A land of contrasts: deep conflicting history mixed with striking city architecture; alpine heartlands with a smattering of UNESCO World Heritage sites; a unique culture in the heart of Europe forged on the crossroads of modernity and antiquity. Poland is, without a doubt, worth visiting. But it’s not often labelled as an obvious tourist destination. To pass by an opportunity to visit Poland is missing out. Here’s why.
You Can Find It All
What are your travel goals? City weekend break? Culture absorption? Beach relaxation? Skiing or outdoor pursuits? Historical and architectural quest? Culinary experience? Party nights? Whatever your preconceptions, you can find each and every one of these within Poland’s borders.
UNESCO Know It
Don’t just take our word for it. There are a staggering 15 UNESCO World Heritage sites in Poland. These are as diverse as the ancient Bialowieza Forest where you can see the stoic European bison, to architectural and historical cities such as Krakow. Of course, also here you’ll be immersed in overpowering history at Auschwitz. However, also within spitting distance, did you know you can visit the Wieliczka salt mines, which are a mammoth underground network including chapels and lakes?
UNESCO World Heritage sites abound in Poland, and it really is no surprise given the diversity of natural landscape and history on offer.
We’ll come back to the history in a moment, but what else should draw you to Poland?
If you’re planning a gastronomical trip then chances are you’ll think of Paris for cordon bleu classics, Bologna for pasta, maybe even London for its gastro-pub uniqueness, but rarely will you think of Poland.
This comes down to a marketing failure alone! If foodie heaven is top of your agenda then we particularly recommend a trip to Warsaw. There are two Michelin starred restaurants here, Senses and Atelier Amaro. Here you’ll find fine dining with a Polish twist.
However, don’t miss an opportunity to get out on to the streets to truly experience the flavour of Poland. Bask in the sunshine of a town square café, enjoying a Polish beer, whilst sampling traditional street food such as pierogi or naleśniki. Pierogi are traditional dumplings stuffed with savoury or sweet fillings and you’ll find them everywhere you go. Naleśniki are the Polish equivalent of crepes.
Alongside this you can warm up with borscht, treat yourself with a doughnut look-a-like paczki, enjoy some sernik (cheesecake) with coffee, or traditional poppy seed cake makowiec. Don’t forget, this is a country famous for its vodka. You can experience flavours you never knew existed.
Poland Fits the Budget
If you want to experience real Europe on a shoestring, then Poland is the place to do it without compromise. Similarly, if you’re looking for extreme luxury, you also won’t be disappointed.
City-breaks and skiing trips are typically expensive affairs. This isn’t the case when you consider Poland. Airlines such as Ryanair and Easyjet will get you from London to a Polish city for very little. You can stay in affordable yet good quality, and even quirky, accommodation.
Entertainment, attractions, food and transport are all relatively low cost for high quality. Poland is a way of immersing yourself in European culture and glorious landscape without breaking the bank.
History by the Bucket Load
Let’s go back to history for a moment. You really cannot underestimate the extreme cultural historical experience you’ll discover when you visit Poland. Here you’ll find medieval castles such as the infamous Malbork and Wawel Royal Castle, to museums which are interactive and immersive such as the Warsaw Rising Museum. Yes, World War II features highly on the agenda, as it should, with memorial sites such as Auschwitz, but the history here is so much more diverse.
Poland has existed as the crossroads of Europe for centuries. The result is that the country is an eclectic mix of history and culture. With firm Catholic roots you’ll see fascinating cathedrals and churches on an incredible scale.
The Great Outdoors is Simply Spectacular
Visitors to Poland are typically drawn to the world famous cities of Warsaw and Krakow. However, step outside the city limits and you’ll find a range of diverse and impressive landscapes.
For mountain lovers in search of alpine vistas and winter sports, or summer hiking, head to the Tatra Mountains in the south. You can visit here easily using Zakopane as your base. You can be forgiven for thinking you are in fact in Switzerland.
However, that’s not all. There are over 20 national parks in Poland, each preserving a unique habitat and landscape. You can canoe along rivers in Drawa National Park or watch waves crash at Wolin. Marvel at the rock formations you’ll find in the Stokowe Mountains or track down the bison in the ancient forest of Białowieza. Bird lovers should head to the nation’s largest national park, Biebrza, where the peat bogs attract immense varieties of aquatic birds, and of course there are the impressive mountains within the Bieszczady area.
You’ll Find Beach Life to Rival the South of France
If the South of France is typically too hot, busy and touristy for you but you still want to experience a wonderful beach holiday, then a hidden secret is Poland’s northern coast of white sandy beaches.
The resorts of Sopot and Ustka are ideal bases, and the Hel Peninsula is great if you are a water sports enthusiast. What’s more, you’ll find exactly what you’re looking for here. If you’re looking for a quiet family-friendly beach town then you’ll find your corner of paradise. If you want to party by night and sunbathe by day, you also won’t be disappointed in lively Sopot.
Polish Culture is Infectious
Finally, a huge draw for visiting Poland is to get to know the Poles themselves. Family is very much the focus on Polish culture, and is at the heart of the way people interact. Children and young people are welcomed yet this is also matched with a business-focused entrepreneurial spirit which leads to dynamic cities. This is a hospitable and welcoming country whether you’re here with family, friends, or on business.
What’s more, the Polish love to party. Festivals, bars, clubs and entertainment venues bring the cities to life after dark. There’s always a reason to celebrate here, and drink will flow in abandon.
So what are you waiting for? Book your trip to Poland today and discover for yourself why Poland really is worth visiting.