5 Quirky things to do in Warsaw recommended to you by OddUrbanThings.com
Warsaw is rarely on people’s bucket list and tourists end up spending just a couple of days in it. They will go to the most popular spots, such as the Old Town, Royal Castle, Łazienki Park and Warsaw Uprising Museum. While I agree that those are must-visit places, I’d strongly suggest you take some extra time to experience the city, rather than just hop on and off to see the major attractions.
Here are my alternative suggestions to get under Warsaw’s skin, perhaps meet some locals and truly understand the vibrant nature of this city.
Eat at a Bar Mleczny
If it’s your first time in Poland, you probably don’t know anything about this unique kind of restaurant, which literally translates to Milk Bar in English.
Milk Bars are little restaurants which have nothing to do with dairy but serve simple traditional Polish cuisine at crazy low prices. There is simply no better way to taste Polish cuisine as a Polish grandmother would make it. If you are in Warsaw, make sure you visit one of these three iconic Bar Mleczny: Prasowy, Bambino or Sady.
Experience the Warsaw nightlife
The obvious option when in Warsaw could be to lazily enter the first bar you encounter in the Old Town. While that could certainly lead to a fun night, I’d suggest you also try some of these unique spots in town:
- Enjoy a beer at The “Pawilony”, a little hidden area next to Nowy Świat street with 25 tiny pubs.
- Go for a shot at “Czupito Warszawa”. A shot here is not a simple shot. They are basically miniature cocktails of all kinds. 1 for one and happy hours on Tuesdays, 2 shots for 1€.
- Super Hip bars where the party usually spills to the squares: Plan B, Cuda na Kiju or Warszawa Powiśle
- Amazing parties on the Vistula at Pomost 511 or Cud nad Wisłą.
Just hop on a taxi. You’ll be surprised how cheap they are.
Taste the Polish countryside at Hala Mirowska
Markets have always been the lifeblood of Warsaw and they still are. Busy, messy and rough, they leave no room for tourist scams or inauthentic experiences.
The food comes straight from the countryside and there is no better place in Warsaw to taste Polish delicacies like kabanos (smoked dry sausages), oscypek (smoked cheese from the mountains) or śledź (traditional herring marinated in hundreds of different ways).
Buy a Unique Warsaw-related souvenir
Avoid the classical “made in China” magnet.
Varsovians love their city so much that a thriving community of designers is constantly crafting new amazing Warsaw-related objects. Go to “Reset” for interior design objects, “Pan tu nie stał” for unique Polish inspired clothing and accessories and “Cepelia” for traditional handmade Polish folklore objects.
Explore the Praga district
At the time of writing, I am indeed in Praga. This district lies on the “rough” side of the river, an adjective that could as well describe the up-and-coming Praga District itself.
Here you will find amazing street art, 40 years old “mural-ads” from communist times, wrecks of buildings riddled by bullets and alternative museums such as the Neon Museum.
Visit at least one of these Alternative attractions
Other spots which are seldomly visited by foreign tourists are the FOTOPLASTIKON, the Tibetan Gallery, the Gasworks Museum, and the Neon Museum. They are all quirky options, which will cost you close to nothing to visit.
Author: Freddie | OddUrbanThings
Federico is an Italian blogger coming from the picturesque Florence. After his Erasmus in Den Haag, he never really settled in the same place for longer than 3 years. He lived in Madrid, London, Amsterdam and now Warsaw.
Check out OddUrbanThings where he writes about exciting things to do in Warsaw.