Cuiavian-Pomeranian voievodship (Polish: województwo kujawsko-pomorskie)  is one of 16 administrative units in Poland. Its capital city is Bydgoszcz, but provincial parliament (sejmik) is in Toruń.
Region comprises various historic and ethnic regions and offers many attractions for tourists.
Cuiavian-Pomeranian region contains several smaller ethnic or historic areas, that can be grouped into three bigger entities:
- Cuiavia in south and east of the region – with its fertile soils it is an agricultural heart of the region. You may find many intriguing towns and monuments here. Due to large salt deposits Ciechocinek and Inowrocław are major Polish spas. Bydgoszcz, by far the largest city in the region, is on the northernmost end of the land. Sometimes as Cuiavia is counted Dobrzyń Land north of Włocławek.
- Pomerania in the north of the region – here you’ll find nice towns, castles and nature. Discover UNESCO World Heritage city of Toruń, fell in love in Chełmno – Carcassonne of the north, rent a kayak, or find old yews in Bory Tucholskie area. Part east to the Vistula river is known as Chełmno Land.
- Greater Poland in the west – it is a small part of big historic land where Poland originated. Discover picturesque small towns and villages of Krajna and Pałuki subregions. Worth visit is especially Żnin area, where major attractions are connected by heritage narrow gauge train line.
Every region has complex and different story. South-western part was a heartland of young Polish principality in 10th century. Kruszwica and Włocławek were early local power centres. In 1228 Chełmno Land in the north was given as a fiefdom to Teutonic Knights. They came to help Polish princes to fight Pagan, Baltic Old Prussians, but fastly created a strong country that threatened divided Poland, Lithuania and other neighbours. Chełmno was the first capital city of this monastic state. Pomerania came back under Polish rule in 1466, and in the next centuries cities along Vistula river, like Włocławek, Nieszawa, Toruń, Bydgoszcz, Grudziądz thrived. The end of good times came with the bloody wars of 17th and 18th century. Due to the partitions of Poland in the late 18th century, northern and western parts of the region came under Prussian, and later German rule, while East (Dobrzyń Land and eastern Cuiavia) was ruled by Russia. Area became again a borderland. The situation caused large economic disproportions between both areas. The region was reunited with Poland again after the World War I. Toruń was the capital of the new Pomeranian voievodship. In 1938 administrative reform created new borders of the province that comprised all Polish Pomerania, nearly all Cuiavia and small neighbouring areas of other regions. After some changes that were made following the World War 2, due to the creation of Gdańsk region, the capital was moved to bigger Bydgoszcz. In 1975 next reform divided the voievodship into three smaller ones. The province was re-established in 1998.
Native language for virtually all inhabitants is Polish. English is widely understood by younger generations. Many people have some knowledge of German, eventually Russian.
You can fly to Bydgoszcz's Bydgoszcz Ignacy Jan Paderewski Airport (BZG). There are several flights to Germany and British Islands with Ryanair, and to Frankfurt with Lufthansa. You can use as well some airports in vicinity, like in Poznań, Gdańsk, Warsaw, or Łódź and take a train or bus.
Region is well connected by trains with all regions of Poland and there is one international train daily that goes to Berlin via Bydgoszcz and Inowrocław. For the details you may check the [timetables]
In every major city and town of the region there are bus stations. They are served by various bus companies that connect the region with the rest of Poland and majority of European countries. Often, buses go to the places where train travel is long or where are few trains.
Region has a relatively well developed public transportation system. In every city, and some towns, there are city buses, and in Bydgoszcz, Grudziądz and Toruń tramways as well. To every city and many towns and villages you can come by local trains that are cheap and have usually good quality. Local buses go virtually to every town and village, and often offer more connections than trains.
Because the terrain is flat you can rent a car as well. Often it will be the fastest way to get around, and many roads are in relatively good conditions. You should avoid rush hours in bigger cities though, and allways check if the parking place requires a ticket. Also, many drivers in Poland tend to be aggresive, so if you are inexperienced it may be a stressful experience.
One of the greatest ways to discover the area is by bike. There are many nice bike trails in the region, and you can allways take one of many minor local roads. Landscape is relatively flat, with hills usually smaller than 50m, what makes this form of travel relatively easy. It is often a good idea to take your bike by train, so you can make more interesting routes.
- Bydgoszcz — biggest city in the province, sometimes nicknamed Little Berlin because of the beautiful Art-Nouveau, Neo-Baroque and Eclecticist architecture from 19th and early 20th centuries.
- Torun — UNESCO World Heritage site. One of the best preserved gothic old towns in northern and central Europe. Brick gothic town hall and churches form a unique medieval panorama at the east Vistula shore. City has an important university and is known as a birthplace of Nicolaus Copernicus. Local gingerbreads, called katarzynki, are known in all Poland and are also a must.
- Włocławek — important industrial and cultural centre of the eastern Cuiavia and Dobrzyń Land. Large dam on Vistula river and a beautiful gothic cathedral.
- Grudziądz — Brick gothic old town at the Vistula River known for its picturesque granaries.
- Inowrocław — Major western Cuiavian city with intriguing romanesque church, popular spa and other nice sites.
- Bory Tucholskie — north-western forested area full of pure lakes, rivers and nature reserves. With little industry it offers many attractions to spend a time in the nature. Area is mainly famous for its kayaking possibilities.
- Brodnica and its surroundings — historic town surrounded by many lakes and forests in the north-eastern part of the province.
- Chełmno — called Carcassonne of the north is a picturesque gothic and renaissance town on hills. Due to relics of st. Valentine it is also called the city of lovers.
- Chełmża — small town on a lake with nice, gothic cathedral, one of the oldest gothic structures in northern Poland, that served as a model for many Pomeranian churches.
- Ciechocinek — spa at the Vistula River, one of the biggest in Poland. The town is famous for its flower gardens, salt and the biggest graduation towers in Europe. You can visit small picturesque towns of Nieszawa and Raciążek nearby.
- Cuiavian Megalithes — groups of megalithic tombs older than Stonehange in three villages near the tiny town of Izbica Kujawska – Gaj, Sarnowo and Wietrzychowice.
- Golub-Dobrzyń — discover a nice small town with an iconic gothic-renaissance castle.
- Kruszwica — small town on a Gopło lake, where thousand years old legends mix with history and nature.
- Mogilno — picturesque town in the south-west with one of the oldest monasteries in Poland.
- Pałuki Żnińskie area around the pictoresque town of Żnin with major attractions connected by heritage narrow gauge train line. See the prehistoric village in Biskupin, narrow gauge trains museum in Wenecja, or baroque wooden church in Gąsawa.
- Radzyń Chełmiński east from Grudziądz has one of the biggest castle ruins in northern Poland.
- Strzelno — jewel of Polish late romanesque art.
You can do many nice itineraries in the region. Some ideas:
- Go along Lower Vistula Valley from Bydgoszcz/Toruń to Nowe or Gniew (in Pomeranian voievodship). Vistula river was a major trade route of international importance for centuries and you can find many interesting sites along. Valley is flat and has steep slopes that offer many viewpoints. For example you can take the road 256 from Bydgoszcz to Trzęsacz and turn left to the road to Topolno (nice baroque church and a viewpoint), then continue to Chrystkowo (an old Mennonite house, small open air museum, possibility to camp or sleep in the house), Gruczno (open air museum), Świecie (gothic castle and some old churches). Here you can cross the river to Chełmno (Carcassonne of the east) and go back via Starogród (baroque church and a viewpoint), Unisław (small gothic church and a viewpoint) and Ostromecko (park and two palaces from 18th and 19th century). You can continue north as well and go to visit small town of Nowe, and picturesque old town of Grudziądz – both offer nice panoramas and have interesting old buildings. This extension may be too long for one day, depending on your travelling style. You can continue this trip further north into Pommeranian voievodship and visit more nice places, such as Pelplin, Gniew, Kwidzyn and Malbork. This trip is mainly on small roads with only local traffic, but be careful because on some sections there are cyclists.
Kujawsko-Pomorskie boarders five other Polish voivodships