From 04/03/2019 – 10/03/2019, a 16-member group of Irish policemen (Garda) – those in active service and those already retired – visited Podhale.
The visit took place within the framework of cooperation with the International Police Association IPA Nowy Targ Region and IPA Ireland. The Irish came to us for a few days from Irish towns such as Cork, Balbriggan, Dublin, Ennis.
In the programme of the visit, meticulously planned by the head of the group Ann Liston – the National Travel Officer Section Ireland – and Mateusz Kapołka IPA Section Poland, there were excursions, meetings and active recreation on skis.
On the day of arrival at the Pope John Paul II Airport Krakow Balice the guests were welcomed by a representative of our Region – Paweł.
At Willa Joanna Pension /http://www.pokoje-joanna.pl/ / in Białka Tatrzańska guests were greeted by Mateusz and Piotr. Location in close proximity (300 meters -5 min on foot) from the ski station – Kotelnica Białczańska and Termy Białka (thermal baths), as well as great guest service is a serious asset of the guest house.
After exchanging hugs, warm welcome and getting to know each other, the planned stay programme was analyzed and the Irish were not given a break from the morning of the next day. On Tuesday after breakfast, the guests left for Wieliczka, where they had the opportunity to visit the tourist route – the main route of the salt mine: beautiful chambers, underground lakes, majestic carpentry structures and unique salt sculptures. Nearly 3 kilometers of winding corridors, 800 steps to overcome and descent to a depth of 135 meters below ground. Then a short trip to Krakow, and a stroll through the old town: St. Mary’s Church, dinner and continuation of sightseeing in the capital of Lesser Poland. The program of the trip included: the armory and the Wawel cathedral. On Wednesday our guests visited Wadowice: the city of birth and the years of youth of Karol Wojtyła – Pope John Paul II. The sightseeing program included the Basilica of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, where Karol Wojtyła received baptism on June 20, 1920, and then the First Holy Communion, living right next to the temple. Since 2006 in front of the basilica there is a statue of John Paul II, a Marcin Wadowita High School, in which in 1930-1938 the Polish Pope was studying. In the busy schedule of the trip, there was a moment to taste the famous papal cream cakes. Before noon, a trip to Oświęcim, where our guests met with an educator and began visiting the Auschwitz memorial site in Oświęcim including Birkenau (in Polish Brzezinka).
After this short tour of the Lesser Poland region from March 7, our Irish guests began the main purpose of the visit in Poland, namely intensive training and skiing. Not far from the guesthouse, from 9 am until the closure of the Kotelnica Białczańska station, policemen honed their ski skills under the supervision of our friend – instructor Piotr. Beautiful weather and great conditions for skiing gave a lot of joy and unforgettable moments (police officers in Ireland do not often see snow).
On Friday, thanks to the commitment of Mateusz and Robert, the Irish delegation met with the leadership of Nowy Targ district police HQ. The meeting, albeit brief, was filled with a discussion concerning, first of all, pointing out differences in the functioning of the police in Poland and Ireland. The policemen became acquainted with the structure of the Nowy Targ headquarters.
At the end of the visit on Saturday, our guests witnessed the charity “for Asia” hockey match played on the ice rink in Czarny Dunajec between IPA Nowy Targ and IPA Poprad from Slovakia.
Thanks to colleagues from Ireland for a nice time. Ann Liston, John Liston, Mary O’Connell, Thomas O’Connell, Maeve Ward, Darren Martin, Senan Behan, Fiona Somers, Andy McVey, Aidan O’Connell, Margo O’Connell, Margaret Purcell, Tom Mc Evoy, Sheila Cole , Catherine Geoghegan-Quinn, Helena McCabe – see you !!
We would like to thank you for help in organizing the stay of guests from Ireland to all who actively helped in the organization and implementation of this not easy project, especially the owner of B.T. NELTRAVEL / http://neltravel.pl//