Saturday, 19 February 2011
Charlie's on Holiday to Poland (4) - Wroclaw
Wroclaw, pronounced Vroswav (don't ask) is one hell of a hidden gem! You know what, honestly, before Wroclaw I was a bit sceptical of Polamd. Nice country, cute ladies, but, well, I really did not have much hope for the place. Then came along Wroclaw, and my view on the country changed instantly. You see, the problem with Poland is that they do not market themselves very well. Instead, they pin their hopes on Krakow (quite rightly so) but seem to give up on the rest of the place. And that is their undoing.
You see, in all of Poland, Wroclaw was probably my favourite place. Not because of the hotel (awful) not because it is particularly spectacular, but because it was unexpected. Not in my wildest dreams did I expect to find such a wonderfully placed and sized city. Easy to get to, easy to wander round and easy to enjoy. The amount of English spoken is shocking, considering we are so close to Germany. But that is what happens when you get cheap flights from Stansted or Luton everyday. Sometime sooner or later, some crazy Brit is going to go on that random European trip that they always wanted to do...and a lot of them do, judging by the amount of English signs all over the place.
There is a hell of a lot to do in Wroclaw (remember, pronounced Vroswav). Beautiful cathederals, great museums, and stunning architecture, especially in the centre. The city is easy to get round, just hop on a tram and away you go!
Situated on the Oder, this is one great town. It was a bit nippy when I was there, yes, that is snow in the picture. But hey, it was easy to get out of the cold. It is fairly compact and as long as you know where the river is, you can never get lost! Interestingly, the town has changed hands some nine times between different European nationalities. Before seceding to Poland after WWII it was the German city of Breslau. There is a lot of history here, reflected in the building styles of the city.
Getting there and away:
At the moment the main railway station is getting rebuilt. It is a pain, but there is a temporary booking hall and waiting area by the main inter-city bus stand.
There is also an airport with flights to London (yey!) and other European destinations. Easily accessed fro, the city centre by bus.
Getting around town is easy. Get a travelcard for the time you want to stay (24, 48 and 72 hour versions available), validate on the first tram, and away you go!