For long centuries Warsaw has been the secondary city in Poland, while Krakow has been the capital of the state. In those times Warsaw was the center of Mazovian duchy. It was the beginning of the 13th century and the rulers of the duchy started to build a kind of fortification on the banks of the Vistula river. One hundred years later there had already been a castle and the main residence of the Duke Bolesław II.
The Royal palace was the very heart of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth. The period was not peaceful and the building has been robbed, damaged and rebuilt several times. However, the Germans were those who hurt the Palace the most. During the World War II the Nazi mined that Royal residence and finally destroyed it.
The bank of the river has stayed empty till 1971. In that year the local authorities decided to restore the building in its original form. The works lasted for 17 years, giving us now the possibility to see the Palace the way it looked like in the 18th century.
At the present time the Royal Palace of Warsaw serves like a museum. From the outside the building does not look gorgeous and suitable for kings, but the interior is really magnificent. One can see the Throne-room, the Oval room, the Council room, Marble Hall and the Hall of Knights. There is also an exposition of carpets and coins, the clocks, candlesticks, furniture, porcelain and ceramics. The exhibition of paintings is worth special attention. You can walk there for hours admiring the spirit of the epoch, portraits and landscapes of the city. History admirers will be pleased to see the ancient documents, royal decrees, archives and even photos. The entrance price is 22 PLN.