A land of spectacular cities and castles

Strategically located between the superpowers of Germany and Russia, Poland’s history was never going to be dull. Stretching back over 1,000 years, Poland’s tumultuous history has defined modern day Poland and it’s evident everywhere you turn. You can see it in the buildings of the beautiful and historic medieval and gothic city centres at Wroclaw, Gdansk and Krakow as well as in the castles at Książ Castle and Malbork. The more recent and tragic past is also evident at the Auschwitz Birkenau Museum and the countless memorials and historic sites honouring the millions of deaths inflicted on Poland during World War 2. 

Poland isn’t however a country living in the past. Since shaking off the Communist shackles in 1990, the country has emerged as one of Europe’s fastest growing economies. Cities have been rebuilt and redefined with the capital city, Warsaw one of Europe’s most vibrant and exciting cities. Elsewhere in the country you’ll discover fine forests and national parks, beaches along it’s Baltic coastline as well as mountains and great hiking along it’s southern border. Add into the mix a varied and tasty cuisine and you’ve got a truly captivating destination.

Historic Gdansk waterfront
The long historic waterfront in Gdansk is one of Poland's best sights.


Present day Poland is located in Central Europe and shares land borders with no less than 7 other countries. To the west lies Germany and the Czech Republic while Slovakia lies to the south. In the east there are borders with Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania and Kalingrad, an exclave of Russia. To the north lies the Baltic Sea, which is Poland’s only coastline. The country is divided into 16 provinces or voivodeships. The largest and wealthiest of these is Mazowieckie, which is home to Poland’s capital city of Warsaw.

Best time to visit Poland

Poland’s different seasons play a big part in determining when the best time is to visit this intriguing country. It has 4 very distinct seasons, characterised by long warm summer days and cold short winter days. Spring tends to be cool and wet, while the autumn is largely mild and dry. This all means that the summer and the autumn are typically the best times to visit.

Poland’s pleasant summer conditions haven’t been lost on visitors though and the summer months see a large influx of tourists into the country. This is especially true during July and August, which is the main summer vacation period in Europe. However following the end of the summer vacation period at the end of August, visitor numbers drop dramatically, even while the weather remains relatively warm and dry. Therefore a visit in September or early October tends to be best, balancing the weather, crowds and cost perfectly.

View of Malbork Castle
Malbork Castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the worlds largest castle.

Best Things to see in Poland

Poland’s intriguing history as well as its medieval and gothic cities are the country’s big attraction. While the cities are well known for their beautiful central squares and colourful period buildings, they’re also home to some exceptional lesser known museums. This is especially true of Warsaw and to a lesser extent the city of Gdansk. Regardless of where you go in Poland, you’ll always discover fine architecture, fascinating history and intriguing museums.

Aerial view of the centre of Wroclaw
Rebuilt and restored after WW2, Wroclaw is one of Poland's most beautiful cities.

Best cities to visit in Poland

Poland is home to some of the finest medieval and gothic cities in the whole of Europe. Despite the destruction of World War 2, many of these have been restored to their spectacular original states.

Our top 5 cities to visit in Poland are:

  1. Krakow
  2. Warsaw
  3. Gdansk
  4. Wroclaw
  5. Torun

Best museums to visit in Poland

There’s a wealth of museums in Poland, many dealing with the legacy of World War 2. Regardless of the theme of the museum, you’ll find Polish museums are all beautifully curated and well set out.

Our top 5 best museums to visit in Poland are:

  1. Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum, Oswiecim
  2. Wieliczka Salt Mine, Krakow
  3. National Museum, Warsaw
  4. Museum of the Second World War, Gdansk
  5. Warsaw Uprising Museum, Warsaw

Best castles to visit in Poland

Poland is home to some unique and fascinating castles. While other European countries are more renowned for their castles, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at what Poland has to offer.

Our top 5 best castles to visit in Poland are:

  1. Książ Castle, Wałbrzych
  2. Malbork Castle, Malbork
  3. Wawel Royal Castle, Krakow
  4. Moszna Castle, Moszna
  5. Royal Castle, Warsaw

Explore our Poland trip ideas and itineraries

Visiting Auschwitz

Poland Guide and Blog Archive

Best Cities to Visit in Poland

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