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My trip to Vistula Mouth Fortress

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During this year's holiday, I visited some places I think might be of interest to some fans of LEGO Pirates. I wish to show some of them to you, one place at a time. The first thing I wish to show you is the Vistula Mouth Fortress (in Polish - Twierdza Wisloujscie), located in Gdansk (or Danzig), Poland.

General view of the fortress:


The fortress was built in 1482 and has undergone numerous attacks throughout its history, hence its various parts were frequently rebuilt, resulting in the current mixture of styles, materials and building techniques from different centuries. The central tower served as a lighthouse until 1758. The fortress' function was to protect the sea port in Gdansk as well as to control the traffic on Vistula river, including collecting toll from the passing ships and so on.

The fortress was attacked in 1577 by Polish king Stefan Batory during the Danzig rebellion, it served as a backup for Polish ships during the Polish-Swedish Battle of Oliva, was attacked by Russians and Saxons during the War of the Polish Succession, by Prussians in 1793 and in 1814 and by Napoleon in 1807. In the years 1622-1629 it served as a base for Polish fleet, in 1628 two ships stationed there were sunk during the attack of the Swedish artillery.

The whole complex is surrounded by Vistula river from the western side and by the so called Eastern Sconce from all the other sides. The only way to enter the Eastern Sconce is by the drawbridge, which is now sadly only a reconstruction of the original bridge:


Here we are in the Eastern Sconce, on the road leading to the fortress itself:


And now we finally see the fortress:


The road from the Eastern Sconce to the fortress leads through another bridge, seen below. So the fortress is a bit like an island within a bigger island (= the sconce).


Here we are on the bridge, looking right...


...and left.


We pass through a short tunnel to the courtyard.


And we see the main part of the fortress. The fortress is currently being renovated, which sadly means that some of its parts were inaccessible during my trip. You may also occasionally see some tools, planks and that kind of stuff lying around on some of the pictures below.


The houses which form a circle around the tower is where the officers used to live.



Here's the inside of one of such houses, showing what was once officer's quarters. At some point in the fortress' history, they were even allowed to live there with their families.



Outside of the cetral ring of officers' houses, we see barracks where low rank soldiers lived. At least they had Carlsberg beer: :pir_laugh2:


Wait, some of the soldiers are still here:



Entering the barracks (no, this guy isn't me, I'm the one with the camera :pir_laugh2: ):



The inside of the barracks. The soldiers slept on the floor, on hay, next to each other. No one cared too much about hygiene during those days, and lice and diseases were not uncommon. It is said that the safest place to sleep was next to a soldier with a venereal disease - at least he couldn't infect you. Or could he?


I wonder what this guy caught:


Now we're going back to the central structure:


We see a portal with a coat of arms above it:


An entrance to a postern, sadly currently inaccessible for viewing due to renovation:


The inside of yet another chamber in the central structure. The rails were mounted in the 19th century, for easier transport of ammunition which was stored somewhere inside:



On this picture you can see how thick the ceiling is:


You can see the date 1586 over here:



Outside of the chamber - this is where the cannons defending the fortress were stationed. Did I mention the renovation?


And now the very central part with the tower. Unfortunately, because of the renovation the tower is currently off-limits, so just a few pictures taken from the outside of it:



You can see gunports on the upper level of the circular structure:


That's it. I hope you enjoyed it. Now all we have to do is MOC it. :pir-tongue:

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Seems like they still have to renovate a lot, but it's a very nice fortress.

And great pictures, if I ever want to build a fort, this could be a good example.

Thanks for the images!

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I believe you had an amazing time wandering through the old fortress Dreamweb! It must be an interesting place with a rich history. Unfortunately they were renovating the structures at the time you passed by but the longer this fortress is being preserved the better!

Thanks for those images, it was great to look at! :pir-classic:

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Thank you Dreamweb for showing this great fortress to us! I am happy that fortresses and castles are being renovated today in Poland. There were lost of castles and buildings with fundamental historical value in Poland that were destroyed and damaged by various invaders. Today they should be reconstucted and renovated so people could see the golden age of Poland, the Rzeczypospolita!

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I'm definitely going to return there some time in the future, after all the work is done and people can admire the fortress in its full glory. I had no idea the site would be undergoing renovation and I must admit I was a bit disappointed, but of course I'm aware that such things have to be done, considering how many times the fortress has been under attack (the last time was during World War II) and how old it is. So I may be back with better pictures one day! :pir-classic:

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This is a very good and insightful pictorial review of Visutla Mouth Fortress.

Thank you for taking the time to share your photos Dreamweb.

Just wondering about the soldiers - the one on our left looks Dutch while the one on the right looks French. Is that assumption remotely accurate?


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