Category: Water sports

Category: Water sports

Top 10 tourist attractions in Poland

Where to go, what to see!

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From Poland’s lake district Masuria with over 2,000 lakes to true wilderness areas like The Bialowieza Forest to the stunning Tatra Mountains – you will find that Poland has something to offer every visitor.  Here’s our Top 10 recommended tourist attractions in Poland:

  1. Auschwitz

    It is widely agreed that everyone should visit Auschwitz at least once in their lives, it is a stern reminder of the horrors that human beings can inflict on each other and for some people, a life-changing experience. Auschwitz was a network of concentration and extermination camps built and operated in occupied Poland by Nazi Germany during the Second World War. Auschwitz is the German name for Oświęcim, the town the camps were located in and around; it was renamed by the Germans after they invaded Poland in September 1939 – Further information

    Auschwitz

  2. Wieliczka Salt Mine

    The Wieliczka Salt Mine, located in the town of Wieliczka in southern Poland, lies within the Krakow metropolitan area. The mine continuously produced table salt from the 13th century until 2007 as one of the world’s oldest operating salt mines. The mine’s attractions for tourists include dozens of statues and an entire chapel that have been carved out of the rock salt by the miners. About 1.2 million persons visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine annually – Further information

    Wieliczka Salt Mine

  3. Zakopane

    Zakopane is a town in southern Poland. The location is informally known as “the Winter Capital of Poland,” and lies in the southern part of the Podhale region at the foot of the Tatra Mountains, the only alpine mountain range in the Carpathian Mountains. It is the most important Polish center of mountaineering and skiing, and is visited annually by some three million tourists – Further information

    Zakopane

  4. Tricity

    Tricity (also Tri-City) is an urban area consisting of three Polish cities: Gdańsk, Gdynia and Sopot. They are situated adjacent to one other, in a row, on the coast of the Gdańsk Bay, Baltic Sea, in Eastern Pomerania, northern Poland. There’s plenty to do around Tricity, there are lots of tourist attractions and a lively nightlife scene not to mention all the fun of the seaside! Either enjoy sunbathing or take part in any of the many watersport activities on offer. From theatre to Rock concerts to quality restaurants, its all available in the Tricity area – Further information

    Beach holidays

  5. Tatra Mountains

    The Tatras are the highest mountain range in the Carpathian Mountains. Although considerably smaller than the Alps, they are classified as having an alpine landscape. Their high mountain character, combined with great accessibility, makes them popular with tourists and scientists. The area is a well-known winter sports area and includes the resort of Zakopane, the “Winter Capital” of Poland – Further information

    Tatra Mountains

  6. Czestochowa

    Czestochowa is a city in south Poland on the Warta River. It lies among the picturesque Jurassic rocks of Krakow Czestochowa Upland, topped with the ruins of Medieval castles. The town is known for the famous Pauline monastery of Jasna Góra that is the home of the Black Madonna painting, a shrine to the Virgin Mary. Every year, millions of pilgrims from all over the world come to Częstochowa to see it – Further information

    Black Madonna

  7. Masuria

    Masuria is an area in northeastern Poland famous today for its many thousands of lakes. Today, the region’s economy relies largely on eco-tourism and agriculture. The lakes offer varieties of water sports such as sailing and holiday activities. The whole area has become a prime destination for yachtspeople and canoeists, and is also popular among anglers, hikers, bikers and nature-lovers – Further information

    Masuria

  8. Kashubia

    Kashubia is a lake district in North Poland. It is surrounded by many hills made by Scandinavian glaciers. Among larger cities, Gdynia contains the largest proportion of people declaring Kashubian origin. However, the biggest city of the Kashubia region is Gdańsk, the capital of the Pomeranian Voivodeship and the traditional capital of Kashubia – Further information

    Kashubia

  9. Bieszczady Mountains

    The Bieszczady Mountains are pleasantly devoid of the trappings of mass tourism and offer visitors the opportunity to discover the, ‘Wild East’ without venturing into Ukraine or the Soviet Union. The scenery in the region is wild and rugged and includes flora such as the Dacian Violet, Carpathian Beech and the Hungarian Violet, all species which cannot be seen further West. The wildlife in the area include bears, lynx, beavers, wolves, European bison and red mountain deer – Further information

    Bieszczady Mountains

  10. Wolf’s Lair

    Wolf’s Lair in Poland is the standard English name for Wolfsschanze, Adolf Hitler’s first World War II Eastern Front military headquarters, one of several Führerhauptquartier (Führer Headquarters) or FHQs located in various parts of Europe. The complex was blown up and abandoned on 25 January 1945, but many of the bunkers were so thick that their damaged walls and ceilings remain – Further information

    Wolf's Lair


Tricity Poland

Gdańsk, Gdynia and Sopot

Tricity (also Tri-City) is an urban area consisting of three Polish cities: Gdańsk, Gdynia and Sopot. They are situated adjacent to one other, in a row, on the coast of the Gdańsk Bay, Baltic Sea, in Eastern Pomerania, northern Poland.

Wealth

The area is home to some of Poland’s wealthiest people. Nearly 35% of taxpayers from Tricity are in the middle and high taxable income groups (average for Poland 10%). Approximately 12% of Tricity taxpayers are in highest taxable income group (Polish average 3%).

Tourism in Tricity

There’s plenty to do around Tricity, there are lots of tourist attractions and a lively nightlife scene not to mention all the fun of the seaside! Either enjoy sunbathing or take part in any of the many watersport activities on offer. From theatre to Rock concerts to quality restaurants, its all available in the Tricity area.

You will find some well-known events in Gdansk, in particular International Pop festivals such as the Heineken Opener Festival.

Sopot

Sopot has a great geographical location – lying between the beautiful woods of the Tricity Landscape Park, and the numerous sand beaches of the Bay of Gdańsk. Sopot is known for the endless quantities of tourists, who mainly visit the city during the summertime.

Monte Casino Street (ul. Bohaterów Monte Cassino) is the center of Sopot, a pedestrianised promenade. On both sides of the street there are countless XIX – XXth-century houses, some of them housing pubs or restaurants today.

To discover the real charm of the town, turn into one of Monte Casino’s side streets, where you’re bound to admire numerous art nouveau houses, parks and gardens. One such beautiful street shelters the splendid Sierakowskich Court (Dworek Sierakowskich).

At the end of Monte Casino you’ll find the Wooden Pier (Molo). It is the longest wooden pier in Europe. During the summertime, for a small fee you can enter the pier, and admire the coastline. You’ll enjoy the sight of the Grand Hotel (one of the largest and most impressive in the Tri-City) on one side, and the Zhong Hua Chinese Hotel on the other, where the Łazienki Południowe (Southern Baths) used to be.

In summer, there are jazz concerts on the hotel’s terrace every Thursday. Another destination for a long walk are the Castle Hill Caves, Sopot’s oldest historic site and the only monument of this kind located in the center of a contemporary European city.

Each August Sopot plays host to the annual International Sopot Song Festival. The Opera Lesna in the heart of the Tri-City forest is where you can watch and listen to the best artists arriving in Sopot and still feel the special atmosphere of this magic place.

Today Sopot bustles with cafes, bars, restaurants and clubs. Nightlife and countless summer events is what makes this city so popular. So let yourself be mesmerized by this remarkable resort where you will surely find something for yourself.

Gdynia

Gdynia is a young, but quickly expanding port situated right by the seashore, offering many tourist attractions as well as splendid shopping opportunities and a lot of entertainment.

The city was founded as a Polish harbor in 1926. Because of its unusual location, you will easily catch great views of the sea and beautiful scenery, and also find long promenades, beautiful waterfronts, marinas and yacht clubs. Gdynia is the only city in Poland and one of the few in Europe to pride itself on such a long and accessible seashore.

The city has a good transportation system, so you won’t have any problems reaching Gdynia from either of the other cities.

Kosciuszki square (Skwer Kościuszki) is the sightseeing center of Gdynia. The ships moored in the dockyards , like the ORP Błyskawica destroyer (“Lightning”) or Dar Pomorza (the Pomeranian Gift) for instance, are the biggest tourist attractions.

The beach in Gdynia hosts ‘the Summer Theatre Stage’. So if you are a theatre lover you should definitely see one of the most interesting plays of the season.

Gdańsk

Gdańsk is Poland’s principal seaport as well as the capital of the Pomeranian Voivodeship. It is also historically the largest city of the Kashubian region.

The city is close to the former boundary between West Slavic and Germanic lands and it has a complex political history with periods of Polish rule, periods of German rule, and two spells as a free city. It has been part of modern Poland since 1945.

Walking in the city and getting to know its history etched in the monuments will give you many magical moments and true emotions. Gdansk is a pearl of bourgeois architecture, boasting beautiful houses and a unique market. It is a world of cozy streets and historical churches. These are also perfectly preserved fortifications, ranked among the biggest in Europe, and interesting harbour architecture.

10 Interesting Facts about Tricity

  1. Gdańsk is known and has been known as Danzig, Gdania, Gyddanyzc, Kdanzk, Gdanzc, Danceke, Danzc, Danczk, Danczik, Danczig and Gdąnsk amongst others!
  2. Gdańsk was the birthplace of the Solidarity movement which, under the leadership of political activist Lech Wałęsa, played a major role in bringing an end to Communist rule across Central Europe.
  3. Gdańsk has been around a long time. It was founded in 997.
  4. Sopot Pier is the longest in the Baltic at 640 metres.
  5. The area around Gdansk is famous for Amber which is also known by many other names such as: jantar, good stone, sacred stone, gold of the north, Baltic gold, and electron. Amber is also a mineral of many colours. Depending on the age amber nuggets range from nearly white, through all shades of yellow and orange, to dark, almost cherry-like red.
  6. Gdansk is the sixth-largest city in Poland.
  7. The Gdańsk Crane (a popular tourist attraction) was the largest port crane in Medieval Europe.
  8. Gdańsk is situated at the mouth of the Motława River, connected to the Leniwka, a branch in the delta of the nearby Vistula River, whose waterway system supplies 60% of the area of Poland and connects Gdańsk to the national capital in Warsaw.
  9. The name Gdańsk is thought to originate from the Gdania River, the original name of the Motława branch on which the city is situated.
  10. For much of its history, the majority of the inhabitants of Gdańsk were German-speakers, who called it Danzig. This name was also used in English until the end of World War II, and is still used in historical contexts. Other former English spellings of the name include Dantzig, Dantsic and Dantzic.

Beach holidays in Poland

At the seaside

One of the most popular dental tourism destinations in Poland during the Summer is Tri-City consisting of three cities in Pomerania: Gdansk, Gdynia and Sopot. They are situated adjacent to each other on the coast of Gdańsk Bay next to the Baltic Sea and are therefore ideal for beach holidays.

Dental Tourism

Gdansk is particular boasts many modern dental clinics equipped with the latest dentistry technologies and dentists and staff that are highly qualified, experienced and speak English – read more

Ideal for beach holidays

Poland has miles upon miles of golden sandy coastline and some of the biggest sand dunes in Europe. That topped with hot summers, well above the average for Europe, makes Poland an ideal beach holiday destination.

If you dream of a holidays on a beach, just imagine the over 700 km long golden strip that is the Polish seaside. The northern border of Poland is the Baltic, and most of the coastline is a beach. July and August are the best months for sunbathing at the Polish seaside.

Summertime sees the Polish seaside come to life and the most popular beach resorts attract many holidaymakers searching for sun and relaxation. Apart from the excellent beaches, holiday resorts on the Baltic Sea also boast historically captivating cities, great natural attractions, and a relaxed maritime climate.

The Baltic Sea has many advantages over resorts by the Mediterranean Sea. It guarantees two things the kids love: a large expanse of shallow water and vast beaches of fine, clean sand.

The beaches

The best beaches for parents with young children are Swinoujscie, Krynica Morska, Tiny Pogorzelica, Dziwnow, Kolobrzeg, Jastarnia and Hel.

There are no dangerous creatures in the Polish sea, but some of the over abundant algae in places can make swimming difficult.

The Polish Baltic coast is approximately 528 kilometres (328 mi) long and extends from Świnoujście on the islands of Usedom and Wolin in the west to Krynica Morska on the Vistula Spit in the east.

For the most part, Poland has a smooth coastline, which has been shaped by the continual movement of sand by currents and winds from west to east. This continual erosion and deposition has formed cliffs, dunes, and spits, many of which have migrated landwards to close off former lagoons, such as Łebsko Lake in Słowiński National Park.

Largest spits are Hel Peninsula and the Vistula Spit, largest Polish Baltic island is Wolin and the largest port cities are Gdynia, Gdańsk, Szczecin and Świnoujście.

The main coastal resorts are Sopot, Międzyzdroje, Kołobrzeg, Łeba, Władysławowo, and the Hel Peninsula.

Jurata

Jurata is a popular seaside resort on the 35 km long Hel Peninsula, which separates the Bay of Puck from the Baltic Sea.

Jurata was established in the interwar period (1928) as a Polish sea side resort, popular especially among Varsovians. Its name comes from the Lithuanian Goddess Jūratė which in Polish is spelled as Jurata. It’s easily reachable from Tricity by train, which takes approximately one hour.

July and August are high season so make sure you book your accommodation in advance.

Międzyzdroje

Międzyzdroje is located on the western side of the Polish coast, close to the border with Germany and is often referred to as The Pearl of the Baltic.

The town is famous for (Festiwal Gwiazd) the annual Festival of Stars and attracts many Polish film and TV celebrities, who leave imprints of their hands on the Promenade of Stars inspired by the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Łeba and Ustka

Łeba and Ustka are coastal towns situated on the two opposite sides of the beautiful Słowiński National Park – famous for its “shifting dunes”, which move due to strong winds creating a desert like landscape.

Ustka is a host of the annual International Contest of Fireworks, which takes place in the middle of July and boasts two beaches connected by a pedestrianised bridge on the Słupia River, which divides the town in two.


Canoeing in Poland

Canoeing and kayaking

Canoeing and kayaking are popular leisure activities in Poland. There are almost 10,000 kilometres of rivers and lakes in the country and many of these waterways are very popular for canoeing in Poland.

The Lubuskie Lake District and the rivers of the west of Poland offer some of the best kayaking.

Four of the best rivers in Poland for kayaking and canoeing enthusiasts are the River Obra, Warta River, River Notec, and River Drawa. Other rivers suitable for canoeing and kayaking include the River Odra, River Postomia, Czarna Hancza River, Brda River and the Krutynia River.

Krutynia route

The most beautiful route is the almost two hundred kilometer long Krutynia route. The river winds its way through the land of a Thousand Lakes, among a picturesque landscape of lakes and streams. The Krutynia River is always a wonderful experience, a close encounter with lush nature, beautiful lakes and the wildlife of the Pisz Forest.

Drweca River

Another interesting Mazurian route is that of the Drweca River which is one of the clearest rivers in Poland. It is about 200 km long. It starts at Ostroda, flows through forests and wildlife reserves, and goes all the way to the Vistula River near Torun. Comfortable sites for camping are found on both riverbanks. There is an annual “International Canoe Trip on Drweca river”, which is popular among canoeists from many countries.

Experienced tourists can seek adventures along more challenging whirls and rocks of mountain rivers. Kayak trips for groups are organised on the Dunajec River, which seems to be the best choice, also because of its picturesque gorges in the Pieniny Mountains.

Polish waterways are good both for long trips as well as for one-day expeditions. One day is all it takes to sail half the Radunskie Circle or the Kowaliowy Trail in the Przemecki Natural Park. Boatmen wait for visitors on the River Krutynia and take them down the prettiest parts of the river at a good pace and with no effort. The Dunajec has its traditional raftsmen — called Flis — who can take you on a breathtaking rafting excursion.

You can join rafting trips on the Odra, from Nowa Sol, all the way to Szczecin. Or paddle your way from Bory Tucholskie to Hamburg; the route about 900 km going through Brda, Bydgoski Canal, Notec, Warta, Odra and Laba.

Mountain rivers

Kayakers looking for that special, intense experience should go down one of the three true Mountain rivers, best suited for kayaking. For example the Bialka running through Tatry and Podhale – horrifyingly cold, rushing, foamy and strewn with granite rocks.


Masuria

Eco-tourism

Masuria is an area in northeastern Poland famous today for its many thousands of lakes. Today, the region’s economy relies largely on eco-tourism and agriculture. The lakes offer varieties of water sports such as sailing and holiday activities.

Poland’s Lake District

Masuria and the Masurian Lake District are known in Polish as Kraina Tysiąca Jezior and in German as Land der Tausend Seen, meaning “land of a thousand lakes.” These lakes were ground out of the land by glaciers during the Pleistocene ice age, when ice covered north Eastern Europe. By 10,000 BC this ice started to melt. Great geological changes took place and even in the last 500 years the maps showing the lagoons and peninsulas on the Baltic Sea have greatly altered in appearance.

As in other parts of northern Poland, such as from Pomerania on the Oder River to the Vistula River, this continuous stretch of lakes is popular among tourists.

Size

The Masurian Lake District extends roughly 290 km (180 mi) eastwards from the lower Vistula River to the Poland-Lithuania border and occupies an area of roughly 52,000 km² (20,000 sq mi).

The lakes are well connected by rivers and canals, to form an extensive system of waterways. The whole area has become a prime destination for yachtspeople and canoeists, and is also popular among anglers, hikers, bikers and nature-lovers.

Getting there

The Masurian region can be reached by train, bus, or car from anywhere in Poland or from Lithuania. The nearby international airports are in Warsaw, Gdansk, and Vilnius. The main transport hub in the region is the town of Ełk. There are trains to Masuria from Warsaw, Gdańsk and Vilnius, and buses to there can be found in many Polish cities. A boat service connects some central towns in the region. Biking and boating are popular ways to get around.

Accommodation

Hotels can be found mostly around the Great Masurian Lakes, namely in towns of Giżycko and Mikołajki, as well as in the larger town of Ełk. There are also guesthouses & campsites in villages and countryside areas of Masuria. English is spoken by many educated locals and those who work in tourism professions.

Masuria is famous for its thousands of lakes and nearby forests, offering a wide range of outdoor activities from sailing to kayaking and swimming. The region includes the largest lake in Poland, Śniardwy as well as small lake resort towns of Giżycko, Mikołajki, Ełk, Węgorzewo, Ryn, Pisz, and Iława.

Tourism in Masuria

The most popular tourism centers in Masuria are Mikołajki and Giżycko. Giżycko is located on the shore of Lake Niegocin, and has a historical fortress, and passenger boats to the towns of Węgorzewo, Mikołajki and Ruciane-Nida. The historical town of Mikołajki is also a popular tourism centre with a beautiful historic church and bridges. In addition to lakes, the Masurian region also has many rivers good for fishing and forest areas that offer many trails for trekking and biking.

Fauna & Flora

There is also a nice variety of wildlife, edible berries and mushrooms, and large protected areas, including the Masurian Landscape Park that includes 11 nature reserves such as the Łuknajno Lake that is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, or the Białowieża Forest with a breeding station for European Bisons.

Climate

Masuria has a temperate climate with cold winters and warm summers. The weather here is cooler than in most parts of Poland, and the area also has some snow during the winter. The Masurian lakes are usually frozen from December to the end of April. Springtime can be wet, while summers are generally drier.

The Lakes

With almost ten thousand closed bodies of water covering more than 1 hectare (2.47 acres) each, Poland has one of the highest number of lakes in the world. In Europe, only Finland has a greater density of lakes. The largest lakes, covering more than 100 square kilometres (39 sq mi), are Lake Śniardwy and Lake Mamry in Masuria, and Lake Łebsko and Lake Drawsko in Pomerania.

In addition to the lake districts in the north (in Masuria, Pomerania, Kashubia, Lubuskie, and Greater Poland), there is also a large number of mountain lakes in the Tatras, of which the Morskie Oko is the largest in area. The lake with the greatest depth—of more than 100 metres (328 ft)—is Lake Hańcza in the Wigry Lake District, east of Masuria in Podlaskie Voivodeship.


Sailing in Poland

On board!

If you’re coming to the country for dental treatment and you also wish to go sailing in Poland, you have some great options. If you have time on your hands, the Masurian lakes are a fantastic sailing destination. If time is short, then Gdynia for sailing and Gdansk for your dental treatment is an ideal solution.

Sailing in Poland may be best enjoyed in the region of the Great Masurian Lakes located in the north eastern part of the country. This lake district, with the highest concentration of lakes in Poland, picturesquely set among forests, attracts thousands of water sports enthusiasts.

The Masurian lake land boasts Poland’s largest lakes such as Lake Sniardwy (106 sq. km.) with eight islands and Lake Mamry (104.9 sq. km.) with thirty-three islands.

The scenic Masuria lakes district in Poland is a place of magical beauty, filled with historical sites and is unsurpassed as a sailing experience.

Ice sailing

In wintertime the lakes and canals of northeastern Poland turn into huge, flat and snow-covered ice fields. Over two thousand lakes of different acreage plus hundreds of rivers and canals are situated in that region. The Sniardwy, Mamry, Niegocin, Beldany and Nidzkie are the largest lakes.

In the northwestern part of the country there are also many lakes that freeze over in wintertime, however, they are not so large as those in northeastern Poland. The artificial water bodies by the dams in southern Poland freeze as well.

Very popular with sailors in summertime, all these natural and artificial lakes offer excellent conditions for iceboating in winter. Fans of ice sailing can find in Poland all they need: huge ice-covered areas and strong winds that allow them to reach great acceleration.

Gdynia

Gdynia can rightfully be referred to as the sailing capital of Poland. Every year a number of events of national, European, World or Olympic scale are held here. this is due to the excellent conditions in terms of both, the wind and the infrastructure.

Local residents and tourists can watch the races while walking along the beach or the promenade (Bulwar Nadmorski) – nearly two kilometres long. They can take part in the numerous accompanying events, like concerts or meetings. The contestants have an opportunity to relax after the competition, while the spectators can meet the chief players of the races.

There are also contests for young, novice sailors, on Optimist class boats. The passion with which they struggle with nature and the competitors in their little, blue-sailed boats is a pure demonstration of vitality and a lesson of coping with adversities for the spectators.

The best yachting facilities are in the marinas at Szczecin, Trzebiez, Leba, Gdynia, Gdansk and Gorki Zachodnie, where there are considerable local sailing communities. There are good marinas in Gdynia, which is municipal and has four yacht clubs, and in Gdansk on Motlawa River in the city centre.