Warsaw. One city, two faces
Each city has a place that is its showcase and a must-see on any trip. In Warsaw, it’s the Old Town, entered on the UNESCO World Heritage List – it’s where the city’s heart has been beating for centuries. However, when you cross the Vistula River and look at the Old Town from a distance, you are struck by how unusual the panorama of the city is – skyscrapers rise above the red roofs of the Old Town. Historical buildings blend in harmoniously with modern architecture, and the city surprises us by revealing its second face.
Although Warsaw is one of the most rapidly developing cities in Europe with huge potential and extraordinary energy, its residents like to look back on its history and are able to skilfully combine tradition and modernity. When you look around the city, you will see that both of its sides permeate at every step in a surprising and unique way.
When you stroll along the Royal Route that links the former residences of Polish rulers, go down to the Vistula River to see the modern boulevards stretching between the Multimedia Fountain Park and the Copernicus Science Center. During the summer, the city vibrates with life – the cafés and bars open up and dance parties and open-air concerts take place. Meanwhile, the other shore retains its natural character, which is unique in Europe and delights all visitors. There you will find sandy beaches, bike paths and excellent conditions for water sports.
Almost half the area of the city is green. There are as many as 95 parks with Łazienki heading the list. In the summer, the famous Chopin Concerts take place in a unique outdoor setting, while in the historical interiors of the theatre founded by King Stanisław August you can hear music by contemporary composers.
Warsaw has a rich calendar of musical, cultural and sports events. Festivals, star concerts and outdoor exhibitions take place throughout the year. 2018 will be marked by the celebration of the 100th anniversary of Poland regaining independence. The culmination of the year-long celebration will be November’s Great Warsaw Polonaise, when residents and tourists will be invited to dance.
Interactive museums will help you understand the history of the city. The Warsaw Rising Museum is dedicated to the event that shaped the contemporary face of the capital. The POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews, which received the prestigious title of European Museum of the Year 2016, shows the 1000-year-old Jewish presence in Warsaw, and at the same time is an excellent example of contemporary architecture.
The combination of tradition and modernity is also evident in the city’s architecture. An example of this is Hala Koszyki, a historic commercial building from the beginning of the 20th century, carefully restored, which now houses numerous bars and restaurants and is now one of Warsaw’s favourite culinary destinations.
Warsaw will positively surprise you in many ways. Just give it a chance and plan your trip now.