Warsaw sights and attractions


Warsaw, as the capital city of Poland, functions as a cultural centre; there is no shortage of numerous monuments, galleries or parks here; everything based on the history of our country.  It is the biggest and the most dynamically developing town of Poland.  It is here that thousands of tourists come from Poland as well as from the entire world every year in order to take a closer look at the culture and the history of our country.  As one of the European capital cities, it is teeming with many tourist attractions, which it is not possible to visit even within a week.

The Warsaw Uprising Museum

The Warsaw Uprising Museum

Warsaw has a very large number of museums i.e. 60 and 38 galleries in its historical heritage.  While starting touring such numerous monuments, one should begin from the Warsaw Uprising Museum.  It is one of the best and the most visited museums, which can be seen in the capital and which is very popular among tourists.  An interesting fact is that it is located in a former tram depot.  It was opened on the 60th anniversary of the Uprising i.e. on the 1st August 2004.  The very entry to the museum is already very impressive; everything seems to be very real and encourage visitors to continue the tour.  It is possible to take a closer and realistic look at the events as well as the everyday living conditions under the German occupation in 1944.  The exhibition is located in the middle of the museum and occupies as many as three storeys.

The Royal Baths Park - Hunting Palace

The Royal Baths Park - Hunting Palace

The Royal Baths Park in Warsaw

One of the very beautiful gardens, which attracts many visitors not only from Poland but also from other countries, is the Royal Baths Park in Warsaw also called Łazienki Park.  The complex consists of an 80 ha park with extremely beautiful greenery in the very centre of the town as well as a large number of historic buildings.  It is necessary to emphasize that Łazienki Park is one of the most beautiful tourist attractions not only in Poland but also in Europe.  Łazienki Park delights not only with its area abounding with monuments but also with the diverse flora.  The enthusiasts of the flora can admire not only a domestic but also foreign flora here.  There are almost 10000 all sorts of trees and bushes here.  These are species of trees already 300 old that are very interesting for visitors.   Looking through the pages of the history, we will learn that this beautiful garden acquired the charming shape thanks to Stanislaus Augustus Poniatowski.

The Royal Castle

The Royal Castle in Warsaw

Warsaw, as one of the European capital cities, has many historical gems worth touring and watching.  One of such gems is the Royal Castle in Warsaw, which cannot be omitted while travelling to Warsaw.  The Royal Castle is one of the most important tourist attractions not only in the capital but also in the entire Poland.  Historians call it the crowning monument of our country.  Behind the walls of this beautiful castle it is possible to find treasures of the history.  This building is rich in numerous permanent exhibitions i.e. a ballroom, a mirror room, a throne room, the royal bedroom and many other originally saved rooms or chambers.  The inside of the castle, and more precisely apartments, have been reconstructed in the style of the King August.

 The Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw

The Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw

There are many towns abounding with monuments in Poland and Warsaw is one of them.  The largest town of our country being at the same time its capital city.  The most important events for our country take place here.  Each year, Warsaw attracts more and more tourists, wanting to get to know charming monuments and architecture hidden in the big town.  Warsaw is famous for its beautiful and interesting sights and buildings, which hide the secrets of the history of our country.  While being in the capital city, it is impossible not to notice a large building towering above the town.  This mysterious and great building is the Palace of Science and Culture enjoying the great interest of tourists arriving here not only from Poland but also from the entire world.  While going back in the history, it is necessary to remind that this building had the name of Josef Stalin before.  It is in the pages of history that it is recorded as a gift of the Soviet people for the Polish people, what raises many controversies amongst residents of the capital city as well as Polish authorities till today.

Warsaw tower blocks

Warsaw tower blocks – it is among Warsaw tower blocks that a real blend of nationalities appears, although there is no lack of typical Polish buildings: the Palace of Culture and Science is a Soviet tower block, Novotel Hotel Warsaw Centre (former Forum) as well as Intraco I are Swedish, Millennium Plaza is a Turkish building and Warsaw Trade Tower is Korean.  It is in the capital city that there are almost 40 tower blocks, including 5 not completed yet.  These are the highest buildings in the country at the same moment. 17 tower blocks have a height of over 100 metres.  The highest building in the town is the Palace of Culture and Science mentioned already above and built in 1955.  It is 231 metres high and consists of 42 storeys.  The second place is occupied by the Warsaw Trade Tower; 208 metres high and 45 storeys, built in 1999.  The lowest tower block in Warsaw is so-called PASTa that is the seat of the Polish Telephone Joint – stock Company.  It is the oldest tower block of the capital city at the same time: it was built in 1908, is 60 metres high and has 11 storeys.  A large number of tower blocks in the capital city classify Warsaw at the forefront of the highest European cities (the 5th place after Moscow, Paris, Frankfurt am Main and London).  It is according to the capital expansion plans that the construction of next tower blocks is expected.  The construction of the 350 metres high Orco-Orbis Tower is foreseen.

The Column of the King Sigismund III Vasa

The Column of the King Sigismund III Vasa – this monument is one of the most characteristic objects in Warsaw.  It was erected on the initiative of Władysław IV Vaza in honour of his father Zygmunt III Vasa in the years 1643 – 1644.  Two architects were the initiators of the column project: Augustyn Locci and Constantino Tencalli.  The monument is 22 metres high.  The figure of the king in a knight’s armour, with a sabre with a cross in a hand and a crown measures 275 cm.  In the night from 1st on 2nd September 1944, the column was destroyed by a bullet from a German tank cannon.  In 1949, the column was reconstructed; a new core was made of Strzegom granite and the figure of the sovereign received the left hand, the sabre and the cross as well as many smaller damages were repaired.  The official unveiling of the rebuilt monument took place on the 22nd July 1949.  The remains of the old column can be seen in the vicinity of the Royal Castle.   The sabre of the king is associated with a legend that dropping the sabre by the king heralded disasters and the fall of the town.

Barbican

Barbican

Barbican is a part of defensive walls of Warsaw.  It was built in 1548 and is easy to see while walking from the Old Town to the New Town.  The building was built according to the project of a Venetian Giovanni Battista.  Barbican along with the adjacent Łazienkowska Gate and the Gunpowder Tower constituted the so-called Zakroczymska Gate. The barbican performed the defensive function only once – during the Swedish invasion. In the 18th century, the Barbican was partly pulled down and then its part was included in newly built tenements. Right before the World War II, one managed to reconstruct the western part of the Barbican bridge.  The project was supervised by the architect Jan Zachwatowicz. During the World War II, the barbican was destroyed; its reconstruction lasted from 1952 till 1954.  The works were supervised by Wacław Padlewski; the old seventeenth century drawings were used for the purpose and the bricks from tenements pulled down in Nysa and Wrocław were used for construction.

Read more:

Warsaw sights part 2

Warsaw sights part 3

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