Warsaw/Krakow other lovely towns?

Old Jul 29th, 2017, 07:29 AM
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Interesting point, Dresden for me was mainly museums and in my case mainly closed, but I liked the modern city to the East.

St Malo, I like it less and less each time I visit it, it used to be nicely down at heel in the 70s but getting a bit posh now. Do I mind that it was reconstructed, no, but then I didn't go there for the architecture, but for the food.

I think I probably went to Warsaw at the wrong time (soon after the wall came down) so maybe my advice is not up to date enough. I found it very busy (but not business like) unlike the rest of Poland. I assume it has changed.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 07:30 AM
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Interesting... my understanding is that the reconstruction of Warsaw's Old Town Square is that it did NOT recreate it as though from a single age. Here's a relevant statement from the UNESCO World Heritage Site inscription: "The reconstruction project utilised any extant, undamaged structures built between the 14th and 18th centuries, together with the late-medieval network of streets, squares, and the main market square, as well as the circuit of city walls. Two guiding principles were followed: firstly, to use reliable archival documents where available, and secondly, to aim at recreating the historic city’s late 18th-century appearance." That's part of what appealed to me about Warsaw's Old Town when I saw it -- even though I knew it was a reconstruction, I thought it captured the sense of a space that had developed over centuries.

And, of course, there's more to Warsaw than JUST the Old Town....
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 07:44 AM
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To my eyes the buildings on the main square looked like they had all been made from the same materials at the same time. And the latter is certainly true.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 10:47 AM
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Just a few odds and ends:

In Re: the world would be the worse without the "reconstructed" Frauenkirche in Dresden. To my mind, it is one of the most beautiful churches in Europe.

Most of Warsaw isn't much to look at--especially the ghastly Palace of Science and Culture--but if you're interested in WWII, it's amazing. History lives in Warsaw!

By the way, thanks for starting this thread and especially thanks to cdnyuy for posting the links for other Polish towns. I had almost given up my plan to visit Poland again this year, but after reading this thread, I decided I would do it after all.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 11:39 AM
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http://culture.pl/en/article/how-war...-being-rebuilt
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 12:04 PM
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History lives in Warsaw!

I agree, and I consider the reconstruction of the Old Town part of that history. When I was there was a big outdoor photography exhibition about the reconstruction after the war, the use of Canaletto paintings, etc. I found it quite interesting.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 02:05 PM
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We went to Poland last spring and loved it. It is the most inexpensive European country I have visited; your American dollar will stretch very far.

Be aware that driving in Poland can be a bit hair-raising as most of the main roads in the western part of the country are two lanes - they pass when oncoming traffic looks very close! Often the speed limit will change from fast to slow so keep your eyes peeled for the signs so you don't get a ticket like my husband.

Our guide Adam who took us to Auschwitz/Birkenau advised us that Polish police are not your friend; they are there to punish you! Also be prepared (if you get a ticket) to pay it on the spot to the police officer - I don't know what would have happened if we didn't have cash.

In Krakow I highly recommend seeing the Lady with an Ermine at the castle (other than the guard we were the only people in the room which made me feel a little sad) and be amused by the fire-breathing dragon by the river. There is a company doing free walks that meet very centrally and we did two of them - both good. For a lovely and inexpensive meal Restaurant Starka is the place to go (arrive very early or make reservations however). The hand-flavored vodkas at the end of the meal are excellent.

Also, our one-way car rental did not have a surcharge - we picked up our car on departure from Krakow and dropped it in Poznan. We stopped for a night at Hotel Ksiaz which is right at a pretty interesting castle (their included breakfast was very good, almost a brunch really - anyone up for hot dogs at 8 am? - but unless it has improved since last year, avoid the restaurant for dinner) and you can hike to the "old" castle through the woods for some nice views (not for anyone with mobility problems).

Wow - writing this makes me want to plan another trip to go back.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 03:32 PM
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"We went to Poland last spring and loved it. It is the most inexpensive European country I have visited; your American dollar will stretch very far."

I wouldn't call it European. Feels more like an extension of Russia.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 03:38 PM
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Russia, as far as the Urals, IS in Europe.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 03:43 PM
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Maybe geographically, but Russians in general don't consider themselves European or Westerners.
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Old Jul 29th, 2017, 04:51 PM
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Looks like we are spoilt for choice! Thanks everyone for their suggestions. I think spending time in Krakow is a given. Wroclaw and Poznan also are on the list. We are getting more excited as we do more research. I appreciate everyone's input!!
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Old Jul 31st, 2017, 04:50 AM
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When renting a car in Poland or other ex Eastern European countries CONFIRM that you can take it outside of the county and / or to another specific country ... in some cases there maybe JUST a special / additional insurance / paperwork - in other cases they may say NO ... so do check with your rental company to avoid any issues.
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