Review of Poland and things to do

Top 25 Most Likely Places : Krakow

Top 25 Most Likely Places : Krakow

Hello fellow wanderlusters. I write to you from 30,000 feet in the air.  Or 10,000 meters for my non-American brethren. Btw, America, please get on that metric level.  It’s frigging annoying having to change back and forth between my American friends and my international folks.  But alas, for now, I shall suffer.  Below, I shall give you my review of Poland.

You have my apologies for the lack of writing these last few months.  I have been…wanderlusting.  From Sept 5th – 10th, I was in Hong Kong, my first time back in over 3 years.  That adventure will have to be written another time (to be honest, I didn’t do much except SPER.  Sleep.  Party.  Eat.  Repeat).  But I bet you must be wondering how my time there was, so that tale will have to be told another time.

Side note: the airplane just dropped down.  My head got light headed.  I hate it when that happens.  It’s like something just sank down to the bottom of my stomach and my head is halfway between feeling drunk and horny.

boy soldier

boy soldier

Okay, sorry for the divergent. Back to my review of Poland.  For the last 5 weeks, I’ve had the pleasure of living in Poland.  Warsaw specifically.  Thanks to my employment, I was given the opportunity and privilege to enjoy this wonderful country for the 2nd time. My first time was when I visited middle April 2013 for a week, traversing across Warsaw (holy freezing hell why is it still snowing in April), Krakow (Disney modeled his Disney fairy tales after this city), and Wroclaw (Thank you Germany and Russia for not bombing this to Ragnarok and back like you did to Warsaw).  While it was only about a week, I enjoyed it quite fully, saved for the snow in Warsaw and the racist girl in Krakow who wouldn’t dance with me because she thought I was Chinese.  Who then proceeded to do a full 180 when I told her that I wasn’t and was from California.  Funny story that one.

This second time back was mainly for work, but as you know, all work and no play makes TTP a dull boy. Man.  Human.  Something.  It’s interesting seeing Warsaw again.  It was nice to see how life here is when it’s warm (even though now it has dropped down to 5 degrees daytime…when it’s only September 26! WTF man.  If it’s like this now during autumn, I wonder how it is during Snowforever.)

The People

Krakow church

Krakow church

First things first, Polish women are very…very pretty.  Like.  Damn.  Just…damn.  Okay, I should stop or else this review of Poland is just gonna be all this.  And I say this like on an average scale.  Of course, every country has its outliers from the extremely hot to the…extremely not so hot.  Like cold.  Arctic cold.  Absolute zero cold.  Okay, no, that’s too mean. Anyway, the point is, on a rolling average, Polish women are pretty good looking.  The men…not so much.  Back to the women.  I would say, along with women from Spain, Polish women are in the top 2 countries that I’ve been to so far (albeit I’m missing out on Brazil, Argentina, Sweden, Russia, the whole southeast Europe and Middle East, lands of where many people claim beauty exists.  So take what I say with however you feel like it).

The ones that I’ve met so far are pretty cool so far personality wise.  Definitely there on the shy scale.  Maybe my personality is a little bit too much for Poland. I agree. I can be brass and too upfront sometimes.  But as I always say, ain’t no one got time for small talks and dishonesty.

The Cities

In terms of cities, Poland is gorgeous.  I’ve managed to add a small town called Torun to my list of locations traveled here in Poland.  I’m hoping before I leave, I’ll get to visit Gdansk (northern Baltic city,) and Poznan.  It’s a shame Warsaw got flattened during WW2.  I would have loved to see how it would have looked without it (and the fugly soviet architecture that replaced some parts of it afterward).

Krakow (3 hours south of Warsaw) is gorgeous.  Like. Just. Plain.  Gorgeous.  Beautiful architecture everywhere, lots of things to do (The salt mine, which I recommend, and as well as one of humanity’s 20th century shame: Auschwitz and so on).  The nightlife in Krakow is pretty good. I wouldn’t go as far as say it’s as amazing as Vegas, NYC, Barcelona, and so on, but it’s sufficient for a 3-day weekend trip.  A little touristy, but I guess it comes with the territory.

Wroclaw from above

Wroclaw from above

If you enjoy Krakow, and don’t want the tourists, then Wroclaw (5 hours southwest of Warsaw) is your city.  Just as beautiful as Krakow (but without the castle and tourists), it gives you a feel of what a small Polish city might be like.  I call it small because anything under 500k people is small to me.  I heard that recently the nightlife there is pretty amazing as well.  I’ve been to Wroclaw twice now and really enjoy it.  Hopefully I’ll get to experience the nightlife one time in the future.  There’s lots of sights and sceneries to check out, and some pretty good decent food too.

Torun, as I mentioned above, is a small college town about 2.5 hours northwest of Warsaw by train.  It’s very compact.  You can see pretty much everything in one day.  It definitely has that small town feel to it, with amazing Polish architecture abundant everywhere in old town.  The city is known for its gingerbread.  Which I totally recommend checking out.  Cuz the gingerbread is frigggin amazing.  I should have bought more.  I ate it all already.  Now my life is crumbling away.  Okay, overdramatic, but anyway, Torun is also Copernicus’ birthplace, so they got his statue and his home here.

The Culture

krakow square

krakow square

One thing I first found amazing, and now really like as it makes my life so much easier, is that everyone and their mom speaks English here. Even the worse one can still understand here and there, which is pretty great, because my Polish is crap, and pronouncing it makes me feeling like I’m butchering their language (which funny enough, to my ears, sounds very Portuguese).  After a month or so living here now, I’ve managed to pick up some phrases and stuff, but so far, speaking English has been fine for me (which makes this country so much better compared to other European countries who don’t speak a twat of English).  Another thing I like is that almost every place takes credit card.  This is a godsend for me because I hate carrying cash, and would always pay by credit card whenever I can (again, something other European countries can really learn from *cough* Spain *cough*.  The cabs are safe and to my knowledge don’t to rip you off, so take that if you ever need to.  The food is inexpensive (comparable to say, living in Korean), the vodka is cheap and delicious.  The ethnic food can be better though.  I ate at the apparently best Vietnamese place in Warsaw, and it was… a 5.

Second side note: Farting while on an airplane and noticing how smelly your fart smells is quite…a predicament.   You should feel bad because other people can smell your smelly farts, but then it’s a natural bodily function, just as breathing is.  I think I shant feel bad Bob because I really tried to hold it in!

In terms of overall partying, I would rank it like…a 6.5  In my first weekend out in Warsaw, I got kicked out of a club but no reason other than…actually, I don’t know why.  Long story short, I was just standing somewhere, enjoying my drink as I was walking, and then I stopped to take a look at the dance floor.  The dude standing in front of me then turn around and saw me, and next thing I knew, he started shoving me and pushing me towards the exit, telling me I got to leave, and when I asked him why, he wouldn’t tell me.  I wasn’t stumbling or incoherently drunk, so that wasn’t it.  I wasn’t bothering anybody at that moment, so that wasn’t it either.  The only reasonable explanation was because I am Asian-looking?  If someone can think of a better reason, you can say it in the comments.  Of course, at least I got into the club, so that’s something!  Unlike other countries where I’m denied entries at the door *cough* Lithuania and Spain *cough*.  I haven’t been to any places so far that I can say like crazy partying.  It’s actually kind of tone down, so maybe my expectations are too high?  I got 2 weeks left to find out.

Traveling around the country is pretty easy as the trains and buses almost go everywhere.  Pro-tip: The train is almost always late.  Don’t rely on it.  Take the bus if you can. But the train does give a good countryside view.  Too bad the countryside is pretty bare.

The Food and Summary

Wroclaw

Wroclaw

So, I think I’ve covered pretty much everything I wanted to cover. Poland is an awesome country and should be on everyone’s visit list.  It might not have the natural beauty that some other countries can claim, but it does have its charms in its small towns and cities, some great touristy destinations, ease of travel due to the acceptance of credit cards and the English language, and some pretty awesome looking women.  If you’re not into women, well, sucks for you I guess.  Ah yes! Forgot something.  Almost forgot about the local food.  It’s pretty great if you’re into that potato based dish thing. To be fair, I haven’t had a lot, but the ones that I did have have been good.  Zapikanka? (Totally butchering this right here) is a good Polish fast food (although to me, it just looks like the pizzas we have in the US). Pierogi (dumplings) is pretty good if you can find a decent restaurant that makes it.  A friend and I were arguing if pierogi is a Polish invention, or if they just copied the style from somewhere.  I claimed that it probably originated in China and came over with the silk road.  It’s great though.  Especially the traditional baked style one.  Very fulfilling.  Yes.  Polish food are pretty fulfilling.  As in, the portion size is pretty great.  It’s a wonder to their gene/exercising/whatever that people here are not generally fat because of how much the portion sizes are.  I heard that it’s because mainly everyone eats at home, and lack of fat in their food, unlike American food where we’re literally eating ourselves to death.  Luckily, since I’m from California (San Diego specifically), we beach shame people into keeping themselves fit.  And that’s fine by me.

With that, my Poland review is complete.  I will make updates in the future as necessary, but I hope I’m able to give a glimpse of what I’ve been up to these last 5 weeks, and this long ass writing has made up for the absence these last few months. Until next time wanderlusters, I bid you adieu, with love and compassion for all, and have a drink on me.

 

 
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  1. Pingback: Best European Countries for Budget Traveling | State of Wanderlust

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