Szydłów, known as „Polish Carcassonne”, is a small town located in Sandomierz area. Dating back to the 12th century, the town is famous for its well-preserved fortifications. Szydłów was granted a charter in 1329 by the king Władysław I the Elbow-high. As part of his penance for killing bishop Boryczka, his son Casimir the Great founded two churches in Szydłów and surrounded the town with enormous stony fortifications (1.80 m wide at the top).

The town was thriving in the 16th century; its economical growth stemmed from royal privileges given to craftsmen. The town was also well-known for its armorers. What is more, in the 16th century the town was so rich that it had its own water supply system.