Warsaw has a few big and busy squares. One of the most important ones is definitely the centrally located Rondo Dmowskiego where the busy Al. Jerozolimskie and Marszalkowska meet.
Most trams and buses cross this square. Apart from that, the most important Metro station "Centrum" can be found here. Another busy and lively square is Pl. Zawiszy where 5 main streets meet and a small market is located.
Royal Route is possible the most popular walking part of Warsaw. It starts from Royal Castle, goes to Krakowskie Przedmescie street, later connects Nowi Swiat street and further to Lazenki and Wilanow palace and park. It is a route that connected the main administrative body of Poland - Royal Castle with leisure type palaces as Lazenki or Wilanow.
Walking this route you could see such nice architectural spots as St. Ann church, presidential palace, university buildings, different embassy buildings, later Lazenki and Wilanow palaces and parks.
If you visit Warsaw, definitely at least half of route (till Lazenki palace and park, later - bus) could be walked.
Favorite thing: If you plan to visit Warsaw in autumn, it is not as bad as you might think. Actually, it might be just the opposite. The city is colurful and it has this unique flavour of melancholy/spleen which does not bring you down. Or even if it does, it is still beautiful. Just take a look at some of the photos I took last week. Warsaw, October 2008.
Like most cities around the world, also Warsaw is full of Christmas lights, starting from December till the end of January - more or less.;)
The best places to fill the atmosphere of Christmas in Warsaw is the city centre - Aleje Jerozolimskie street with a view on Palace of the Culture and Science and than you may go to the Rolay Way (Nowy Swiat) and going up to the old town. There are two big Christmas trees there - one in front of the Royal Castle and the second on the market squere in the old town.
Favorite thing: I thoroughly enjoyed meandering through the varied and many streets of Warsaw. I'm sure the Plac Trzech Krzyzy is not usually as quiet as it was for us on a sunny late Saturday afternoon. The next street in picture 2 is a modern street, Aleja Jana Pawla ll named in honour of Pope John Paul ll. The 3rd. picture shows a leafy tree lined street near the Botanic Gardens = very pretty indeed. Next comes the little Alley ways of the Old Town and the last one = one of my favourites the immensly scenic Miodowa Street. So put on some walking shoes, forget the buses & trams and walk some of these streets = but do choose a weekend so you can enjoy them in relative peace.
Favorite thing: Warsaw is quite well marked with signs in streets for tourists. Signs are usually in two languages, in Polish and English. In places where tourists are the most gathered you should have no problem to find your destination.:)
I loved walking through Old Town Warsaw. I would love to take my friends there and just walk around for a day. The restaurants, the history, the peacefulness just draws me in. I think it's important to walk and take the subway like the locals of Warsaw. So much of the city can be soaked up by getting lost among locals, city streets, and the public transportaion systems. It's kind of miserable when you actually are lost and can't speak the language to get you back on track. But in retrospect, that misery and unconfortable feeling was so awesome and memorable. You must learn from your travels--positives and negatives.
Fondest memory: Random people were just minding their own business. People were nice and helpful and seemed positive and happy. They seemed like they enjoyed their lives--it's impressive to me. People take that quality for granted.
I was lucky to see Warsaw in "the winter of century", in January, 2006 when after heavy snow falls temperature dropped down below -20C (4F) or even -25C (-13F) at night. Lucky? YES, it happens once a human life :-).
Fondest memory: I was very surprised to see empty, white Royal Way (Krakowskie Przedmiescie and Nowy Swiat streets). This is the main and normally crowded street although with no traffic jams since it's closed for public traffic (taxis and buses only). The Old Town Market Square looked very unique as well. No worries, normally snow is removed from streets and sidewalks a few hours after snow fall; well, up to 24 hours in case of rarer continuous and heavier snow falls, but not this time. Main streets are treated with salt and very rarely remain white for longer time.
Favorite thing: We took the tram (number 7) to the end of the line - just to see what Warszaw was like in the outer areas. There was nice average people, living thier lives in the suburb. We managed to get away from all the commersal stores and found the real Poland.
Churches are numerous in Poland, as you will notice. This one was on the main street south of Old Town.
Fondest memory: I'm not sure why my wife decided to take this photo, but it does show a typically Polish decoration.
Fondest memory: Another Old Town, another bunch of street musicians...but who can resist. These guys drag their instruments out and play for the generosity of passersby but I always feel like there's more to it than that. Take a look at the expressions on their faces. They are really into the music and they seem totally oblivious to the audience. I had seen balalaikas before but never ones configured as a bass or as a guitar as the one on the left. These young men were playing in front of a restaurant just inside Old Town.
Favorite thing: These kind of street performers you see them in also every major city in the whole. In Warsaw, most of them are in the Old Town and there was this bloke who was singing to absolute rubbish, there wasn't a melody to his songs, it was hilarious! I took a clip of it but I can't download it on VT, what a pity!
One of my favorite things on sunny days or warm evenings downtown, after relaxing wandering around its streets, is to sit down and have my favorite mocca in Mercer's Gourmet Coffee at 25 Nowy Swiat Str.
In case you are tired of walking or just feel thristy on your way from Lazienki Garden to the Old Town don't hasitate to stop in the middle and have a sit in Mercer's for their wide selection of coffees, fruit shakes or their smoothies as they call it.
They are open daily from 7AM to 11PM.
This is the main artery of traffic in Warsaw. It starts at Plac Unii Lubelskiej (Lublin Union Square) and ends at Plac Bankowy (Bank Square). Ulica Marszalkowska is the pivot of Warsaw's city. Going North from Plac Bankowy you'll see Palace of Culture and Plac Defilad to the right and Sciana Wschodnia (Eastern Wall) to the left. Sciana Wschodnia constitutes a symbol of modern architecture of 1960's. It is composed of long Domy Towarowe Centrum mall and tall buildings righ behind the mall.
An important place in Marszalkowska is Plac Konstytucji (Constitution Square). It's large and ugly but it's also a great example of socrealistic architecture of our city. It's construction was finished in 1952.
On your way up Marszalkowska you'll see Plac Zbawiciela (Saviour Square) with an eclectic church of Christ the Saviour. The church was built at the beginning of 20th century.
Favorite thing: Warsaw has been growing since its reconstruction after World War II. Since the fall of communism new companies started boosting and office space was needed. That is why more and more modern office buildings are constructed in my town.