Błędowska Desert extending to the border of Silesia and Małopolska region. Desert took name from Błędów (district of Dąbrowa Górnicza) to Klucze and it is the largest area of quicksand in Poland and one of the largest in Europe. The sandy area is indeed much larger than the Błędów Desert itself.
It is called also Polish Sahara for its unique natural phenomenon. It spreads for about 32 km2 and was created by massive cutting down the trees for the purposes of metallurgical and mining industry of Olkusz which revealed layers of sand collected about 2-3 years ago, rest has been done by wind. The average depth of sand layers is about 17-20 m.
Legend connected with desert says that the creation of the desert was work of devil who was waiting for the soul of Mr Twardowski. Once day, the wizard made a wish that the devil would collect all silver from the Polish lands and hide it under Olkusz. It did not go unnoticed from the neighbouring inhabitants who started to build mines. Devil decided to cover them with sand from Baltic. During the Second World War, German troops of Africa Corps tested their vehicles here. Later on it became a training ground of the 6th Airborne Brigade. In 1999 NATO planes and helicopters flew over the desert.
The southern part of the desert, which has precious natural habitats is an ecological use (the area of "Nature 2000"). In 2011-2014, thanks to means obtained from EU, the National Fund of Environment Protection and Water Management in Warsaw and means of the commune, it will be subject to a thorough rehabilitation. Total cost of the project will be over 2,5 bilion Euro.
Natural environments consists of 350 plant species and over 150 animal species. This "Polish Sahara" is also one of the more interesting attractions of the Kraków-Częstochowa Upland and the region of a few intersecting hiking trails.