Young tourists are invited to take part in a city tour full of puzzles, mysteries and surprises. Our adventure begins at the fountain by the town hall.The fountain was formerly the town’s water well, where the local townspeople used to draw their water before construction of the water supply network. The central part of the well is a statue of a lion wearing a royal crown. This same lion also features on the town hall, holding the clock on one of the walls. Take a closer look at the Kłodzko lions – they have two tails, just like the lion in the town’s coat of arms. Why? There are different explanations for this puzzle. According to one legend, a party of citizens were on their way home from Prague with a coat of arms received from the king. They were careless, and accidentally damaged the sculpture. Another legend states that the missing tail is due to bandits who attempted to steal the stone-carved coat of arms carried by the townsmen of Kłodzko. Yet another legend lays the blame on a careless royal painter who forgot to include the tail in the coat of arms. In any case, the townsmen brought the tailless lion back to the king who, as a gift of royal grace, ordered that a double-tailed lion be sculptured on the coat of arms, just in case. This time the townsmen reached home safely, and the lion remained with two tails until the present day.

Further below the fountain, in front of the town hall, you will see a whipping post which was erected here in 2011 exactly where the original medieval structure once stood. Unfortunately, the original post has not survived to the present time. The whipping post was once used to punish criminals such as thieves and robbers, who were tied to it to receive flogging. The post is topped by the figure of a thief with a sack filled with loot thrown over his back.

Strolling down the lower side of the market square you will see historic townhouses, each one with its own name. Do you recognize the two famous pharmacies ‘Under the Stag’ and ‘Under the Little African’ or the hotel ‘Under the Black Bear?’ Which of them do you like the most?

Leaving the market square, we go down Wita Stwosza Street to St. John’s Bridge . which is so old that its construction date is still debated by scholars. Some say that it is over 700 years old. It has survived many catastrophic floods which have ravaged the town. According to a legend, the bridge owes its unique strength to chicken eggs which were added to the mortar binding the stones together. The bridge features statues of saints commissioned by pious inhabitants of the Kłodzko land a few centuries after its construction. Do you recognize St. Francis, the patron saint of Kłodzko? Local residents used to pray to St. Francis, seeking his help in times of plague. This is why figures representing the sick have been sculptured at his feet.

Crossing the bridge, you reach Sand Island, surrounded by the Neisse River on one side and by the Młynówka River on the old town side. This part of the town has been frequently devastated by major floods – the last one in 1997. This is when the stone wolf above the entrance to one of the historical townhouse at. Grottgera

Street became a famous sight. With floodwaters ravaging the town, people recalled a certain psychic who once predicted that the wolf would drink water again when three sevens meet together and that came true exactly on July 7th, 1997 (07/07/1997). .

Leaving the Sand Island, we go back to the old town via Franciszkański Square. On the wall of the monastery, behind the statue of St. Francisco, there sit two cats. They are not just ordinary cats but fairytale characters from the book Glacella’s Secret and Sorcery. Our feline heroes travel back in time, exploring the history of Kłodzko, meeting famous people and taking part in major historical events. Walking down Daszyńskiego Street we reach Sybiraków Park where we come across two more cats perching on the wall of a local community school – the student cat sitting at the entrance and the beggar cat further back at Zawiszy Czarnego Street. From here we continue up towards a huge Gothic church. Surprisingly, instead of climbing the stairs we begin our descent into Kłodzko’s Underground Tourist Trail (The Millennium of Poland Underground Tourist Trail in Kłodzko).

Throughout the ages, the people of Kłodzko dug several layers of subterranean passages extending across the entire old town. The underground passages performed the role of a storehouse and a cold store for perishable foods, beverages (e.g. beer), merchandise and other precious goods. They also provided shelter in times of war. Walking through the historic tunnels is an opportunity to see and hear what the life of old townsmen might look like. We can also meet other inhabitants of this underground world running around our feet.

The underground trail leads us up to the foot of Kłodzko fortress, the town’s biggest tourist attraction. It was built in the 17th century, at the site where the residence of former local rulers once stood. Kłodzko Fortress is a spectacular sight with thick stone walls and viewing terraces overlooking the entire town and, if the weather allows, the surrounding areas and distant mountain ranges. Visiting the fortress you can learn some mysterious names such as castle keep, ravelin, bastion or casemate. You will also hear stories from famous prisoners, some of whom were able to escape from captivity. One of them was a clever French captain by the name of Karol Lux. The story goes that he bribed the guard to serve his food with lots of lemon juice and pepper. Using the juice as invisible ink he wrote to his brother who deciphered the note by warming the paper over the flame of a candle.

In one of his letters he asked his brother to smuggle a small file hidden in a book cover. Using the file, Karol sawed through the bars, climbed over the walls of the fortress and fled on a train. And the pepper? He used it to throw the dogs off his trail.

Children over 5 years of age can explore the underground countermine galleries and find out what they were used for. Just remember that the temperature in the underground tourist trail and corridors is about 8-10˚C all year round so make sure to dress warm before entering the tunnels even on a summer day.

If you are still ready for more sightseeing and attractions, continue your walk down the old town of Kłodzko, visit the Museum of the Kłodzko Region, see the scale model of historical Kłodzko or take a gondola cruise on the Młynówka River.