The story of Warsaw’s past is told though its architecture, from restored Gothic buildings to steel-and-glass high-rise buidlings. Take the Royal Castle, a stately building that served as a royal residence for around 300 years before being completely destroyed in WW2 – or the Palace of Culture and Science, a giant structure dating back to Poland’s Soviet-influenced era. Still Poland’s tallest building today, the latter contains theatres, bars, museums and a viewing terrace on its 30th floor.
This complex story further unfolds in museums across the city. The Warsaw Rising Museum, for instance, traces the history of the Warsaw Uprising in 1944 via interactive displays, photographs and film archives.
However, Warsaw is every bit the modern European capital, with gorgeous green spaces like Lazienki Park, and a mix of high-calibre Polish and fusion restaurants, cosy bars and galleries in its beautifully restored old town. Take a guided tour of Old Praga to discover its hidden gems – and when night falls, take a wander around or head out to Mazowiecka Street to experience the best of Warsaw’s nightlife and entertainment.