Zamosc was founded in the 16th century by the chancellor Jan Zamoysky on the trade route linking western and northern Europe with the Black Sea. The city was based on Italian ideology and built by the architect Bernando Morando. Many buildings thus combine Italian and central European architectural traditions. The city is a perfect example of a late-16th-century Renaissance town. It has retained its original layout and old fortifications.
The self-proclaimed ‘Pearl of the Renaissance’ and the ‘Padua of the North’. Zamosc is a UNESCO World Heritage List site. Not many cities have been included on the list as a whole – but Zamosc is one of them. Roztocze is nearby. It is a range of hills that rises from the Lublin Upland and extends southeastward through the Solska Wilderness and across the border into the Ukrainian Podolia. It is very picturesque and hosts events both on a regional and an international scale.
The Rynek is in the heart of the city. It is the main meeting place and one of the most magnificent 16th century squares in Europe. The massive Town Hall dominates the Rynek. It has a 52-m tower and a monumental fan-shaped double stairway dating back to the second half of the 18th century. The Rynek also has some beautiful and the well-preserved Armenian tenement houses. The city has many other important sights including: • The Cathedral – This is one of the most magnificent Polish temples. It was designed by Bernardo Morando and founded by Jan Zamoyski • Rotunda Zamojska – the Museum of Martyrdom – do not miss the chance to see it, especially the little chapel • The fortress was built between 1579 and 1618. It was one of the biggest fortresses of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Some of it was taken down in 1866 and nowadays, only fragments survive.