For its magnificent, yet little-known townsEven though Krakow and, to a lesser extent Warsaw, are the tourist must-sees in Poland
, a number of other towns are well worth a visit, even if they've not as yet been included on the usual tourist trail. Whether it's Wrocław
, you'll quickly realise that Poland has all the charm in the world, with towns that are home to numerous museums, theatres and a vibrant nightlife.
To better understand the horrors of the Holocaust
Auschwitz is probably the most infamous reminder of the genocide carried out during the Second World War. It may feel unsettling to visit the site in between nights on the town in Krakow, but it provides an important insight into the unimaginable horrors inflicted on around a million Jews, Roma and political prisoners, who were sent to the gas chambers between 1942 and 1945.
For its range of delicious vodkas
You'll certainly learn a lot about vodka during a trip to Poland, when you're faced with rows of bottles containing varieties that are each as delicious as the next! Forget your basic Smirnoff or supermarket best - welcome to the country where you can sip vodkas laced with caramel, buffalo grass, raspberries, honey... As popular in Poland as a pint is in the UK, you'll soon understand why Polish nights are so lively!
For its nature - a stunning coastline, mountain landscapes and national parks
A few days in the Polish countryside will be enough to convince you that Poland doesn't deserve its gloomy, drizzly reputation. It's an incredibly diverse country, from the Baltic coast and its exquisite sunshine to the beach resort of Sopot or the mountainous region to the south, be it Tatras, Zakopane or the mysterious West Carpathian Mountains. And that's not forgetting the national parks to the east, including the famous Bialowieza, a primary forest on the border with Belarus and the largest wild bison reserve in Europe.
For its welcoming people
Tourist guides often refer to how local populations feel towards foreign visitors. Once you've set foot in Poland, you'll realise there's nothing to worry about. The Polish are a friendly lot, happy to show off their stunning country, invite you to sample their local dishes and, last but not least, share a bottle of their favourite tipple! So a good tip, if you decide to tour the country, is to spend time with a local family, where you'll get a real taste of the wonderful Polish hospitality