Setting aside the valley's natural beauty, our Biebrza, has a long and diverse past of historical influences, coming from many different cultures and religions. The feared Teutonic Knights and the pagan tribes of Jacwing left traces of the life in Middle Ages. Settlers originating from Russia, Lithuania and the Mazowsze province colonised Biebrza Marshes since the 15th century. The 16th century bought the Jewish culture to the valley of Biebrza. It just takes a closer look to find evidence of all these nations, which are still present in today's language, religion and customs.
More about the history of Jew's sztetls on the web pages:
Located in the Southern Basin of the Biebrza Valley near Wizna, the small village of Wierciszewo is definitely worth a visit. Local farmers have to ferry their cattle across the waters of Biebrza similar to their ancestors of the past. If you never have seen cattle swim across a river, check out the small villages of Dolistowo or Brzostowo. This is all that remains of the once thriving rural community that once inhabited our Biebrza. Folk customs that still thrive here in Biebrza include, embroidering, basket weaving, religious cross smiting and carving. The women of Lipsk, according to past custom use wax to decorate eggs for Easter every year. Many places (Janow, Korycin, Goniadz) continue the art of handy-crafts using double fabricated loom machines. These specialized pieces of textile art were made for altars in churches as well as for banquet tables and ornamental purposes in manors. Later, by rich peasant families these pieces of fabric symbolised the brides' dowries.
The Osowiec Fortress complex is arguably the most important monument of the Biebrza Valley. The Tsar for defence against the Germans erected this huge fortification complex, situated in the difficult to access marshes. Osowiec Fortress consists of four sub-complexes forming a quadrangle at the junction of the lower and middle basin. Complex Two, the ruins near Osowiec village and Complex One, where is located Museum of Fortress can be visited by tourists with a guide. Complex One is open only to Poles, with the exception of foreigners who have a proper military pass, acquired at the Ministry of Defence in Warsaw.