In Skierniewice there is quite a treat for rail fans. The steam locomotive depot in Skierniewice is run by the Polish Association of Railway Enthusiasts, which makes the steam locomotive depot available to visit for free, while sharing a fair amount of knowledge about the place. Nothing but getting ready to go.
To begin with, perhaps a few words of explanation, because, after all, not everyone needs to know what a steam engine house is. It is a depot for steam locomotives, a place where they are not only stored but also repaired and maintained. Such steam locomotives include turntables, repair halls, warehouses, cranes, sand… Attention is attracted by the so-called. fans – when the hall building is built around a turntable. As you might guess, steam locomotives (because, of course, there was more than one!) are an extremely important part of Poland’s railroad history that allowed the country’s railroads to function properly.
In this post we will show you the steam locomotive depot in Skierniewice, in the Lodz Voivodeship.
The steam locomotive depot was built between 1845 and 1847 and for a long time was one of the most important steam locomotive repair and maintenance centers in the country. You can read the exact history of this place on this site, there is no point in duplicating the content, especially since there is really a lot of interesting information on the official website of the Steam Locomotive Works, which is worth reading before you arrive.
It is important, however, that the steam locomotive depot no longer performs the function for which it was built (since 1991), but the Polish Association of Railway Lovers saved the place from falling into complete ruin. It is now an open-air museum, or open-air museum, where you can see models of steam locomotives, wagons and other exhibits related to the history of railroads in Poland.
What is its tour like and what can we see here?
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Skierniewice steam locomotive depot tour
Visiting the steam locomotive depot in Skierniewice is possible, but very rarely ;) And this is the biggest minus of this place, which needs to be written about at the beginning (there will be many pluses soon, so please read on!). This is not a tourist attraction where you come during opening hours, buy a ticket at the ticket office and enter the open-air museum.
You can only enter here as part of open days, of which there are only two per month, and that too only for a few months of the year – the exact schedule of open days is listed here.
Tours are guided, with groups of up to 30 people. Thanks to this form of walking around the facility, visitors can really learn a lot not only about the various units (there are about 100 of them here), but also about the steam locomotive depot itself. Some of the units stand outdoors and some in the fan room, and we must admit that it was the walk through the fan room that impressed us the most. Walking among the wagons and locomotives, we had the impression that the hall stretched on forever.
In the open-air museum you can see not only steam locomotives, but also electric and diesel locomotives, wagons, draisine, there are even narrow-gauge steam locomotives. There are also exhibits related to railroads.
What is important, however, is that the place is run by passionate people who seem to know everything about trains. During our visit, there was no question they didn’t know the answer to. Simply such places are not only worth visiting but also worth supporting!
Visit with children
One might think that this is an ideal place for children, after all, they very often love all kinds of trains. It is worth adding, however, that children (especially the younger ones) need to be very careful on the site. There are old wagons, locomotives, some bitten by the tooth of time, in the fan room there are various elements on the floor that children should not touch or may trip over. You just have to be careful and stick to the guide.
How much does a ticket to the Skierniewice Steam Plant cost?
Speaking of supporting. The museum is visited for free. There are no cash registers here, no tickets are purchased, the place is simply open on specific days and then anyone, free of charge, can view the historic buildings and units.
What we encourage you to do, however, is to support the site financially. At the end of the tour there is a box for voluntary donations, and you can also make an online transfer. It is definitely worth dropping a few zlotys and making a contribution to the development of this place.
Opening hours of the Skierniewice Steam Plant
The opening hours of the steam locomotive depot museum in Skierniewice are quite… specific. There are only 12 days a year when you can enter the steam locomotive depot, and these are the first weekends (Saturday and Sunday) in the months of May through October. On these days, the open-air museum is open from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm.
The exceptions are various events like Railway Museum Night in May 2023.
We encourage you to check the calendar of events before you arrive.
Getting to the Steam Locomotive Depot in Skierniewice
The steam locomotive depot in Skierniewice is located in Lodz province, between Lodz and Warsaw (it is 72 kilometers from Lodz and 85 kilometers from Warsaw).
You can come to the site by car and park on the street, but probably a more interesting experience will be to come by train ;) It will take only 15 minutes to walk from the railroad station in Skierniewice, and it will be an interesting introduction to see the historic rolling stock.
Street. Łowicka 1
Where to stay for the night in the vicinity of the Steamworks in Skierniewice?
If you are looking for accommodation, there are several options in and around Skierniewice itself. We have selected for you some suggestions with facilities that have at least very good reviews. In Skierniewice they are mostly apartments, so we have also added two facilities in the area (so up to 20 km) that we think deserve attention.
- Business Center Apartment
Address: Stanislawa Rybickiego 8, 96-100 Skierniewice
Prices: from 205 PLN for a double room
- Dworek Hotel
Address: 24 Józefa Piłsudskiego, 96-100 Skierniewice
Prices: from 320 PLN for a double room (breakfast included)
- Skierniewice Apartment
Address: Mazowiecka 32/4, 96-100 Skierniewice
Prices: from 350 PLN for a double room
- Eco Nieborów
Address: ul. Janusz Radziwill 24, 99-416 Nieborów
Prices: from 240 PLN for a double room (breakfast included)
- Oberża pod Złotym Pigiakiem
Address: Nieborów 175, 99-416 Nieborów
Prices: from 170 PLN for a double room
Our opinion about the Steamworks in Skierniewice
Like other such places in Poland, it too is severely underfunded. With its interesting history, unique exhibits, and passionate people who are trying to breathe a lot of life into the place – it has tremendous potential, which we hope will eventually be realized!