Haunting images show the abandoned holiday resorts in Communist Poland

Haunting images show the abandoned Cold War holiday resorts in Communist Poland as they are today

  • Resorts built in Poland from the late 1950s onwards were left to dereliction after the collapse of Communism
  • Urban photographer Marcin Wojdak, from Kielce, Poland, is seeking to preserve their memory through photos
  • One picture reveals the remains of a bowling alley, which would have been luxury during the Communist era

An urban photographer is seeking to preserve a piece of history with his haunting photos of abandoned Cold War holiday resorts in Communist Poland.  

Erected across Poland from the late 1950s onwards, the modernist structures were built as part of a socialist plan for all workers to have the ‘right to rest’.

Following the collapse of Communism across Europe at the end of the 1980s though, the resorts were left to fall into disrepair.

Now urbex photographer Marcin Wojdak from Kielce in Poland, who goes under his Instagram mantle of Cosmoderna, is looking to preserve their memory with his series of extraordinary photos.

An urban photographer is looking to preserve a piece of history with his haunting photos of abandoned Communist-era holiday resorts – including a derelict swimming pool covered in moss in 

In one, sunlight striking through the windows of a huge oval room with lights circling overhead reveals an abandoned dartboard overlooking a long-forgotten bar football table


The images show modernist structures that were built in Rudnie (left) and Hel (right) in Poland as part of a socialist plan for all workers to have the ‘right to rest’

In one, sunlight striking through the windows of a huge oval room with lights circling overhead reveals an abandoned dartboard overlooking a long-forgotten bar football table.

Next to it is what appears to be a former stage, now littered with old boxes. Another shows a couple of armchairs around a coffee table with two old mugs and a radio.

A patterned carpet leads to a floral settee behind which a child’s large teddy bear can be seen looking out of the window and into a lush forest.

Wojdak told The First News website: ‘A large proportion of these centres were built in really beautiful places – along the shores of lakes, right up against the seaside or high up in the mountains.

‘Nowadays, it would be really difficult to obtain approval to build in such locations, so I think there is a sense that you’re visiting a completely different world when you see these places.’

The remains of a mosaic, part of a Polish Communist-era spa, built in the 1950s and abandoned to dereliction following the collapse of the USSR


Other photos reveal the remains of an old bowling alley, (left) which would have been considered a luxury during the Communist era, a derelict room with broken furniture and faded pictures of Smurfs on the wall (right) in Łódź Voivodeship

A patterned carpet leads to a floral settee behind which a child’s large teddy bear can be seen looking out of the window and into a lush forest in central Poland

Other photos reveal the remains of an old bowling alley, which would have been considered a luxury during the Communist era, a derelict room with broken furniture and faded pictures of Smurfs on the wall, and the crumbling remains of an old swimming pool.

Many of the abandoned rooms contain faded artwork on the walls which were intended to convey a sense of happiness and joy.

Wojdak said: ‘It’s the atmosphere of these that I find the most interesting. These are open-air museums of a former epoch, and for a system that pushed for a completely different set of values than the capitalism we have today.’

A sofa in a derelict room in this abandoned Polish resort where the only feature still intact appears to be a vibrant stain glass window featuring birds

Wojdak said: ‘A large proportion of these centres were built in really beautiful places – along the shores of lakes, right up against the seaside or high up in the mountain’

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