rhododendrons. It had been Natalia’s suggestion to visit there and we took the twice daily (if I remember) minivan to there. The minivan passing through some nice settings stopped at a turn off to the castle and we began the short walk to the castle grounds. The castle itself was once the property of Prussian owners but it fell into Soviet hands who applied their usual care or lack of care of the castle. However it since passed back into Polish hands and is now a hospital of sorts. A public health centre for therapies of Neuroses. Despite its use it is still open to visitors and we could see a nice staircase as well as a dining area in a nice setting. At the front of the castle is where the lake and colourful flowers are laid.

Outside we walked in the beautiful settings to the rear of the castle. It is actually a nice place for a stroll, to relax, for a picnic if allowed and to spend with friends, family or other loved ones.