Medieval castle called Bakowiec in Morsko is a typical example of watchtower and fortress of Jura’s Eagles’ Nests’ Trail.
Built during the XIV century, it was from the very beginning wonderful match to the surrounding limestone rocks. Even today it is really difficult to understand where exactly the natural rock finishes and the human piece of work starts… By the way – the rock on which the castle was constructed is called Tygrys -“the Tiger” – by the locals…
We do not know exactly when and by who the castle was built. Probably, like most of the fortresses in Polish Jura, its construction was ordered by the king Wladyslaw Lokietek or his son Casimir the Great. Some historians suggest that it might have been built by the prince Wladyslaw Opolczyk, a powerful nobleman who was for the few years during the XIV century, the owner of this area.
There is also a legend that says, that during the XIII century on the same hill where we can see the ruins of the castle now, there was a wooden fortress erected and used by the group of knights-marauders from Toporczyk family. They were constantly attacking and robbing merchants heading to Cracow. According to that legend, the king Wladyslaw Lokietek reclaimed the castle as well as the land surrounding it and gave them over to Monastery of Canons Regulars in Mstow.
This legend might be connected with the other story that locals are keeping telling from generations; the legend of Avenger from Okiennik Wielki Rock. You can find this story here.
During Middle Ages, the castle was called Bakowiec or Bakowecz / Bancowecz. Morsko is its modern label taken from the name of the nearby village.
During XIV, XV, and XVI century the owners of the castle were changing constantly. Maybe that is why this beautiful and strategically positioned fortress was never rebuilt to be a renaissance residence… It always simply served the purpose of watchtower and knights’ premises.
As we do not know when exactly the castle was erected, we are also not sure when it was destroyed, abandoned. It was probably at the beginning of the XVII century when the owners were the Heppen family.
In 1927 the ruins with the land around were purchased by a well-known Polish architect from Cracow. Mr. Witold Danielewicz Czeczott who designed and constructed his villa within the castle’s walls. Well, I would say that that was not the best idea, but I can guess the tastes and ideas of protecting national monuments were very different a hundred years ago from how they are now…
If you decide to visit Morsko you may develop your own opinion about the villa – and of course – do not forget to let me know it!
Today nearby the castle there is a leisure and conference center called Morsko Plus; with hotel, restaurants, swimming pool, tennis courts, playground for kids, horse stud, and even slop with ski lift for skiing amateurs to be used in winter!
Apart from the ruins, there are plenty of other attractions near to Morsko; wonderful trekking routes, picturesque limestone rocks to climb in the area, bicycle trails, etc… There are also many interesting legends to grab, like for example the one about fiddler on the rock…