Over the past century, Poland has been through an unimaginable amount of turmoil. Through it all, though, the people of Poland have managed to maintain an unparalleled level of dignity and optimism. To visit Poland, you might assume you’d come upon a country that’s been ravaged by two tremendous world wars and years of communist rule—which it has—but you’d never know it. The people are beyond warm and welcoming; the landscape is breathtaking, and the architecture is simply unreal.
Those reasons are just three among the dozens of reasons to love Poland.
Poland’s Gorgeous Landscapes
From Tatra National Park in the south of Poland to the majestic beauty of Gdańsk in the north, there are so many hidden—and not-so-hidden—treasures sprinkled across the land. If you crave asylum in the untouched mountains, Poland is home to vast stretches of completely pristine mountain ranges. If lakes are more your fancy, Poland offers an entire lake district, the Masurian Lake District, bountiful with crystalline waters and some of the most captivating rivers and tributaries in the world.
Rich Polish Art and Architecture
In the midst of World War II, Poland made it a priority to preserve its rich artistic contribution to the world by exporting the brunt of its precious paintings to more safe havens for the duration of the war.
To get a true sense of Poland, you have to visit some of their proudest exhibitions of brilliant art and architecture. If you get the chance, don’t miss out on the Wieliczka Salt Mine, which is home to incredible statues, stables, and even an entire cathedral carved out of salt.
The Unforgettable People of Poland
The people, however, are the real treasure of Poland. Despite their storied history, or perhaps because of it, Polish people are some of the happiest, most endearing people in the world. They have a bright sense of humor that’s playfully exuberant and contagious. When you’re around Polish people, you can’t help but smile.
If for no other reason, you should absolutely visit Poland for the unforgettable people. You may just end up making a lifelong friend on your adventure through the streets of Krakow.