A Warsaw budget Weekend in Poland?
My Birthday resolution was to quit smoking (which I failed at, but stay with me). As a reward for giving up the bad habit I pondered, but not for long, what could I spend that money on. I worked out it equated to around £100 every two weeks. Thus become my £100 trip away challenge.
So, what did it get me in Warsaw…
Flights / Transport £20 + £6 +£3
My cheapest flights of the year came in at £19.99 flying return from London to Warsaw Modlin Airport. Being Ryanair, of course, its not the main airport but the bus/train journey was pretty quick into the centre. (At the time of writing you can get weekend flights for £30 return with Ryanair from London this January)
Return train journey to the airport was £6
Travel pass for two days on the trams/busses can be picked up for £3
This isn’t the most happening backpacker’s destination (yet?) but there are a good few hostels to pick from. I went for ChillOut hostel in a good sized dorm but the hotels are so cheap here If I was sharing a room with a travel buddy you could upgrade to a good 3/4* hotel easily.
I took my parents along on this one for a Christmas present, though I spent an extra £15pp on them so they could have a 4* Hotel. Sharing dorms with your folks is a budget travel step too far!
Food & Drink – £40
Warsaw, or in fact Poland, in general, is not somewhere you will go hungry.The portions are big, hearty filling meals. From soups in loaves of bread, Pierogi (filled dumplings) to the national stews there are heaps of choices. More ‘refined’ dishes are also available at great prices. I in fact recently went back to Gdansk in Poland just for a weekend of food.
For a few pounds, you can pick up a huge breakfast of bread, gherkins, salads, cheeses and pates so no worries if your accommodation is coming without breakfast.
Unlike many budget trips, here I managed to eat a good meal out, have snacks and enjoy some beers and mulled wine well within budget over six meals.
Sightseeing – £3.60
Sightseeing in Warsaw is a bit of a strange affair. With the Christmas decorations still openly on display in February and the fact it’s a re-creation of an old city at times I felt I was almost in a theme park.
The snow covered paths and locals wrapped in furs all adds to the atmosphere. Some of the architecture of the buildings is stunning and wandering around the ‘old town’ with a coffee in hand was a pretty heart warming experience.
I always like to get as high as possible and see the city from above so headed to the 30th floor of the Palace of Culture and Science, where the view was great and I froze my nuts off!
The building itself is also a subject around town. A gift from the Soviet Union it dominates the city. Some love it, many hate it. Currently, it houses events space, theatres, museums and offices. It’s certainly somewhere you can’t miss whilst explore the city.
The winter frost made it pretty hard to explore the city in depth, but the charm of the old town Christmas tree more than compensated and meant mulled wine was high on the agenda.
Museums – 3.20
Warsaw has a surprising number of Museums ranging from modern art through to the National collection.I opted to visit the Warsaw Uprising museum to really try and grasp how this city had been before it rose from the ashes so to speak.
It’s a pretty harrowing experience at points, with some fairly graphic imagery used. Having visited Auschwitz the year before I was expecting to have similar emotions. The museum itself is laid out very well to help you really understand the journey of the country and has some great displays as well as a 3D movie of the city during the period.