Poland… have you ever heard of this country? Being a native Pole is sometimes funny, especially while being abroad. Usually, when people hear our language, they ask: Are you Russian? You sound like Russian. When we say where are we from, they reply: Ohhh Holland! How nice. Seriously, only a few people we met on the road could tell us ANYTHING about Poland. Most of them had no idea that this country even exists. Too bad! There are so many reasons you should travel Poland!
No, Polish is not Russian. It’s true that these languages sound similar but they are different. Holland is also a European country but it’s 6 times smaller than Poland. We just can’t understand why one of the biggest countries in Europe, the country with a rich history, friendly people, and delicious food is so underrated! It’s unbelievable! In this post, we will try to convince you to visit our homeland.
Here are the top reasons why it’s worth to travel to Poland:
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There are 1,269 nature reserves, 23 national parks, and a hundred bird sanctuaries in Poland.
Poland has direct access to the Baltic sea. There are many amazing, long and white-sand beaches in this country. It also has:
- beautiful mountains (like Bieszczady or Tatry)
- amazing forests (great for the mushroom hunting!)
- lovely lakes (Mazury or Morskie Oko recognized as one of the most beautiful lakes on the world by The Wall Street Journal)
- unspoilt nature and unique animals (like bisons in Bialowieza, the biggest mammals of Europe).
Poland has 4 seasons of the year and each of them is beautiful.
In summer, the smell of freshly cut grass, the refreshing touch of Baltic sea waves, the sound of birth singing in the morning will make you want to stay in Poland forever.
There is nothing more beautiful than watching the colorful leaves on the trees during the Polish autumn.
There are thousands of monuments in Poland, 16 of them are listed as Unesco World Heritage Sites.
Poland has a really rich history, so you will see unique monuments everywhere, no matter if it’s a big city, small town or a village. Churches, castles (like Lancut castle) tenements are only examples of the amazing architecture you can see in Poland.
No matter where you go, every place in Poland will have something interesting to offer. You will be surprised how diversified this country is. The buildings in the mountains are really high with pointed roofs, whereas old townhouses (like those in Krakow) are colorful and compact.
You could literally spend the whole day finding different building ornaments in cities like Gdansk.
Polish currency is zloty. 1 zloty is $0.26 and €0.23.
Traveling to Poland is cheap. Compared to famous European tourist destinations like Paris or London, the Polish prices are ridiculously low. You will pay half a price for the food, accommodation or transportation.
$5 for a two-course meal, $35 for a double room with private bathroom and king size bed sound reasonable, right?
Polish language is considered as one of the most difficult in the world.
Poland is a country with one of the richest histories in Europe. It’s unbelievable but it hasn’t existed for 123 years!
Polish neighbors (Russia, Germany, and Austro-Hungarian Empire) took away its entire land. Even though they were forbidding Poles to speak their own language and to celebrate their traditions, hey never stopped fighting.
Polish people never give up! Three generations of Poles must have fought to finally get back their freedom.
Despite the difficult past, Poles are one of the most friendly and hospitable people in Europe. Even though they are distanced at the beginning, they will always help you in need.
Getting around in Poland is easy. Buses, trains, and public transportation in general is easy to access all over the country.
Renting a car or driving won’t be a problem as well.
Polish cuisine consists mostly of flour, marjoram, potatoes, and meat.
Polish food is one of the best in Europe. It’s not only because of the taste but also because of the ingredients. The quality of Polish food is really high. Almost everything you can find in a grocery could be qualified as organic in countries like the US.
Food in Poland can’t be compared to anything else. You need to try it!
Have you heard of zurek? It’s a traditional Polish sour soup served with kielbasa (meat) and eggs. It tastes amazing.
You must have heard about pierogi though. Polish dumplings filled with potatoes and cottage cheese are a simple meal but you won’t be able to stop eating once you try them.
How about bigos? Made from fermented cabbage (it turns out kimchi is not the only one in the world) and kielbasa is a perfect idea for an unforgettable dinner.
And bread… It’s literally the best in the world! Always delicious, based on hundred years old recipes.
Sorry to tell you this but you will put on weight for sure after visiting Poland. And it’s not about the fattening food but because you won’t be able to resist eating more and more even though you are already full!
Poland’s greatest enemy, Adolf Hitler admitted that Poles are the most intelligent people he has ever met.
Polish people are honest. Sometimes too honest. They will tell you everything they think without worrying that you may not like it.
It may be dissuasive but that’s what beautiful about them. You will become their friends after a few minutes of talking. They may be distanced at the beginning but soon after a small talk, you will probably like each other. And they won’t stop unless you hurt them.
Did you know that Max Factor, the famous make-up artist was a native Pole? Or that we know that the sun is the center of the Universe because of Mikolaj Kopernik, a scientist born in Poland?
Did you know that people can diagnose and cure cancer because of the first woman- scientist, Marie Sklodowska- Curie, who invented radioactivity?
Or that thousands of people haven’t died because of the Polish invention, the bulletproof vest?
Do you like Häagen-Dazs ice cream? Well, it is also a Polish invention.
The list could go on and on, some other examples of Polish inventions are the hologram, the color photography, the kerosene lamp, mine detectors, the helicopter, the car wiper, and the Lunar Roving Vehicle (used in the famous Apollo mission).
Poland isn’t in the top 10 visited countries in Europe.
Poland is the most underrated country in the European Union. It’s unbelievable but somehow most tourists prefer to overpay in Berlin or get lost in the crowds of Prague. You won’t see many foreigners in Poland, so you will be able to truly discover its culture, enjoy a quiet moment close to nature or relax in a spa.
Poland is a really young country, it got back its freedom 30 years ago. It still doesn’t have an attention it deserves. But it will change soon for sure.
So don’t be late! Visit Poland before everyone else will. You won’t regret it.
Poland ranked #2 in the list of countries of vodka consumption per capita (the winner is of course Russia).
Did I say that most foreigners don’t know where Poland is? Well, there are some that have heard of this country. And all they can say is the magic word Polish vodka.
Yes, it’s true, Polish people LOVE alcohol. It may be vodka but they don’t despise beer, wine, champagne or anything that has percentages. It may sound funny but you actually won’t see many people wasted. That’s because Poles can drink an infinite amount of alcohol and they won’t be drunk. Practice makes perfect, right?
There is no party without alcohol in Poland, so it may not a place for you if you are abstinent. But once you see the Polish way of having fun, you will never forget it!
The most famous place for parties is Krakow.
Be sure to listen to this song as well:
No Language Barrier
Poles are one of the best non-native English speakers in the world.
Most Poles speak English very well. Poland is in the top 20 best EF English Proficiency ranking in the world!
So you won’t have any problem with communicating, no matter where you go. It will be easy for you to talk to the waiter in the restaurant in Krakow, ask for the way a random person on the street of Warsaw, or just have a little chat with a stranger you meet on the bus to Wroclaw.
If you want to know more, check out my post about the hidden gems of Poland.
Have a question? Join our Poland Travel Support Facebook group, we will be happy to help you!
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Have you been to Poland? Tell us about your experiences! I’d love to hear what you think about this amazing country. And remember, sharing is caring! Share your thoughts in comments.