Lower Silesian Voivodeship, or Lower Silesia Province, in southwestern Poland, is one of the 16 voivodeships into which Poland is divided. Historically the area had strong ties to both German and Polish culture, with additional Czech influence in the southern mountainous region.
Silesia was once divided into many small duchies reigned by dukes and princes of the Piast dynasty. During this time, cultural and ethnic Germanic influence prospered due to immigrants from the German-speaking areas of the mighty Holy Roman Empire. This also impacted on the local architecture as well as traditions and cuisine. Throughout the upcoming centuries, Lower Silesia experienced several key events such as the Protestant Reformation, the Silesian Wars, Industrialisation and eventually both World Wars.
Lower Silesia is one of the richest provinces in Poland as it has valuable natural resources such as copper, brown coal and rock materials, which are exploited by the biggest enterprises. Its well developed and varied industries attract both domestic and foreign investors.
Its capital and largest city is Wrocław, situated on the Odra River. It is one of Polands largest and most dynamic cities with a rapidly growing international profile, and is regarded as one of the most important commercial, educational and tourist sites in the whole country. Furthermore, the voivodeship is famous for its many castles and palaces and is one of Polands most visited regions by tourists.
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