Ten best museums in Poland

Booking.com describes Krakow's Polish Aviation Museum as "one of the best Aircraft Museums on the planet".
Booking.com describes Krakow’s Polish Aviation Museum as “one of the best Aircraft Museums on this planet”.

Booking.com published a top 10 list of the best Polish museums as voted for by the website’s users.

There are not that many surprises there, the entire list – maybe just with a couple of exceptions – is what you would normally find in each decent guide to Poland.

I’m not exactly sure how the list was compiled (I suspect algorithmically, based on the ratings), but it’s still a great overview of what people visit in Poland – from the well-known places like Auschwitz or Malbork Castle, to less-known gems like Galicia Jewish Museum or Polish Aviation Museum.

Some usual suspects are missing though and some less traditional museums have also been skipped, but that’s why you have me to bring you the rest, no?

Here’s the entire Booking.com Top 10:

1. Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, Oswiecim

2. Warsaw Uprising Museum, Warsaw

3. Polish Aviation Museum, Krakow

4. Rynek Underground, Krakow

5. Majdanek National Museum, Lublin

6. Malbork Castle (Muzeum Zamkowe w Malborku), Malbork

7. Cracow Saltworks Museum, Wieliczka

8. Galicia Jewish Museum, Krakow

9. Jewish Museum and Synagogue Auschwitz, Oswiecim

10. Museum at Market Square (Muzeum Mista Krakowa), Krakow

Poland is beautiful

This video turned out to be very popular when I posted it on my Facebook page yesterday, so I thought  I’d add it here too for those of you not on Facebook. (But if you ARE on Facebook, have you liked our page?)

This film is almost a by-product of several campaigns done by a Polish ad agency for their clients. They combined the unused footage into a 4-minute video, which so far has attracted over 1.4 million views on You Tube.

The film shows beautifully shot aerial views of many picturesque corners of Poland: from the wide sandy beaches of the Baltic Sea to the greenery of the Polish mountains in the south.

Can you name them? Can you name the cities featured? Go on, impress me… (TIP: The clues are there if you watch to the end…)

Has your perception of Poland changed?

Warsaw by Adam Smok via Flickr, used under the Creative Commons licence
Warsaw by Adam Smok via Flickr, used under the Creative Commons licence

Poland has been a member of the European Union for over ten years now. A lot has changed during the past ten years.

Many more Poles than ever before live and work in the UK and other EU countries. Lots of foreigners from the same EU countries have moved to, and live in Poland too.

Poland’s Donald Tusk is now the president of the European Council, Poland has tragically lost its president and a number of high-profile politicians in the tragic plane crash in 2010.

It’s also successfully co-hosted the European Football Championships in 2012 and has become more prominent on the international scene.

There have been many more good and bad headlines featuring Poland and its citizens in the British – and international – press, the country itself has transformed enormously and it’s attracted a lot of new tourists, investors and, hopefully, fans.

But are you one of them? Has your perception of the country changed over the past decade? I’d be curious to find out, regardless of whether you live in or outside of Poland.

Here’s a very short poll, but if you feel you want to elaborate on this question, please leave a comment below.

Has your perception of Poland changed over the past 10 years?

View Results

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The feeling of Poland

What does Poland feel like? This lovely video by Maggie Olkuska should give you a flavour of Poland.

Watched over 130,000 times, this video was shot by Maggie in 2012, when she decided to visit Poland with her camera. She backpacked all across the country to capture the essence of the place and its people.

She wrote:

Poland is a country with a very brutal past, really.. the World Wars, Holocaust… but I believe that all these experiences only made the nation stronger! As I experienced through my journey – Polish people are so hardworking, very hospitable, very ambitious; there are so many passionate artists, musicians, writers, filmmakers there… ! Moreover, when a Pole decides that he’s going to achieve something, a goal, a dream – I bet you – he will!!! (*and he is going to be passionate about it!*)

Need I say more?


The feeling of POLAND from Maggie Olkuska on Vimeo.

Warsaw street fashion

“Warsaw is more hipster than Paris, which is elegant.” Now, I’m not sure this is a good thing, but this is what I learned from this New York Times video about what people in Poland wear these days.

The video’s title is self-explanatory: “Intersection: Divided Styles in Warsaw”.  Like everywhere in Poland, Warsaw has its share of fashionistas and a lot of people, for whom fashion is still decided by the price tag. And Plac Zbawiciela, which features in this clip – a more upmarket and liberal part of central Warsaw – is no different.

Even in this video the clash is pretty evident.

And hopefully the clip will also dispel certain myths about how people dress in Poland and if you’ve never been there – no, we don’t wear bear skin coats. *eye roll*