Posted on Feb 10, 2014 in Poland, Warsaw

Warsaw

The capital and largest city of Poland, Warsaw sits on the Vistula River, 160 miles from the Baltic Sea. Nearly destroyed in World War II, the ancient city has risen from the rubble to become an economic hub for Eastern and Central Europe and a popular destination for tourists from around the world.

Throughout Warsaw you will see many examples of  50’s Soviet-era Stalinist block-style architecture used to quickly build large government office and apartment buildings to replace those destroyed in the war.  There has also been an attempt to rebuild parts of the city using old art work as a blueprint for reviving the historical architecture.

The Old Town has been reconstructed based on the paintings of Bernardo Bellotto, whose paintings of Warsaw had been moved to the Soviet Union during the war and then returned to the Polish Communist government. The Old Town Market Place is rich in restaurants, cafes and shops. Surrounding streets feature medieval architecture such as the city walls, the Barbican and St. John’s Cathedral.

In addition to being an important business center, Warsaw is a city full of culture and recreation for residents and tourists alike. Every Sunday, you can attend an open-air piano concert with music by Frederic Chopin at the Royal Lazienki Park where there is a large monument to the composer. Every five years, Warsaw hosts an international Chopin competition that attracts some of  the world’s finest pianists.

Warsaw is also home to many fascinating museums, such as the recently opened Museum of the History of Polish Jews, the Warsaw Rising Museum, and the National Museum in Warsaw, which contains a collection of  830,000 works of art.  Erica’s favorite, though, is the National Ethnographic Museum which offers a dazzling collection of objects, folk art, costumes, crafts, sculptures, paintings and other art from Poland, Europe, Africa, Australia, Oceania and Latin and South America.

 

Plan this trip!

 

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *