Amber Route

Although sparsely populated in the ancient times, Polish lands maintained lively trade relations with many European regions. That was due to those lands’ location as well as to their highly valued and wanted products. One of them was amber, plentiful on the southern Baltic coast. An important trade link known as the amber route existed already in the bronze age, leading from the Mediterranean Sea via today’s Vienna and on through the K³odzko Basin or the Moravian Gate to the Polish lands; it then passed near Kalisz and continued along the right Vistula bank towards the Baltic Sea. Merchants brought here different articles and trinkets made of bronze to exchange them for amber, salt and furs. Soon new trade routes were established, running from Italy and Greece via Danube lands and Carpathian passes, but the amber route retained its important position. The city of Kalisz has the oldest historical record in Poland - under the name of Calisia it was entered by Ptolemy into his work written in the 2nd century A.D.

The amber route still exists, but it is quite different from what it used to be. Now, it is the name of a tour designed for tourists visiting Pomerania, and especially the area of Gdansk. Various trips take them along the trail connected with the amber heritage. They usually include Gdansk, Elblag, Malbork, and Jantar near Stegna, where the annual World Championship in Fishing Amber is organised.