South-West Cistercian Trail in Małopolska
The unique heritage of the Cistercian Order, established in the late 11th century in France, unites almost entire Europe. The monasteries of the “white monks” looked similar everywhere, and the Cistercians brought with them cultural patterns and civilization achievements, while propagating not only faith but also general European culture. Therefore, all the former and current abbeys of the Cistercian Order are encompassed by the European Cistercian Trail. The South- West Cistercian Trail, encompassing four voivodships, including Małopolska, is part of the European Trail. The Małopolska branch of the trail includes not only monasteries, such as the abbeys in Mogiła and Szczyrzyc, but also other sacred monuments associated with the Cistercians, such as the Sanctuary of Our Lady the Queen of Podhale in Ludźmierz, which in the 13th century housed a Cistercian Monastery. The monuments encompassed by the trail are marked with information boards, equipped in parking lots and information booths.