7 June 2017


Muranow is a must see when you visit Warsaw. Walking around the neighborhood, that rose like a phoenix from the ashes on the rubble of The Warsaw Ghetto, makes you understand the identity of this city. Warsaw fragmented by war started consolidating in a new form from different, often incongruous elements.

The southern part of Muranow, designed by the famous modernist architect Bohdan Lachert creates the world’s only settlement-monument. It is towering over the area since it was built on rubble terraces. To get here one must overcome barriers made of stairs and archways use your imagination and explore. You will discover small alleys, hidden courtyards and secret passages, walls overgrown with ivy all hidden intramural. Inside you can still spot drying laundry and elders chatting on benches. You get a sense a small town while being in the middle of a big city. Muranow was designed in the spirit of social housing so inside the residents find every city necessity.

World War II destroyed the historical continuity of Muranow. Before known as the North District, Muranow was a vibrant neighborhood full of life. People talking in Yiddish, Polish, Hebrew, Russian, sometimes German and in Esperanto (an international language that was born here) made up it’s community. Today’s community, the people living here for years, as well as those who moved here recently, make up for Muranow’s identity. What unites them is the fact that they all feel strongly about this part of Warsaw, often stating it’s importance to them.

For it is better to be in a place that has character, whether it be irritating, silly, moving, provocative, or even spooky, then to be in a place that is bland.