The Royal Palace takes us back to the Prussian era in the city's history. In the First Silesian War in 1741 Friedrich II („Frederick the Great“) conquered Silesia and Breslau, as it was named then, became part of Prussia. To have a residence in the Silesian capital Friedrich bought this palace from a local nobleman and extended it as to befit the ambitions of a king.
Nowadays the palace hosts departments of the city museum: the pemanent exhibitions „1000 years of Wrocław“ and the art collections since 1850, in addition to that there are temporary exhibitions.
I highly recommend the exhibition about the history of the city to anyone who is even remotely interested in this topic as it is very well done. All explanations are trilingual (Polish, German and English) and you can also obtain an audioguide should you want to. All eras from the beginnings in the middle ages to the socialist era and its end are covered and presented room by room, illustrated with characteristic objects, often pieces of high quality and value.
This exhibition also includes the 'historical' rooms (of course it is all reconstructed) of the Prussian kings in the beletage.
A small rococo garden has been reconstructed which can be entered from inside the palace. It looks a bit alien among the surrounding run-down socialist buildings and onstruction sites, though...
The art collection is still not very big as they only started it recently and plan to enlarge it slowly slowly. It assembles works by artists who studied and/or worked in the city. There are some interesting artworks among them. By the time I got there I was a bit too tired to really appreciate the paintings properly, I'm afraid.
Entrance fee: The good news is that the permanent exhibitions are free. Only for temporary exhibitions there is an entrance fee of 15 PLN, and there might be a small charge for the hire of the audioguide.
Opening hours: 10.00 to 17.00 on weekdays, to 18.00 on weekends, closed on Mondays.
Directions: ul. Kazimierza Wielkiego - three blocks south of Rynek