The phoenix city
Warsaw is the capital and largest city of the country, located in east central Poland within the Masovia (Mazowieckie) region.
If there was ever a city to define resilience, have a huge respect for history and possess the ability to change personalities, Warsaw ticks all of the boxes. Almost completely destroyed during the last World War, Warsaw is a phoenix arisen from the ashes. In the city, you will find a widely-contrasting collection of architecture, Gothic, neoclassical, Renaissance & restored baroque in the Old Town and modern skyscrapers neighbouring socialist realist buildings around the centre. The most noticeable building in Warsaw is the ‘Seven Sisters’ style Palace of Culture and Science.
The city is a significant cultural, political, and economic hub and also a major international tourist destination. Its historical Old Town was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In excess of 85% of the historic centre of Warsaw was deliberately destroyed during World War II by Nazi Germany. A meticulous restoration of the Old Town took place after the war and this included its important religious buildings, the Royal Castle, Old Town Market, townhouses, and the circuit of the city walls. It is an outstanding example of a near-total reconstruction of a span of history covering the 13th to the 20th century.
As you would expect from its turbulent history, there are many monuments and museums within the city dedicated to times of conflict such as the Warsaw Rising Museum and POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews; both of which are highly recommended.
Warsaw is blessed with beautiful parklands with green space covering almost a quarter of the city’s total area. These range from small neighbourhood parks and green spaces along streets or in courtyards, to tree-lined avenues, large historic parks, nature conservation areas and urban forests at the fringe of the city. The best-known green areas in Warsaw are Łazienki Park, Saxon Garden and Krasiński Garden, other favourite outdoor spots include a stroll beside the Vistula River and the rooftop garden of the University Library.
Łazienki Park is the biggest and most popular park in the city and it provides visitors with many things to explore. During a walk around the 76 hectares park, you’ll see the Art Nouveau Chopin monument, a classicist amphitheatre, summer houses, pavilions, cafes & restaurants, lakes, the English garden, an Old Orangery, palaces and much more. There’s so much to see that it is possible to spend the full day in the park.
Warsaw has changed rapidly over the past two decades and can now compete with most European cities, particularly with its incredible selection of restaurants. The days when milk bars were once the norm are well over. Cool cafes, trendy bars, craft beer bars and buzzing night clubs complement the great dining spots and theatres. Warsaw is a city that knows how to let its hair down and you will not be disappointed with the nightlife scene.
See the Top 10 things to do.
Learn the facts and legends of the capital city on a private walking tour of Old Town's highlights and visit the Royal Castle with tickets included. Take a walk of Warsaw, see the beauty of the city and learn anecdotes, history and legends from your guide.