Łódź (Pronounced: Wootch) is Poland's third biggest city, and the capital of the Łódzkie Voivodship. Unlike most other large Polish cities, which have long histories, Łódź was created almost from scratch during the 19th-century textile industry boom to house textile mills, their owners and their workers, and rapidly grew to become an important industrial and commerce centre. Since the end of the Soviet era, the textile industry split into many smaller companies, which often specialize in technically complex products such as lingerie and wedding dresses. The city rebounded in the 21st century due to foreign investment in IT industries.
Owing to its history, Łódź has an impressive collection of residential, commercial and industrial 19th-century architecture including some of Europe's largest factory buildings, now mostly repurposed as shopping centres or lofts. Local investment and a long-standing cultural scene ensures there is always something more to do than just sightseeing or shopping, with the city hosting some of the best museums and art galleries in the country. The close proximity of Warsaw and Łódź's location at the crossroads of the Polish motorway system make it an ideal destination for a day trip or longer city break.
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