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Things to do in Warsaw

Things to do in  Warsaw

Welcome to Warsaw

Warsaw has emerged from the war-torn destruction of World War II as a resplendent city, and Poland’s capital now thrums with an energy all its own. A colorful confection of 17th-century townhouses gives Old Town Square Market enchanting charm; the Warsaw Jewish Ghetto (Getto Zydowskie) is a poignant reminder of the past; and St. John’s Cathedral (Katedra Sw Jana) never fails to impress with its Gothic grandeur. See all of the visual treats and more on a sightseeing tour—explore in a Communist-era van or retro Fiat, on a Segway, or on a walking tour. Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum near Krakow, a former Nazi concentration camp, makes for an accessible day trip, and offers insight into Poland’s sobering past; while excursions to Gdansk and medieval Malbork showcase the beauty of Poland’s architecture. Music lovers can enjoy a Frederic Chopin piano concerto or visit the birthplace of the renowned composer in Masovian Country, revelers can capture Warsaw’s party spirit on a bar crawl, culture connoisseurs can learn about the city’s communist and Jewish heritage at the Life Under Communism Museum (Czar PRL), and history buffs can admire countless historic monuments on The Royal Way in Warsaw, home to the Royal Castle and Wilanow Palace.

Top 10 attractions in Warsaw

#1
Praga

Praga

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Praga is Warsaw’s right-bank area that was once an independent town, from the time of its first mention in 1432. In the late 18th century, it became formally associated with Warsaw as a small settlement.In its early days as a suburb, many buildings were repeatedly destroyed by natural disasters and military battles; the only surviving historical monument from that time is the Church of Our Lady of Loreto.Although it suffered repeated damage in its early days, Praga managed to resist WWII destruction, and today, it’s considered one of Warsaw’s trendiest neighborhoods, oozing a cool bohemian vibe. Post-industrial buildings have been converted into art galleries, cinemas, and pubs. Also look for pre-war elements like sidewalks, apartments and lampposts.Praga is quite a departure from the well-traveled tourist spots in Warsaw proper. Its popularity is on the rise, so now is the best time to visit. Don’t miss historic monuments like Agnieszka Osiecka, ode to the Polish poet and journalist who authored over 2,000 songs; Kapela Podwórkowa, a tribute to pre-war cloth-capped buskers and musicians known as The Courtyard Band; and Monument of Kościuszko Division (Pomnik Kościuszkowców), a tribute to the 1st Tadeusz Kościuszko Infantry Division, who tried to help during the Warsaw Uprising in 1944.More
#2
Warsaw Jewish Ghetto (Getto Zydowskie)

Warsaw Jewish Ghetto (Getto Zydowskie)

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The haunting monuments and memorials of Warsaw’s former Jewish Ghetto (Getto Zydowskie) tell the story of its tragic past—during World War II, it was the largest Jewish Ghetto in all of Nazi-occupied Europe.More
#3
Warsaw Old Town (Stare Miasto)

Warsaw Old Town (Stare Miasto)

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Almost entirely destroyed during WWII, Warsaw’s historic Warsaw Old Town (Stare Miasto) underwent an extensive restoration that transformed the area into a vibrant riverfront hub. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the neighborhood boasts striking recreations of 17th- and 18th-century structures, as well as the Warsaw History Museum.More
#4
St. John's Archcathedral (Archikatedra Sw. Jana)

St. John's Archcathedral (Archikatedra Sw. Jana)

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This stunning Gothic cathedral in the heart of Warsaw's Old Town is one of the most interesting historical landmarks. Built in the 14th century, St John's Cathedral - or Katedra Sw Jana - is one of the oldest churches in all of Poland, but was completely destroyed during World War II during the Polish Uprising. However, like much of the Old Town, it was reconstructed after the war, true to its original architecture.In addition to being the site of many historical events, such as the coronation of the last Polish king, the cathedral also houses the beautiful red marble tombs of many Mazowian dukes, and its crypt is the resting place of many celebrated Poles such as Nobel Prize-winning author Henryk Sienklewicz. The Gothic architecture and artwork is some of the most impressive in Warsaw, and is not to be missed.More
#5
Warsaw Royal Castle (Zamek Krolewski)

Warsaw Royal Castle (Zamek Krolewski)

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Rebuilt following the destruction of World War II, the Royal Castle stands watch over the entrance to Warsaw Old Town. Explore beyond the brick facade to find a trove of historic furniture, artwork, and gilded decor. From the Great Apartments to the Throne Room, Warsaw Royal Castle showcases centuries of Warsaw history.More
#6
Palace of Culture and Science (Palac Kultury i Nauki)

Palace of Culture and Science (Palac Kultury i Nauki)

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A towering 758 feet (231 meters) high, Warsaw’s Palace of Culture and Science was commissioned by Stalin during Poland’s communist era. Today, the country’s tallest building comprises concert halls, offices, shops, restaurants, and a 30th-floor viewing terrace.More
#7
Warsaw Old Town Market Square (Rynek Starego Miasta)

Warsaw Old Town Market Square (Rynek Starego Miasta)

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The Old Town Square Market - or Rynek Starego Miasta - is the oldest part of Warsaw, originally constructed in the late 13th century. After being destroyed by the German army, it was restored after World War II to its beautiful prewar charm, lined with 17th and 18th century houses, shops, and restaurants. The historic center of Warsaw, cafe life is at its height with street vendors and performers abound.Stop to try a local beer or taste traditional Polish fare and admire the incredible architecture all around you. A UNESCO World Heritage site, this area is not to be missed.More
#8
Museum of Life Under Communism (Muzeum Zycia w PRL)

Museum of Life Under Communism (Muzeum Zycia w PRL)

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Part of the Adventure Warsaw attraction — which runs Communist-themed tours of the city — at the Soho Factory in bohemian, grungy Praga, the Life Under Communism Museum highlights the mundane, cheerless quality of life under the Soviet regime in Poland. Previously knownas Czar PRL, it's now called Muzeum Życia w PRL, which literally translates as Museum of Life in the Polish People's Republic.The Poles and the extraordinarily powerful Solidarity freedom movement, led by Lech Wałęsa, voted the Communist system out in the 1989 elections, leading to the break up of the Soviet Union. Although there is no sentimentality in Poland towards the former Communist regime, this clever little museum allows younger generations to glimpse life behind the Iron Curtain as it was for 45 years.Among the busts of Lenin and Marx in the Museum of Life Under Communism are a scattering of Soviet uniforms, Communist-era radios and record player spinning vinyl from little-known Eastern Bloc bands. However, the highlights of the exhibition are the rudimentary rooms kitted out in typical Soviet style with austere furniture — some sourced from the former headquarters of the Polish United Workers’ Party (PZPR) and more donated from the general public. The sparse kitchen has a 1980s’ cooker and fridge; a rather depressing beige bedroom has a simple wooden bed and the walls of a party worker’s office are hung with portraits of Communist leaders. And this privately owned museum just keeps on growing, with the curators appealing for any artifacts that belong to the Communist era to use in their displays.More
#9
Warsaw Royal Route (Trakt Królewski)

Warsaw Royal Route (Trakt Królewski)

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Originally used as a communication route, Warsaw's famous Royal Way (or Royal Route) is a beautiful, 2.5 mile-(4 km) long road that goes from the The Royal Palace at Old Town to the Wilanow Palace. Walking this road assures you an incredible view of Polish historical landmarks, including St. Anne's Church, the Tyszkiewicz Palace, the Holy Cross Church, St. Alexander's Church, Lazienki Park, and so much more. An entire day can be spent exploring the monuments and side streets that are considered part of the "Road of Kings", and there are innumerable sights to be seen.An impressive monument to the Polish composerChopin sits in the Lazienki park, and during the summer, classical musical concerts are held on the lawn. In addition to being the living quarters of many Polish nobles, including the Polish president, museums, chic shopping, people-watching, and fine eateries are abound on this most beautiful and historic of streets.More
#10
Wilanow Palace (Museum of King Jan III)

Wilanow Palace (Museum of King Jan III)

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One of the only landmarks in Warsaw to remain untouched by the World Wars, the stunning Wilanow Palace is one of the most beautiful buildings in Poland. Stroll around the incredible gardens, take in the Gallery of Polish Portraiture, or just take in the ornateness andsplendorof both the interior and exterior design of the Palace.Built for King John III Sobieski in the late 17th century, the Wilanow Palace is considered to be one of the major masterpieces of Polish architecture, and is often referred to as the "Polish Versailles". Be sure to make time for the gardens, which can be just as engrossing as the palace itself.More

Trip ideas

How to Spend 1 Day in Warsaw

How to Spend 1 Day in Warsaw

How to Spend 2 Days in Warsaw

How to Spend 2 Days in Warsaw

How to Spend 3 Days in Warsaw

How to Spend 3 Days in Warsaw

Top activities in Warsaw

Recent reviews from experiences in Warsaw

star-5
Excellent experience
Emilie_M, Oct 2021
Segway Tour of Warsaw: 3-Hour Full Guided Tour
It was also a great way to see different parts of the city that we wouldn't have seen otherwise.
star-5
So much fun!
Semmes_H, Sep 2021
90-Minutes Segway Historical Old Town Tour in Warsaw
I great way to see Warsaw.
star-5
This is the best way to...
Darko_L, Aug 2021
Half-Day Warsaw City Sightseeing Bike Tour for Small Group
This is the best way to see Warsaw.
star-5
Go, you'll be pleased that you did!
Simon_H, Aug 2021
TOUR PACKAGE: The Shooting range professional course /inc. Pick-up/
Great service from the very friendly guide who spoke very good English (which put my very poor attempts to speak Polish to shame) and also from the company providing the visit to the shooting range itself.
star-5
Truly interesting day spent with a fantastic guide Jerzy
Simon_H, Aug 2021
Warsaw: Private Guided Tour to Majdanek Concentration Camp
He also ended our day by giving me very helpful tips about what to see during the rest of my time in Warsaw.
star-5
Excellent behind the scenes Tour
William, Mar 2020
Warsaw Behind the Scenes - small group tour by retro minibus
Excellent way to see Warsaw.
star-5
Nice tour!
Michael_C, Nov 2019
Warsaw Morning, Guided, social-distance bus, city tour with hotel pickup&dropoff
The cold in November did not bother us b/c we wore our winter gear.
star-5
What a Treat!
Richard_B, Oct 2019
Private Tour: Warsaw City Sightseeing by Retro Fiat
A fascinating Warsaw iverview Olga was very knowledgable and spoke excellent English.
star-5
Interesting and informative
lyndaharland, Oct 2019
Half Day City Sightseeing Tour of Warsaw
Very good guide, older gentleman with excellent sense of humour, great English and very interesting.
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Warsaw private tour by retro fiat
Barbi_S, Sep 2019
Private Tour: Warsaw City Sightseeing by Retro Fiat
He was very friendly and informative and took us to see all the great sights, took some photos and even bought us traditional polish donuts..
star-5
Highly recommended!
jacobmfeinstein, Sep 2019
Discover the Dark Side of Warsaw in Praga District by Retro Bus
I came to to visit my friend who lives in Warsaw and took her along on this tour.
star-5
Delightful afternoon
mumzycath, Aug 2019
Half-Day Polish Food Walking Tour with Guide and Dinner
Guide was very knowledgeable about the history of Poland especially Warsaw and had great English - great variety of foods at nice restaurants - highly recommend
star-5
Fantastic
Launa_E, Aug 2019
Warsaw Afternoon, guided, social-distance bus, city tour with pick up&drop off
Great way to see Warsaw.
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Great guide through much of Warsaw
Megan_K, May 2019
Warsaw Afternoon, guided, social-distance bus, city tour with pick up&drop off
The best way to see much of Warsaw’s most iconic sites in just a few hours.
star-5
Day trip to Auschwitz from Warsaw
alicepagelai, Jul 2018
Auschwitz Small Group Tour from Warsaw with Lunch
It's worth driving 4 hours to see the place.
star-5
Best Tour Ever!
CliffordC_C, Sep 2018
Warsaw Behind the Scenes - small group tour by retro minibus
His knowledge and EXCELLENT English made the tour very enjoyable and our group of 4 loved every minute of it.
star-5
This tour is awesome! You get to drive...
Bianca B, Oct 2016
Retro Fiat Self-Drive Undisovered Tour in Warsaw
If you have anything specific that you want to see or know about, they will absolutely try to make it happen.
star-5
Warsaw s a really spread out large...
Dominic B, May 2015
City Sightseeing Warsaw Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour
Warsaw s a really spread out large city the hop on hop off bus enabled us to see all the major sights and then concentrate on the ones that interested us.
star-5
This tour gave us a great overview...
Sharon V, Oct 2017
Small-Group Historical Guided Tour of Warsaw with pick up/drop off. Public Tour.
My only wish was that we had more time in the city to visit some of the places and spend more time.
star-5
This was a wonderful insight into...
Priscilla P, Jun 2017
Small-Group Historical Guided Tour of Warsaw with pick up/drop off. Public Tour.
This was a wonderful insight into Warsaw in a few hours, we got a general overview of the city, with a knowledgeable and experienced guide, whose English was excellent.

All about Warsaw

When to visit

Warsaw celebrates summer with a jam-packed roster of outdoor festivals such as Midsummer’s Eve, Warsaw Fashion Street, and Summer Jazz Days. Be sure to pack an umbrella as, even in summer, rainstorms are likely. In early fall, crowds disperse and hotel prices drop, and October sees the Warsaw Film Festival kick off.

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