The treasures of Poland - must sees of the country
DAY 1 ARRIVAL - WARSAW
Arrival in Warsaw. Airport transfer to the hotel. Welcome dinner in a traditional Polish restaurant in the Old Town.
DAY 2 WARSAW
Breakfast. Guided tour of Warsaw. The capital of Poland was severely damaged during the Second World War and most of the architecture represents the post-war period. Our tour starts in the Old Town (since 1980 on UNESCO list as “an exceptional example of the comprehensive reconstruction of a city that had been deliberately and totally destroyed”). You’ll see the Royal Castle, St. John’s Cathedral, Old Market Square and Barbican. Next we move to one of the most beautiful parks in Warsaw – Lazienki Park (with Palace on The Water and Federic Chopin Monument).
After lunch break we visit Wilanow Residence built in 17th century for one of the Polish king. It consists of an impressing Baroque palace and gardens, sculptures and numerous buildings located in the park. As a nice ending of a day full of impressions we enjoy a Chopin music concert in one of the Warsaw palaces. Dinner and overnight in Warsaw.
DAY 3 MALBORK - GDANSK
Breakfast. Departure for Gdansk. On the way to the north of Poland we visit Malbork Castle (UNESCO). About 60 km from Gdansk in 13th century the Order of Teutonic Knits started to build a large fortress. The Gothic building is considered to be the world’s biggest brick castle. It consists of 3 parts: the Lower Castle, the Middle Castle and the high castle and is surrounded by a system of defensive walls with gates and towers. During the guided tour you’ll not only see the fine Gothic interiors and details of design, but also a collection of amber artifacts, works of artistic handicraft, porcelain and faience, Gothic sculptures and historic weapons. In the evening – arrival in Gdansk, dinner and overnight.
DAY 4 GDANSK - SOPOT
Breakfast. Sightseeing of Gdansk – the city of 1000-years history, attracting tourist by numerous gems of architecture. Strolling around the town you’ll see the beautiful merchant’s houses, St. Mary’s church (believed to be the largest brick church in the world),the Long street with the Gothic Main Town Hall, Artus Court and the Neptune’s fountain in the Long Market – the city’s most important square, Motlava river and the Crane.
After lunch we’ll see the part of the city retracing more recent times – when visiting the “Roads of freedom” exhibition in the Gdansk Shipyard, we’ll get to know the city as the birthplace of the Solidarity movement, which played a significant role in the fall of communism in Eastern Europe.
A relaxing ending of the day will be a visit to Sopot – the town that can boast of a longest wooden pier in Europe. Romantic views of the cost are guaranteed! Dinner in Kashubian restaurant and overnight in Gdansk.
DAY 5 TORUN - POZNAN
Breakfast. Departure from Gdansk. Guided visit of Torun (UNESCO) – one of the oldest cities in Poland, birthplace of a famous astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus. The layout of the city has remained unchanged since the Middle Ages and today we can admire its impressing medieval brick Gothic architecture. During the tour you’ll see the most important sites of Torun: the Old City Town Hall, the Copernicus House), monumental churches (including the cathedral with the largest medieval bell in Poland), the city walls with gates and towers (including the famous Leaning Tower) and the ruins of the Teutonic Castle. Don’t forget to buy a local specialty here – gingerbread!
Departure for Poznan. Short walking tour of the city. We’ll start in Ostrow Tumski island with Archcathedral Basilica of St. Peter and St. Paul, the first cathedral in Poland, a burial place of three kings and five dukes of the oldest Polish Piast dynasty. The tour continues in Poznan’s Old Town. In the Old Town Square we’ll admire the beautiful Renaissance tenement houses and Town Hall with the landmark of the city - two charming billy-goats. At the end of our walk we’ll see one of the most impressive Baroque churches in Poland - the Church of St. Stanislaus. Dinner in a local restaurant-brewery and overnight in Poznan.
DAY 6 WROCLAW
Breakfast. Departure for Wroclaw. The city, located on 12 islands on Odra river and having about 200 bridges is often called the Polish Venice. During our guided tour you’ll see all the highlights of the stunning architecture of the city: the Polish second largest (after Krakow) Market Square with a beautiful Gothic Town Hall, the University with impressing Baroque Aula Leopoldina Hall and Ostrow Tumski – the oldest part of the city with St. John’s Cathedral. Look hard, because apart from other tourist you’ll certainly meet the small inhabitants on the city center – the dwarfs! Dinner and overnight in Wroclaw. During the summer season, in the evening – we’ll see the impressive show at the fountain at the Centennial Hall (UNESCO). Three distinct light, water and sound programs are performed to classical or contemporary music.
DAY 7 SWIDNICA – AUSCHWITZ-BIRKENAU – KRAKOW
Breakfast. Departure for Swidnica, a small Silesian town with beautiful Baroque houses in the Market Square and the most important – the Church of Peace (UNESCO). The church is the largest timber-framed religious building of its kind in Europe. It was built after the Thirty Years War (17th century). We continue the tour travelling to Auschitz-Birkenau Museum (UNESCO). Located about 70 km from Krakow, this former Nazi concentration camp is one of the best known places of genocide in the world. About 1,3 million people lost their life there. Nowadays the preserved Memorial consists of two parts Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II – Birkenau. The guided tour lasts about 3,5 hours. Arrival in Krakow. Dinner and overnight.
DAY 8 KRAKOW – WIELICZKA
Breakfast. Walking tour of the Old Town (UNESCO)– discovering the treasures of the former capital of Poland. Starting with the Wawel hill with an impressive castle (which used to be the seat of the Polish kings) and the cathedral, you’ll follow the Royal Way to admire the beautiful tenement houses and churches and reach the Market Square – the largest medieval market place in Europe! Here we’ll stop for a while to listen to the bugle call played by a trumpeter from St. Mary’s Church tower, visit the church (with the famous wooden altar) and the Cloth Hall – a perfect place to buy some souvenirs from Krakow. During the tour you’ll also visit the university quarter with Collegium Maius – the oldest building of the Jagiellonian University.
After lunch – guided tour of the Wieliczka Salt Mine (UNESCO). The mine, one of the oldest in the world, is visited every year by over one million of tourists from all over the world. During the tour you’ll admire 20 salt rock chambers (with a magnificent St. King’s chapel), underground saline lakes, numerous salt sculptures and impressive timber constructions. There will be also a chance to try some specialties of an underground restaurant! Dinner with folklore show, overnight in Krakow.
Breakfast. Full day tour to Zakopane – the winter capital of Poland. The town is located at the foot of Tatra mountains – the highest mountain range in Poland. It’s famous for the traditions of the Gorale (the highlanders) – people living there, unique architecture style and of course stunning views of the mountains. After reaching Zakopane (about 2 hours drive from Krakow), we’ll use a funicular to ride up the Gubalowka Mount – you’ll never forget the breathtaking scenery that can be seen from there. Then the tour continues with highlights of Zakopane – the old cemetery, Villa Atma, the Papal Sanctuary at Krzeptowki and beautiful wooden Jaszczurowka Chapel (one of the best examples of the local Zakopane style in arts and architecture). We won’t miss Kropowki – the most famous street of the town and the best place for souvenirs hunters. On the way back to Krakow, we’ll visit Chocholow – a village looking like an open-air museum, famous for numerous 19-century wooden houses.
In the evening – short guided walk in Kazimierz – Krakow former Jewish district and dinner with Klezmer music in a restaurant.
Airport transfer and departure from Krakow.