Poland: Tykocin

The town of Tykocin is located in the far eastern Poland, and most (if not all) tourist routes skip it. And it’s a shame – the small down has a lot of history and quite a few things to see. Tykocin was founded in the 11th century and was one of the major towns during the times of the Great Duchy of Lithuania and Kingdom of Poland. It changed hands multiple times, was attacked by Sweden from the north and Russia from the east. The beautiful red-brick Tykocin Castle outside of town dates to 1469 (don’t miss all the humongous snails here!). It was in Tykocin in 1705, when King Augustus II the Strong established the highest and oldest Polish religious order – the Order of White Eagle. Besides the order, the king built out most of Tykocin center and many of the architectural attractions date to 1700s – baroque Church of the Holy Trinity, Bernardine Monastery, and the Tykocin Synagogue.