Confess! Have you ever visited Warsaw?

Warsaw is retarded European capital, with weedy and not arranged banks of the river, only one subway line (all right, there’s gonna be second one soon), we are hundreds years behind everything and everyone, nothing is happening here, there is no original monuments, but everything is rebuilt after the war, and it’s just poor.

If you think about Warsaw like that, forgive me, but the only person retarded here is you.

At this point, I must protest loudly and stand in defense of Warsaw. It’s definitely one of the most active and modern cities in whole Europe, and certainly in Central and Eastern Europe.

visit warsaw zwiedzanie warszawa

I’m not going to talk here about people, who live in Warsaw, they are not too popular and liked in Poland.

But wherever in the world you look, inside every nation there will be such dislikes: The English do not like the Scots and vice versa, the French in the south mock usually with the French in the north, the Italians from the north do not digest the Sicilians, bla bla bla, I could talk and talk about it!

Generally, it is not only a Polish thing, that the inhabitants of one part of the country, do not like those of another. Such a phenomenon occurs in every nation and – attention! – it’s normal!

But we’re not going to discuss about Varsovians here, but about the city itself!

Before World War II Warsaw was called the Paris of the East, later it was under occupation and the Warsaw Uprising broke out, which brought great destructions, after WWII the city was partially rebuilt in the pre-war style (for example the Old Town), but the majority – because of the communism – in a block-style socialism.

It is hardly surprising that the Paris atmophere was lost forever, over which many people still have regrets.

A bucket of cold water on heads: the Poles made up that Warsaw was Paris of the East. Likewise, the Czechs were talking the same about Prague and Romanians about Bucharest. Surprisingly, the French never called Paris Warsaw of the West.

Hmmmm, I wonder why? Did they feel that they were unworthy?

Holy cow! This text was supposed to be about something else!

Let Paris be Paris and Warsaw be Warsaw!

You laugh because it is one metro line? Soon will be the second ALREADY! Stop comparing Warsaw to London! London started to build their underground 160 years ago! So can you imagine, how our metro will look like in 50, 100 or 150 years?

And the central part of II line of Warsaw’s metro will be open only 4 years after starting the construction! It means that Warsaw CHANGES really quick!

This text is not going to be about metro, of course.

So, since this is a travel blog, let’s focus on the tourist side of Warsaw. And let’s show that it really has a lot to offer!

Ok, pre-war Warsaw no longer exists. We have to admit it. Let’s not regret it but embrace it! We cannot look through the prism of war trauma all the time. We have to move forward.

visit warsaw zwiedzanie warszawa
source: Alberto Carrasco Casado, flickr.com

Overall, I am an optimist and always try to look for the positives, even if I don’t like something. Luckily, I like Warsaw so it’s easier to point positives. I like that museums get closed for a few seasons to complete modernization, because when they are opened back, they will finally represent European level! Example? The National Museum, which was renovated few years ago. I love the National Museum in Warsaw!

I like such initiatives in the city as Veturilo (the net of city bikes), although I never used it, but I can see that a lot of people use it, I cannot wait when the Vistula boulevards will be renovated, that cellars under the Old Town became opened to the public and there is even a small art scene. And I like that, even if you normally have to pay to visit museums, practically every day you can visit any cultural institution for free.

Holy cow again, I really like Warsaw!

The Bucket List Challenge: Poland – Warsaw

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In my Bucket List Challenge, which is a game, is a very large Polish part. One of the levels of this stage – urban level – involves visiting Warsaw, specifically the 31 landmarks / attractions in it. These are:

Museums and palaces:

the National Museum • the Neon Museum • the Warsaw Uprising Museum • the Museum in Wilanów • the Museum of the Polish Army • the Musem of Warsaw • the Pod Blachą Palace • the Royal Castle • the Museum of the History of Polish Jews

Parks and gardens:

the Royal Baths Park (Łazienki) • the Botanical Garden in Al. Ujazdowskie • the Saxon Gardens with the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier • the Zoological Garden • the show at Multimedia Fountains Park

Markets and streets:

the New Town • the Old Town Square • Krakowskie Przedmiescie Street

Churches and cemeteries:

the Ausberg Protestant Cemetery • the Powązki Cemetery • the Jewish Cemetery • St. John’s Cathedral • the Orthodox Cathedral in Praga district • the Bernardine monastery complex in Czerniaków district

Other:

the Vistula boulevards (after reconstruction) • the Copernicus Science Centre • the Palace of Culture and Science (view from 30th floor) • the Cellars of the Old Town • thr National Stadium • the monument of Warsaw’s Mermaid • eat a donut in Blikle’s cafe • watch a play in Roma Theatre

visit warsaw zwiedzanie warszawa
source: Alberto Carrasco Casado, flickr.com

It was really good idea to make a game out of my Bucket List. It motivates me to do a lot of research and sightseeing and because of that I can learn a bit about Warsaw.

For example I learnt, that not everything is reconstructed. Some monuments survived the war, like the Carmelite Church in Krakowskie Przedmiescie, cemeteries, the Palace in Wilanów.

So I have seen already 17/31 sights from my list. Some have to wait until re-opening after modernization, some have to wait until Summer (like a show in Fountains Park) but even if, it’s still very exciting thing!

What is more, there are plenty of places in Warsaw, where it is fun just to hang out after sightseeing. And these are not touristy places! For example, I love Warsaw’s beaches. Did you know that Warsaw is the ONLY European capital, which has the unregulated bank of the river? Definitely we should use this as our advantage, and not complain about it! We are original! Personally, sitting by the Thames in London or the Danube in Vienna wasn’t a big pleasure for me. Paris and Budapest were all right, but because of the historic buildings by the river. And in Warsaw it’s not only green, but also some fragments of the right bank of the river were protected under the European Program Nature 2000!

Warsaw is cool (even though I wouldn’t like to live there, because I just do not like big cities when it comes to everyday life), so I encourage you to visit Warsaw! To learn, to explore, especially when you can use the free days in cultural institutions and not pay the entrance fee. (I’ll prepare the list of those days for you soon.)

Because – just answer yourself honestly – when was the last time when you visited Warsaw?

Do you have any questions about Warsaw? Write them in the comment! Have you ever visited Warsaw? What have you seen here? If not, what would you like to see?

The entry was made while listening to the best pieces of Frederic Chopin.

One comment

  1. Great post! I have actually visited Warsaw for the first time few weeks ago. I love the city. Unfortunately, the weather was not the best, it was raining a lot, so insted of sightseeing with my friends we have chosen some indoor activities:) We also went on a bar trip and discovered some amazing bars. My favourite one was Bubbles in the downtown. It was small and cozy, but the choice of champagnes was huge! And their food was delicious, and freshly made. Love it there! I hope to visit Poland again soon and happen to have better conditions:)

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