Information about the city Gubin

Tourists visiting eastern parts of Germany are offered interesting cross-border experience:

Polish-German twin city Guben-Gubin is building bridges between countries and nations, between the past and the present. For years the Neisse river was a border line. Today it marks a blue ribbon on both sides of which Guben and Gubin are getting closer to each other again.

The town upon the Neisse river is one of the oldest towns in Lower Lusatia. The first reference about the town dates back to 1211 and concerns salt trade. City rights were granted to Guben following the Magdeburg example on June 1st, 1235 by Henry II Margrave of Meissen and Lusatia from the House of Wettin.

The town expanded to include the market square with the Main Parish Church and the Town Hall covering the area of approximately 25 hectares. From the North and East the town was naturally bordered and protected by the Lubsza river, from the South by the Werderfließ stream and on the West by the river Neisse. As early as in the 14th century the citizens of Guben grew grapevines. Until the 19th century the town had developed to be a significant industrial and gardening hub.

Industrial revolution started in Guben in the years 1816-17 which was marked by setting up the Cockerill’s weaving plant and installing, quite early, the first steam engine in Lower Lusatia which happened in 1818. Brown coal mining in eastern parts of the town which began in 1848 and joining the railway network in 1846 accelerated the process of industrialization and transformed Guben into the biggest centre of textile industry, especially hat manufacture, in Lower Lusatia.

In the last three decades of the 19th century and in the beginning of the 20th century the town gained numerous buildings and institutions, such as, for example junior high school (1868), the Town Theatre (1874), cloister school (1875), Naemi Wilke Foundation (1878), the Brandeburg Facility for the Deaf (1881), water supply system company (1879), Pestalozzi school (1902), secondary grammar school (1908), Hindenburg school (1912), the Town Museum (1913), Koenig Park (1904), the Town House and a new big bridge over he Neisse (1922/23) and a new Northern Bridge ( 1924).

The start and fall of hat manufacture in Guben as well as the whole history of the town and the industry is displayed in the Town and Industry Museum located in the former Wilke's hat factory in Gasstraße.

In the end of World War II the town and especially its centre was nearly completely destroyed. The Potsdam Agreement fixed the separation of the town into two parts, the German Guben and the Polish Gubin. Two third of the territory –the eastern part including the historical centre and the Krosno suburbs and Werdawa suburbs are now on the Polish side.

The old Town Hall, the ruins of the Main Parish Church, the remains of the town fortifications including the so called “Thick Tower” in the present Gubin certify the changing fate of this noble Lower Lusatian town. Today Guben is a colourful twin town. Its renovation and improvement is continuing with great success. Tourists visiting the town upon the Neisse river are positively surprised with the changes noticed in the centre of Guben.

The renovated main streets of the town are filled with lush green, the building of the former Wilke’s hat factory is the home of a modern municipal services centre including the Municipal Office, library, music school and the Old Dye Work, performance hall, etc.

Citizens are especially proud of the bicycle paths leading to the town attractive settings, to picturesque lakes and the surroundings with beautiful landscapes.

The town specific attraction is the Neisse itself where you can take a boat cruise. On both sides of the river you can find piers and slips for boat launching. The river banks are also getting more attractive. Recently, the visitors of the Polish-German town have been offered a new attraction, namely a completely refurbished Old Harbour Guben, which invites tourists to have a rest directly near the Oder-Neisse cycling path.