Narewka, Siemianówka and surroundings

Narewka

Narewka is a place where life seems to slow down. Peaceful streets with many traditional wooden houses, vicinity of nature and friendly people – all these create unique atmosphere. Narewka river flows through the settlement and plays an important role in local landscape and consciousness. There is a bathing site in the village. It is also possible to rent kayaks and to take a trip down the picturesque and wild river valley.

Narewka has an interesting history. The village grew around a 17th century’s manufacture producing iron from bog iron. In 1777 king Stanisław August founded a Catholic church here. Unfortunately, it did not survive to our times, and was replaced by a new one of quite modern architecture. In 1794 an Orthodox church was built. The present St. Nicolas chuch was built in 1864. After partitions of Poland Narewka became a part of the Russian Empire. At the beginning of the 19th century Russians endowed it with municipal rights. Glassworks was opened. Many Jews settled in Narewka. They constituted more than half of the local inhabitants. A synagogue was established.  During World War II, in 1941, about 300 local Jews were shot by German soldiers in the wood near Zabłotczyzna (a nearby village). There is a grave nowadays on that site. On the outskirts of Narewka, by the road to Olchówka, on a little wooded hill, there is a Jewish cemetery, dating back to the 19th century. About 20 surviving graves with Hebrew inscriptions bear witness to existence of a culture that was so vital here but vanished completely from the local landscape. The cemetery in Narewka is the best preserved one in the region.

The region of Narewka is excellent for cyclists. Beautiful views, vicinity of the forest with its reserves and National Park, and easy access to Siemianówka Lake ensure wonderful impressions.

It is good to remember that in Narewka there is a health care centre, pharmacy, a few shops and a bus stop (by the River), as well as hotels, restaurants and guesthouses.

 

Gruszki

It is a small village where Browsk Forest Inspectorate’s headquarters is located. Not far from the headquarters’ building there is an observation tower overlooking Narewka River’s valley. Behind the village there is also a very spectacular view of the valley and a little bridge over the river. By the river it is possible to see beavers’ activity – dug out banks and felled trees. Sometimes, with some luck, a kingfisher can be spotted flying over the water. Bisons often graze in the meadows in the valley.

Guszczewina and Olchówka

The villages preserved traditional spacial lay-out. Surrounded by meadows with the forest in the background, they are typical examples of local settlements. In winter bisons can be often seen near Olchówka, as they gather there by hay stacks in the fields.

Babia Góra, Pasieki, Siemieniakowszczyzna

The villages are located off the main road, as if hidden from common sight. They are surrounded by picturesque meadows and the forest (near Babia Góra the view in the background is of Siemianówka Reserve). Honey may be bought here. Pace can be slowed down in the middle of beautiful nowhere.

Siemianówka Lake and an observation tower are not far from here.

Lewkowo

An old village by Narewka River. The first written notice of an Orthodox church here comes from the 17th century. The church did not survive to our times and another one was built in the 18th century. The village boasts with a locally famous traditional music band. Behind the village there is nice panorama of Narewka River. In spring the valley is usually flooded and attracts birds, some of them rare.

Masiewo

It is impossible to go any further than Masiewo, as this is the place where road comes to an end, limited by two borders: of the National Park and of Poland. The village was founded in the 17th century. Potash was produced here and the village was bigger and more lively than nowadays. During the war period Masiewo was destroyed and numerous inhabitants were made to leave. Interestingly, former parish church and cemetery are at present in a village on the other side of the border – in Belarus. In the forest just behind Masiewo there is an old Evangelical cemetery – a trace of German settlers from the 19th century. The village preserved a lot of old-time charm.

Siemianówka

A big village located directly by Siemianówka Lake. It dates back to the beginning of the 17th century, when it was set up in the fork of Narew and Narewka rivers. In the village there is a historic St. George Orthodox church from the 18th century.

 Embankments visible from the village mark the borderline of Siemianówka Lake. The lake was created in 1977-1990 in the upper stream of Narew and is one of the biggest reservoirs of this kind in Poland. It is very popular among anglers, ornithologists and holiday-makers who enjoy wildlife. Each year since 2002 “Akcja Siemianówka”, an ornithological bird ringing camp, takes place here. The camp is pitched in the northern part of the lake, in the direction of Cisówka. Ornithologists from all over Poland as well as from abroad come to take part in it.

przystań

Słobódka

The village is located in the vicinity of Siemianówka Lake, yet, slightly aside, by a road that leads to nowhere else but Słobódka. Village houses and yards border on the river, which may make an impression of remoteness, isolation and, undoubtedly, charm. Right next to Słobódka there are small dunes covered with juniper.


Europejski Fundusz Rolny na rzecz Rozwoju Obszarów Wiejskich. Europa inwestująca w obszary wiejskie. Projekt współfinansowany ze środków Unii Europejskiej w ramach osi 4 Leader. Program Rozwoju Obszarów Wiejskich na lata 2007-2013. Projekt zrealizowany przez Stowarzyszenie Metamorphosis. Instytucja zarządzająca Programem Rozwoju Obszarów Wiejskich na lata 2007-13 Minister Rolnictwa i Rozwoju Wsi