Given Warsaw’s war-torn history, it would be easy to forgive it for trying to forget its trouble past. But far from giving up after being flattened by Nazi Germany, the city has embraced its heritage and is now racing forwards to prosperity. The capital boasts the country’s best Museums, not least the incredible Warsaw Rising Museum, an ingenious interactive exhibition which remembers the brave citizens of the Warsaw Uprising who valiantly fought for their independence. The Museum of Polish Jews is a similarly high-tech marvel which looks back on 1000 years of Jewish history in Poland. Aside from Museums and history, Warsaw also offers several architectural masterpieces. Wilanow Palace was built as a royal summer residence and thankfully its impressive statues, murals and pillars remained untouched during WW2. The Royal Castle wasn’t so lucky but has been faithfully restored to its original version. This includes a magnificent Great Assembly Hall, with replica 18th-century decor of dazzling golden columns and a vast ceiling painting. The Old Town has been similarly rebuilt, and is an excellent blend of Renaissance and Gothic architecture which once stood there.
Where is it?
In east-central Poland, on the banks of the Vistula River.
What is it?
The capital city has endured innumerable hardships, but is fast becoming one of the most important political and economic hubs of Europe. Warsaw is a history lover’s dream, and is taking full advantage of its economic and historical wealth with its ground-breaking museums.
Best time to visit?
Springtime is Warsaw’s best season to visit. In May and June the city has fully escaped its bitter winter season, and the spring avoids the high tourist season in the summer months.
The Lazienki park and palace complex. Established in the 17th century, the beautiful landscape gardens feature several remarkable architectural monuments, the most important of which include the Island Palace built for King Stanislaw August Poniatowski, Poland’s last monarch.