The Pomorskie Trail of Saint James - section from Lebork to Slupsk.
St. James trails are pilgrimage routes that have already developed in the Middle Ages. Their destination is the tomb of St. James the Elder, an apostle of Jesus Christ, located in Santiago de Compostela, Spain. The first pilgrimages to the tomb of the apostle began in the IXth century.
All James’ routes are marked with a characteristic yellow shell on a blue background. Pomorskie Trail of St. James is a total of over 700 km of the trail starting in Mamonow on the Polish-Russian border and ending in Swinoujscie on the border with Germany.
Pilgrims mostly treat it as a hiking trail and travel on foot.
This time we want to offer you to cover a section of the road marked with James’s shells on a bike. As a proposal, we chose the section from Lebork to Slupsk. The Pomorskie Trail of Saint James on a bike… Sounds interesting?
The beginning of the route…
…is the railway station in Lebork. Lebork is a city with medieval roots, where the cult of St. James accompanies the city from the very beginning of the location of the town on the Leba River. Already in 1341, the construction of the temple of St. James the Elder.
It is in Lebork that birthday celebrations go far beyond the walls of the church. The tradition of celebrating James’s Day in Lebork refers to the traditional medieval fairs organized by local merchants and craftsmen. These are days full of local tourist attractions that can be combined with spiritual experiences.
From Lebork, the trail will lead along a newly built bicycle road to Leba, where there is the youngest parish in Poland, St. James. In Leba, the James’s trail is also connected with the EuroVelo 10/13 seaside bicycle route, which is part of the EuroVelo network of international bicycle routes. The EV 10/13 route runs through all the Baltic states and encircles the entire Baltic Sea. The trail from Leba leads along the shores of Lebsko Lake through the naturally rich areas of the Slowinski National Park, whose peculiar fauna and flora is worth getting to know up close. Therefore, it is worth staying longer in Leba or its vicinity. It is worth going for a hike on the shifting dunes or visiting the open-air museum of the Slowinska village in Kluki, located a bit off the route. The best way to get to Kluki is by taking a local road in the direction of village Smolinsky Las and Lokciowe. We return to Smoldzino along the same road and continue along the trail.
Another place worth visiting on the route is the sacred mountain of Slovinians – Rowokoł in Smoldzino. This post-glacial hill rises over 114 m above sea level.
From the observation tower on its top, there is a wonderful panorama of the surrounding areas.
The next stage of the cycling journey…
…along the Pomorskie Trail of St. James is a route leading along the shores of Lake Gardno to the seaside town of Rowy, from where the trail hidden in the coastal forest belt will lead to Ustka. The sun, the nearby beach and the seaside breeze allow pilgrims to take a break along this section of the trail. Due to its location, Ustka was one of the most important fishing centres on the Polish coast. Currently, the status of a health resort is a definite asset of the city. Moving along the streets of Ustka, it is worth paying attention to the preserved architecture of fishermen’s houses and the lighthouse.
… of the proposed trip along the trail of St. James will lead along the entire length of the Slupia River valley towards the buildings of Slupsk. Along the way, it is worth visiting the Dolina Charlotty hotel complex with an amphitheatre, which is an important attraction of this region. The history of the stronghold in the fork of the Slupia River dates back to the Bronze Age and its rich history makes Slupsk an important element of the history of the entire Pomorskie region. Therefore, it is also worth spending more time here and getting to know Slupsk better. The remains of the defensive walls, the historic town hall, restored tenement houses are a kind of architectural pearls testifying to its cultural and historical richness.
The tour ends at the Slupsk railway station, from where you can return to the starting point of the tour.