The 10 Best Things to See in Warsaw


Warsaw: A Cold City With a Lot of History

For my first international trip to 2015 I was joined by my mom and we went to Warsaw. I know not everyone's first choice for Valentine's Day weekend, but for a city completely destroyed by war it offers a lot of beauty. We saw the beautiful downtown and the uniform socialist buildings. We even made it as far as the areas you don't want to find yourself alone in. And even though I was sick and didn't speak a word of the language, I'm happy to say that I've finally made it to Poland. 

10. Ghetto Wall: the only reason why this made the list is because of its importance in history. This is one of the remaining fragments of the Warsaw Ghetto Wall. So you get this idea of it being very important and that there would be a big memorial. But no. Instead it's impossible to find in a very sketchy area and it's practically inaccessible when the gates are closed. It was sad seeing such an important piece of history so poorly taken care of. But nevertheless, it's an important thing to see.

9. Warsaw Uprising Monument: with so many monuments in Warsaw it's hard to just pick one. But the one that stood out the most to me was the monument of the Warsaw Uprising because of its size, it's beauty, and the sense of importance. You can tell that the people of Warsaw are proud of their heroes today.

8. Jewish Cemetery: like Père Lachaise in Paris, this cemetery holds a lot of history. Some graves have been there for hundreds of years, other for just a couple. It's beautiful with the trees growing in between the graves and the moss growing on the tombs. And while some people were a little shocked that we went there, I believe that you don't have to be Jewish to appreciate the history.

Ghetto Wall
7. Palace of Culture and Science: this building that resembles the Empire State Building made it on my list because of its history. Stalin had it built for the Polish people after the war and it is the tallest building in between Berlin and Moscow. And while it does have some beauty and is an immense display of power, the poles have another name for it: Stalin's penis. I think the sassiness of the Poles is what put this building on the list.

6. Polish Army Museum: gotta love me some army museums! While it may not have as much as the one in Paris, it was still cool to see. From the knights to the guns of World War II, this museum had something for everyone that likes history. And after seeing so many army museums, it was neat to compare the style (and sometimes flare) of each country.

Castle Square
5. Castle Square: in old town stand a beautiful castles that looks Russian in style, next to a beautiful church and fragments of the castle wall. But what makes this square so beautiful is its view over the river along with the colorful buildings. Much of this was rebuilt after the war, but they rebuilt it exactly the same.

4. Warsaw Uprising Museum: this is probably one of the best museums that I have visited in a while because of its setup. Today museums have to be modern to catch your interest while still providing a lot of artifacts and information. I think that this museum had a good balance of that and what I loved was that every station allowed you to collect papers explaining the events. As a teacher I loved this because I can use them in the future. The museum explained the fighting that took place in Warsaw from the perspective of the insurgents. Make sure to visit this if you are ever in Warsaw.

3. St. Anne's Church: Poland has so many churches it'd hard to choose just one. But St. Anne's church was absolutely beautiful. It's exterior is pretty, but the interior is breathtaking. It's painted ceilings, crystal chandeliers, and gold adorned everything really make this one of the most memorable churches that I've seen.

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
2. Tomb of the Unknown Soldier: these memorials are always a must see for me when I travel. While I don't agree with war, I do believe in paying respect for those brave enough to defend their countries. And this beautiful memorial does just that. And we were lucky enough to see the changing of the guard, and I have to say, polish soldiers are very good looking!

1. Old Town Square: for a city completely destroyed by war, they really rebuilt it exactly the same. So much so that the old town of Warsaw is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The buildings are a beautiful mixture of colors and Belle Époque style. The streets are cobblestones and every building is unique in its beauty. This is a must see of the city.   

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