The Old Town of Warsaw was completely destroyed by German troops during World War II. After the war the historic center was faithfully restored until 1955. Since 1980 the Old Town of Warsaw is a World Heritage Site.
The Zamkowy square is the entrance to the Old Town (Stare Miasto). The King's castle is on the eastern side of the square. On the square stands the "Zygmunt's Column", which is Sigismund III of Vasa, king of Poland and Lithuania, who made Warsaw to the capital of his Kingdom in 1596.
The palace was built for Prince Lubomirski in the 17th century, by court architect Tylman van Gameren. In 1795, the palace was rebuilt by the Italian architect Domenico Merlini in the classical style. King Stanislaus II and August Poniatowski used the palace as their residence.
The barbican cannon battalion, served for the defense of the city gates. Parts of the Warsaw old town fortifications are still preserved or have been rebuilt after WW2. The Barbican in Warsaw was built in 1548.
The "Saint Casimir Church", also called the Sacramentary Monastery, was a royal residence. Queen Maria Kazimira Sobieska bought the property and turned it into a church. During the war against the German occupation in WW2, it served as a hospital for insurgents.
The "Palace of Culture" was built in 1955 as a gift from Joseph Stalin, the dictator of the USSR. The Stalinist Palace is 187 meters high, with tip 237 m. Russian architect Lew Rudniew designed the socialistic skyscraper. A very nice building that was declared a national monument. The "Palace of Culture" became a symbol of Warsaw.