Trip idea 1
Warsaw City Break
Most people ask the question: Why Poland? Why not Ibiza? Why not Tenerife? Surely its cold in Poland?
Whilst we have travelled to Ibiza and Tenerife (you can read more about our travels to these places later on this website), we are here to tell you that Poland is a great country. Over the next few paragraphs we will hopefully enlighten you to try Warsaw and many other Polish cities – there is plenty to discover and enjoy!
We have been travelling to this great city for a number of years, our first trip was back in 2004. Needless to say a lot has changed over the years and the old ramshackle, often seedy market stall shops situated by the Palace of Culture, has long since disappeared and taking over the area is a new vibrant shopping centre complete with a Hard Rock Café, next door to which is the Café To Lubie. This amazingly friendly pit stop, offers great hospitality and as we visited on more than one occasion our group were offered free, yes FREE shots which were a very welcome addition – beware they can be lethal!
Every time we visit Warsaw we stay at one of the best hotels in the city. This is the 4 star Polonia Palace Hotel. Situated directly opposite the Palace of Culture and a 5 minute walk from the Central railway station, making it a great place to stay, close to transport links and in the right spot for all amenities. It’s so good which is why we are on our eighth visit this year!
The breakfasts are particularly amazing with the biggest array of food we have ever seen, including plentiful vodka and champagne in place of morning tea for those that might still need it!
Please check their website for some great deals.
This hotel has an amazing history and well worth checking out.
- General Eisenhower gave his address from the balcony there
- Chopin played there
- The SS stayed there during WW2
You will find that weekend prices are cheaper as this hotel is used by a lot of business people. Probably for the breakfast vodka.!
The airport link to the central station is very simple and costs around 4.40 Zloty’s (about 85p) for a 75 minute ticket which covers train metro bus and tram also. These tickets are obtainable in machines dotted around the city and at the airports. Please ensure you validate your ticket when you first get on the transport. There are validating machines by the doors.
For smaller journeys there is a 20 minute ticket for 3.4 zloty’s and again reduced prices for OAP s and Children are available. Don’t fret about the language barrier as all machines have the capability of showing everything in English!
When popping over to Warsaw one of our first stops as we finish our journey prior to checking in to the hotel, is the Champions Sports Bar (owned by the Marriott Hotel). This is situated on Aleje Jerozolimskie, the same street as the Polonia Palace Hotel. Although one of the dearer places to drink they have a happy hour which lasts over 2 hours where drinks are substantially reduced. Their menu is extensive and their chilli nachos are very yummy!
Please check out their online price lists.
Whilst mentioning costs we recommend using the price of living comparison site www.numbeo.com – a great website for information and price comparisons and you will no doubt see that Warsaw is substantially cheaper than most (if not all) European capital cites.
For anyone who likes culture, history etc there are plenty of great places to visit from Lazinki Park to the Uprising Museum. Here is a list of some of the top places we have visited over the years with brief descriptions:
The Uprising Museum
Unsurprisingly this museum covers the Nazi Occupation of Warsaw and shows how bad the condition of the Warsaw Ghetto became under their rule. This very moving museum shows exactly what happened when the Jews, Poles and gypsies fought back.
Definitely worth a visit.
This attraction like many others is free one day a week so check their website (www.1944.pl) for details.
The Railway Museum
Located a short walk from the Uprising Museum is a disused railway station for all train buffs who love climbing all over old steam engines and early diesels and electrics. A great way to spend a couple of hours. There is also a large room with more exhibits from Polish Railway history.
Please note that this museum is due to move soon please check the website (www.stacjamuzeum.pl).
The Palace of Culture
Left as a gift by the Russians this massive building dominates the Warsaw skyline. Situated across the road from the Polonia Palace Hotel. It’s a Must Do whilst in Poland!
Many Exhibitions are also held here every year and the view from the final floor gives you amazing panoramic views across the city – a great photo opportunity.
Enjoy a pint of Polish Lager at the top. Website at www.pkin.pl
This is no ordinary park – with Royal buildings, great sculptures, amazing wildlife including marching ducks and beautiful flower and fauna you may even find some peaceful bliss. Take a stroll down to this Warsaw treasure.
Idyllic in spring with colour and stunning in winter with snow this is basically a haven all year round. Enjoy the many cafés and bars. With some fine dining thrown in, watching peacocks stroll on the well kept lawns or sit in a hammock on a small home-made beach enjoying a refreshing pint.
There’s definitely a lot to experience in Lazienki Park – find out more here www.lazienki-krolewskie.pl
The Old Town
The Old Town is a misnomer, it is actually a re-built modern reproduction, but we defy anybody to notice the difference! The Old Town has been remodelled exactly as Warsaw looked prior to the Nazi invasion as it was completely obliterated in WW2. Marvel at the Baroque Royal Castle and the many historical buildings that have been lovingly restored.
The many statues that you will see around the town all commemorate Warsaw’s past and a must-see is the “Maly Powstaniec” (the little insurguent).
The uprising Museum will give you a very informative history and a 3D film experience showing the obliteration of the city. Another must-see is “The Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers” in Plac Marszalka Jozefa Pilsudskiego which is guarded 24 hours a day by two representatives of the Batallion of the Polish Army and the changing of the guard takes place on the hour, every hour, 365 days a year!
Once you have enjoyed your tour around the Old Town you can relax with a nice meal or a casual drink. Watch the world go by, a must visit.
This stadium was only built recently for the Euros held in Poland and Ukraine. It is most notably famous for having a roof that couldn’t be closed in the rain leading to the Poland v. England game being rescheduled.
Daily tours take place and are really cheap. English speaking tour guides are available but its best to phone first for the stadium tour as some days there is only 1 per day. This is on the opposite side of the River Vistula easily accessed by foot, Metro or Bus. Website at www.pgenarodowy.pl
Stag and Hen Parties
For the stag/Hen parties there are plenty of inexpensive clubs in the city with admittance charges around £2 like DJBAR this will often include free shots! Restaurants are a plenty within Warsaw. We recommend a Browar grill de brazil steakhouse situated on Marszałkowska 76/80 which is 5 mins walk from the Polonia Palace Hotel and is of our favourites with an all-you-can-eat meat section and complimented with metres of shots along with really low prices… Beware this place gets very busy so booking would be advised.
For the guys, like most European cities there are an abundance of Gentlemen’s Clubs which cater for most needs. Expect to pay an admission charge, cloakroom charge and a bit extra for your drinks. However you will be pleasantly surprised with the prices compared to London etc.
Warsaw’s weather can be very extreme. It can be bitter but stunning in winter and the parks are amazing when covered in thick snow. The same parks are stunning in the summer and throughout the year. There are man made beach areas in the park and a large beach situated on the river near to the Stadium. There is also a nightclub by this man made beach.
On the old town side of the River Vistula there is a spectacular musical waterfall display which is a truly awesome sight on a warm summers evening.
The weather in summer can be very hot and humid so be careful in the sun. Boat trips in the summer months are well worth a trip as are the many bar restaurants on the river front.