Having recently returned from a 2 week trip Inter-railling around Eastern Europe with Ryan, I thought I’d write a collection of six short blogs documenting our time in each city.
As always, let me know if you have any questions/comments about my travels!
The first stop on our Inter-railing adventure was Poland’s capital city, Warsaw.
Completely destroyed during World War II, the city’s unique and varied architecture reflects its long turbulent past and it’s safe to say I couldn’t wait to explore the capital’s landmarks and museums. So here’s a snippet of what we got up to in 24 hours …
After seeing the museum listed on Lonely Planet’s ‘Top Experiences’, I was super excited to visit the iconic neon signs of the communist era displayed in a historic factory.
However, after a 45 minute trek to a complex of old industrial buildings in sweltering heat, we both found the museum very underwhelming, especially given the high entry cost for such a small collection of signs.
Despite this, it was pretty cool, so I would recommend a visit if you are nearby!
I love a castle it has to be said.
Located in the Castle Square in the middle of the Old Town, the castle is in fact a copy of the original blown up by the Germans in World War II and used to house the personal offices of the King and other officials until the Partitions of Poland 1772.
After finding the ticket office (an adventure in itself!) and using our student cards, we set off to explore the various art works and period furniture housed in the building.
The castle also contained various references to the Ancient World which, as a classics student, I absolutely loved.
For instance, the Knights Hall featured a quotation for Book VII of the Aeneid regarding the merits of outstanding citizens and statues of Fame and Chronos at either side of the room.
All in all, we really enjoyed our morning exploring the castle, from gazing at its marvellous art work and eye-pleasing decor to imagining the lives of the people who once lived and worked here.
A key tip is go early to avoid the hoards of tourists and groups if you are limited on time like us – our experience would’ve been less enjoyable if we had to queue to look at the paintings or enter the rooms.
A remaining relic of the historic fortifications that once encircled Warsaw, the Barbican is located between the Old and New Towns and is bustling with life.
From artists selling their works to tourists posing for photographs, it is a must see attraction, even if you are only passing through it like we did.
St. Florian’s Cathedral
Constructed in 1897 by architect Józef Pius Dziekońsk, this Catholic Church more formally known as St. Michael the Archangel showcases gothic architecture at its best.
As well as a place of religion, the cathedral’s 75 meter towers formed part of a protest against the erstwhile Russian domination of Poland, making it a historic landmark not to be missed.
The Old Town
Our final port of call was tea in the Old Town but choosing where to eat was extremely tricky given the variety of restaurants available!
We eventually settled for traditional Polish cuisine after a friend’s recommendation and we were so glad we did as it was simply delicious.
24 hours in Warsaw is simply not enough time to explore all this capital city has to offer.
For instance we missed out on quite a few museums that I personally wanted to go and explore due to time restraints. Despite this, I loved every second in Warsaw, from staring at neon lights to eating scrumptious food, so the unvisited museums provides us with another reason to revisit wonderful Warsaw!
Next stop on our adventure: Krakow, Poland.