Poland is of great interest to tourists, because this country has a large number of architectural and historical monuments, beautiful nature with lakes and ancient forests, the Baltic Sea, numerous balneological and ski resorts. That is why tens of millions of tourists come to Poland every year…
Geography of Poland
Poland is located in Eastern Europe. In the west, Poland borders with Germany, in the south – with the Czech Republic and Slovakia, in the east – with Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania, and in the north – with Russia (Kaliningrad region). In the north, Poland is washed by the Baltic Sea. The total area of this country is 312,679 sq. km
Poland is dominated by a low-lying landscape. Hills and plateaus are located in the south of the country.
In the southeastern part of Poland there are the Sudetenland Mountains, in which the highest peak is Mount Sniezka (1,602 m). The south of Poland is occupied by the Carpathian Mountains and the Tatras, which are divided into the High and Western Tatras. The highest peak in Poland is Rysy in the Tatras, reaching almost 2,500 meters in height. In the east of the country there are Pieniny and Bieszczady mountains.
The main Polish rivers are the Vistula, Odra, Vatra and Bug, flowing across the plain from south to north.
An important element of the Polish landscape are lakes, of which there are more than 9,300 in this country. Most of the lakes in Poland are located in the Masurian Lake District. The area is also home to beautiful majestic ancient forests with many rare animals and unique plants.
According to itypejob.com, Warsaw has been the capital of Poland since 1791 and now has a population of more than 1.82 million people. Historians believe that human settlements on the territory of modern Warsaw appeared at the beginning of the 10th century.
The official language in Poland is Polish, which belongs to the West Slavic languages of the Indo-European language family. Now the Polish language has 4 dialects (Greater Poland, Lesser Poland, Mazovian, and Silesian).
About 90% of the inhabitants of Poland are Catholics belonging to the Roman Catholic Church. Poles have always been considered the most zealous (i.e. devoted) Catholics. In addition, many Orthodox Christians and Protestants live in Poland.
State structure of Poland
According to computerminus.com, Poland is a parliamentary republic. According to the 1997 Constitution, executive power belongs to the head of state – the President, and legislative power – to the bicameral National Assembly, consisting of the Senate (100 people) and the Seimas (460 people).
The President is elected by direct universal suffrage every 5 years.
The main Polish political parties are the liberal-conservative Civic Platform, the conservative Law and Justice, the social-liberal Palikot Movement, the social-democratic Union of Democratic Left Forces, and the centrist Polish Peasants’ Party.
Climate and weather
The climate in Poland is mostly temperate. The average annual temperature in Poland is +8C and varies depending on the region and distance from the Baltic Sea. The average temperature in summer is +18C, and in winter in January -4C.
Sea in Poland
In the north, Poland is washed by the Baltic Sea. The length of the coastline is 788 kilometers. The largest Polish port is Gdansk. Poland consists of several islands. The largest of them are Wolin and Usnam.
Rivers and lakes
Four large rivers flow through the territory of Poland from south to north – the Vistula (1,047 km), the Odra (854 km), the Warta (808 km) and the Western Bug (772 km).
Poland also has over 9,300 lakes. Most of the Polish lakes are located in the Masurian Lake District. This lake district includes such lakes as Sniardvy, Mamry and Niegocin.
Trout, salmon, pike, zander, whitefish, tench, bleak, carp, roach, bream, crucian carp, catfish, etc. are found in Polish rivers and lakes. In the Baltic Sea, Poles catch herring, sprats, salmon, cod and flounder.
History of Poland
Greater Poland was founded in 966 BC. the first Polish king Mieszko I from the Piast dynasty. Then the tribes of southern Poland form Lesser Poland. In the middle of the 11th century, the Polish king Casimir I the Restorer managed to unite Greater and Lesser Poland.
In 1386, Poland concluded a union with Lithuania (Polish-Lithuanian union). Thus, the Polish-Lithuanian state was formed, which for several centuries became the strongest in Eastern Europe.
In the 15th century, Poland waged wars with the Teutonic Order, Muscovy and the Ottoman Empire. The famous Battle of Grunwald in 1410 ended with the defeat of the troops of the Teutonic Order.
In 1569, according to the Union of Lublin, the Commonwealth was formed – the union state of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
Throughout the 17th century, the Commonwealth waged wars with its neighbors – Turks, Ukrainians and Russians. Suffice it to recall the campaigns of the Cossacks and Poles against Moscow and the uprising of Bohdan Khmelnitsky.
In the end, Poland suffered a series of defeats, and in 1772 the first partition of the Commonwealth between Russia, Prussia and Austria took place. The second partition of Poland took place in 1792, and the third in 1795.
After that, the Polish state did not exist for more than 100 years, although the Poles made several attempts to restore it (uprisings of 1830-31 and 1861).
Only in October 1918 was the independent state of Poland restored. Marshal Jozef Pilsudski became the head of Poland, and the famous pianist Ignatius Paderewski was elected prime minister.
In 1926, as a result of a coup d’etat, Jozef Pilsudski seized power in Poland, who ruled the country until his death in 1935.
In 1934, Poland and Germany signed a non-aggression pact. However, despite this, on September 1, 1939, a war broke out between these states, which led to World War II.
After the end of World War II, the Republic of Poland was proclaimed, and in 1952, the Polish People’s Republic.
In December 1989, under the influence of economic factors (Poland took too many loans that it could not repay) and due to interference in the internal affairs of the Polish People’s Republic of some Western states, the Polish Republic was formed, and the Communist Party was outlawed after some time.
In 1999, Poland became a member of the NATO military bloc, and in 2004 it was admitted to the European Union.
The unique character of Polish culture comes from the fact that Poland is located at the crossroads of East and West. The rich culture of Poland is manifested primarily in the local architecture. Many Polish palaces, fortresses and churches are included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The most famous Polish painters are Jacek Malczewski (1854-1929), Stanisław Wyspianski (1869-1907), Josef Mehoffe (1869-1946), and Josef Chelmonski (1849-1914).
The most famous Polish writers and poets are Adam Mickiewicz, Henryk Sienkiewicz, Boleslaw Prus, Stanislaw Lem, and Andrzej Sapkowski.
As for traditions, they differ in Poland depending on the region. A lot of ancient traditions are still preserved in the mountainous regions of the country.
Some Polish traditions originate from Catholicism, while others have their origins in paganism. The most important religious holidays in Poland are Christmas and Easter.
Poles, like other nations, have their own legends and myths. The oldest and most popular of them are The Legend of Boleslaw and His Knights (it turns out that Poland had its own King Arthur), Dragon of Krakow, Polish Eagle and Janusik (Polish Robin Hood).
Polish cuisine has been influenced by several cuisines. First of all, Hungarians, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Tatars, Armenians, Italians, and French have influenced Polish cuisine.
In the north of Poland, the favorite dish is fish. In addition, traditional Polish dishes include duck, sauerkraut soup, and cheese. Traditional Polish dishes are sauerkraut and meat bigos, kotlet schabowy pork cutlet, dumplings, and cabbage rolls.
Sights of Poland
Poland has always treated its history with care. Therefore, there are a lot of different attractions here, and it is difficult to single out the best of them. In our opinion, the top ten most interesting Polish sights include:
- Lancut Castle
- Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw
- Czartoryski Museum in Krakow
- Malbork castle
- Lazienkowski park in Warsaw
- Pauline Monastery
- Slovinsky National Park
- Wilanow Palace in Warsaw
- Warsaw Uprising Museum
- Masurian lakes
Cities and resorts
The largest cities in Poland are Warsaw (more than 1.82 million people), Lodz (790 thousand people), Krakow (780 thousand people), Wroclaw (640 thousand people), Poznan (620 thousand people). ), Gdansk (630 thousand people), and Szczecin (420 thousand people).
Ski resorts in Poland, of course, are less popular than, for example, Austria, Italy and Switzerland, but they are more affordable. In addition, Polish ski resorts are distinguished by their beauty. Therefore, every year hundreds of thousands of foreign tourists come to Poland to ski in the local ski resorts.
The most popular Polish ski resorts are Swieradow-Zdrój, Zakopane, Kotelnica, Uston, Szczyrk, and Szklarska Poreba.
Poland is also famous for its healing spas with mineral water and healing mud. The most popular of them are Polchin-Zdrój, Bysko-3dryj, Kołobrzeg, Swinoujscie, Uston, Szczawno-Zdrój, and Krynica.
Along the Baltic coast of Poland there are several excellent beach resorts – Sopot, Gdansk, Gdynia, Kolobrzeg, Swinoujscie, and Krynica Morska. In August, the average water temperature of the Baltic Sea off the coast of Poland is +20C.
Mon-Fri: from 09:00 to 16:00
Sat: from 09:00 to 13:00
Most grocery stores in Poland are open from Monday to Friday from 07:00 to 19:00. On Saturday, some Polish shops are open until lunch. Supermarkets are open daily.
To visit Poland, Ukrainians need to obtain a Schengen visa.
Currency of Poland
Despite the fact that Poland is part of the European Union, this country still has its own national currency – the złoty (PLN). In circulation there are banknotes (10, 20, 50, 100, 200 zlotys) and coins (1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50 groszy, as well as 1, 2, 5 zlotys).
In Poland, there are no restrictions on the import and export of local and foreign currency, but the amount of 10 thousand euros or more must be declared.
It is forbidden to import firearms, drugs, pornography into Poland. It is forbidden to export from Poland without special permission objects of archeology and art.
Useful phone numbers and addresses
Embassy of Poland in Ukraine
Address: 01034, Kiev, st. Yaroslavov Val, 12
Phone (38 044) 230-07-00
Fax (38 044) 270-63-36
Email Email: [email protected]
Embassy of Ukraine in Poland:
Address: 00-580 Warszawa, Aleja Szucha 7, Polska
Phone: +10-48 (22) 625-01-27
Fax: +10-48 (22) 629-81-03
997 – Police
998 – Fire brigade
999 – Ambulance
112 – All emergencies
The difference with time in Kyiv is 1 hour. Those. if in Warsaw, for example, in the summer it is 9:00 am, then in Kyiv it is 10:00 am.
Tipping in Poland is 5-10% of the bill. Sometimes tips are already included in the bill.
To enter Poland, health insurance is required, but if not, then foreigners must have at least 300 zł.
Poland is not one of those countries where foreign tourists can feel completely safe. Therefore, we advise tourists in Poland to be careful about their luggage, money and documents. Don’t keep all your money in one place. In the mountains of Poland, ride only on specially equipped tracks.