Floods in Krakow over the centuries

Natural disaster ravages the world from its beginning, so it did not omit the Krakow. It suffered from floods till the first years of formation. We should not be surprised – the river flowing by the central part of the city is the biggest in Poland. City of Kings survived over 80 floods, including 13 disastrous.

In Krakow, we can find buildings with plaque informs about the height of water over the years (you can find one on Plac na Groblach). Until 1683, floods haunted Krakow regularly, when the government decided to enhance the Vistula banks.

Below you can find dates of some significant floods:

988 – first registered flood in Krakow, we can find mentions about it in chronicles;

1468 – the Vistula pours out its banks and floods Stradom. Chronicles noted that altars floated over the churches;

1534 – In Marcin Bielski “Chronicles” we can find description, that Vistula outpouring caused three bridges destruction;

1571 – Flood destroyed the dam on the Vistula and changed its flow, for the current one. Former riverbed had been covered in 1879;

1597 – Krakow has been haunted by floods seven times one year;

1671 – The lower part of Krakow has been flooded;

1813 – The most significant flood ever destroyed Krakow – Stradom, Kazimierz, Podgórze districts have been flooded, also, demolished two bridges. As a result, the government decided to build protective shafts along the Vistula.

1903 – Another dreadful flood – it destroyed the following districts: Błonia, part of the city centre, Dębniki, Zakrzówek, Ludwinów, Podgórze. It was an impulse to reinforce the protective walls and regulated the Rudawa flow.

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