Warsaw & surroundings

From being the seat of the Polish monarchy and the home of the composer, Chopin, Warsaw became the backdrop of World War II tragedy and the triumphant fall of Communism.

 

The city tour will surprise and delight anyone who loves fine architecture, beautiful parks and vibrant capital cities as well as giving a sense of the important role Warsaw has played in modern history.

 

  • Old Town

1 old town

The tour starts at the hub of the Old Town: Market Square and continues with St. John’s Cathedral, the Barbican and Castle Square; a drive along the Royal Route with its numerous churches, monuments, historic buildings and palaces, past the Parliament; a walk through the grand Łazienki Park with its Palace on the Water, and Chopin’s monument. On the way back, there is a pause to pay respects at the former Jewish Ghetto monuments, followed by a drive past the imposing building of the Grand Theatre and the Tomb of the Unknown Solider.

 

  • The Royal Castle

2 royal castle

The Royal Castle is a symbol of Polish statehood, where many important historic events took place, including the passing of the first Polish Constitution in 1791. The castle dates back to the 13th century, though it owes its current shape to the early Baroque period. A tour of the castle presents its magnificent interiors: the Court Rooms, the Parliamentary Rooms and the Royal Apartments. Numerous paintings displayed there include portraits of Polish monarchs and the works of Bernardo Bellotto Canaletto.

 

  • Wilanow Palace and Park

3 wilanow

This summer residence of King Jan III Sobieski is often called “Little Versailles” Its magnificent interiors include furniture and china from the period of Sobieski’s victory over the Turks at the gates of Vienna in the 17th century. The grounds consist of an English park, an Italian Baroque garden and rose garden.

 

  • Lazienki Park

4 lazienki

Łazienki, one of the most beautiful parks in Europe, was founded in 1766 by Stanisław August Poniatowski, the last king of Poland. The Palace on the Water, the royal residence is the most famous building in the complex.

 

  • Praga District

The 19th and 20th century architectural legacy of the Praga district, buildings which survived WW2 but were rather neglected since then, lend the district its unique character. Hence film makers, such as Polański, seeking authentic fragments of pre-war Warsaw for the film “The Pianist” come to streets like Mała Street to shoot on location. The flowers on the balconies and the numerous Marian shrines in the courtyards give the narrow streets an added charm. You can still see the traces of adverts for shops, some of which are in Russian, dating back to the 19th century. One of the many attractions is the Różyckiego Street Bazaar, which has been around for over 100 years. There are signs of Warsaw’s multicultural past and present. Across from the Gothic spires of the St Florian Cathedral gleams the typically Russian cupola of the Mary Magdalene Orthodox Church. Meanwhile Armenian, Vietnamese, Russian, and Lithuanian are just some of the languages you will hear spoken by the traders at the Stadion market, the largest flea market in Europe, where it is famed you can buy absolutely anything. Visitors are also attracted by Praga’s industrial architecture (eg. the Koneser Vodka Factory). The specific atmosphere of the right bank of the Vistula has also encouraged several galeries, cafes and clubs to open here and more and more Varsovians are proud to say “my heart is on the right side”.

 

  • Zelazowa Wola

5 zelazowa wola

A 1-hour drive takes you to the picturesque birthplace of the Great Polish composer. This charming polish manor is surrounded by beautiful grounds with hundreds of rare plant species. The tour of the manor is accompanied by recordings of Chopin’s works. Private concerts available.

 

  • Nieborow

6 nieborow

Nieborów has landscaped gardens and a splendid 17th century Baroque palace. Nearby Arkadia Park – boasts Romantic follies such as Diana’s Temple, and Sibyl’s Cave.

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