What to visit in Poznan?
Poznan is the perfect day trip to explore all Poland has to offer. Located in the west of the country and easily accessible makes Poznan a unique city-trip getaway. Delicious food and an attractive price tag should put this city on everyone’s radar. Discover Poznan together with The Walking Parrot.
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What not to miss?
Old Market Square
The third biggest market square in Poland can be found in Poznan. Constructed out of wood in 1253 on the left bank of the Warta River. In the 1600s they added on the iconic Gothic town hall, followed by typical merchant houses.
During the liberation of Poznan in 1945, the square was almost entirely destroyed. A meticulous reconstruction was undertaken in that same year, reclaiming its former splendour.
The Old Market Square is a great starting point for your journey as everything interweaves from here.
Poznan holds one of the most exquisite examples of Baroque architecture in Poland. Built by the Jesuits in 1649, The Fara Poznanska has changed design over the course of history into its final reconstruction after the Second World War.
It is the inside of the parish church that is the most breathtaking. No other Polish church has such a triumphant Roman Baroque interior. Massive marble columns and huge statues of the apostles adorn the Parish Church of Mary Magdalene and St. Stanislaus.
The most imposing structure of the Old Market Square is it elaborate Town Hall. First erected in the 14th century in the Italian Renaissance style, it is often called “the most beautiful Renaissance town hall north of the Alps”. A series of disastrous events have left little of its original beauty behind, but faithful restoration has tried to encapsulate its former glory.
The biggest draw factor of the Town Hall is its Great Entrance Hall, which is an elaborately decorated vault supported by two grand pillars. The Old Town hall also houses the Historical Museum of Poznan which exhibits a collection from the 10th century onwards.
Its most entertaining feature are the two mechanical billy goats emerging from the door above the city’s clock at noon to butt heads twelve times, while a trumpeter plays the city’s traditional bugle call from the balcony.
Poznan Royal Castle
Poznan is the proud owner of many manor houses and two castles. Now a cultural hub, Poznan’s Imperial Castle has many tales to tell.
And on the west of the Old Town you will find a newer bricked tower, built in the 20th century. But one block further you will find Poznan’s true marvel The Royal Castle of Poznan at the foot of Gora Przemysla. Home to many legends, ghosts, and a stunning view.
What else to visit?
North of Poznan’s Old Town sits Winiary Hill a picture-perfect plateau of greenery known as Citadel Park. This city park offers beautiful promenades and a plethora of monuments in every season.
The park stands on the grounds of a 300 year old fortress that became a stronghold in the Second World War. Remains of this age-old fortress can be seen darted around the exterior of the park.
Stary Browar is Poznan’s main shopping, arts and business centre. Built in the 2000s on the grounds of a historic factory, this shopping centre brings together a huge retail space with an art gallery. Notable for preserving the original architecture and style of the former brewery, it’s a great escape on a gloomy day.
A modern-style museum located near the Cathedral Island that teaches you more about the history of the island and the importance of Poznan in Poland’s history. Brama Poznania is an interactive centre of history guiding you through 10 centuries of complicated history.
Having a reputation for being a cold country, the Poznan Palm House proves the complete opposite. One of the largest palm houses in Europe, this plant house in Wilson Park showcases palm trees and cacti in a maze of huge greenhouses. Over 1,100 species of plant can be found here as well as some of the biggest goldfish you will ever see.
If you think Paris is the home of the croissant, you clearly haven’t heard of the croissant legend of Poznan. Poznan’s sweet ambassador is the St. Martin Croissant. At the museum, you get to partake in creating your own croissant in an entertaining show for all ages. The museum is located in a classic merchant’s house overlooking the Old Town.
How to travel there?
Located halfway between Berlin and Warsaw, Poznan is literally a crossroads of international travel. Which in turn makes Poznan a greatly connected hub of transport. Poland’s main highway, the A2, runs straight through Poznan and only takes 3 hours when coming from Berlin.
Poznan’s Lawica Airport offer direct flights to more than 30 cities in Europe. Located a mere 7 kilometres from the city centre, it is an easy destination from all major European cities.
An extensive rail network connects Poznan to neighbouring countries and all Polish cities. Poznan’s Main Station is neatly connected to the city, with the shopping mall right next to it. A stones-throw from the train station you can find its main bus station.
A great way to discover Poznan is with its City Card. You get to enjoy public transport, museums and attractions for a mere 50 Zloty.
When to travel there?
As Poznan is a relatively unknown travel destination, you won’t be disturbed by busy touristy seasons in summertime. Starting from June you will find a very pleasant time in Poznan. August will set you back the most with flight tickets, but since it’s such an easy destination by car you should be fine by renting or roadtripping.
With relatively mild summers compared to the rest of Poland, winter get very chilly for a long time.
A far cheaper holiday destination than Warsaw or Krakow, Poznan would only set you back about 25 euros a day while other places in Poland double that amount.
A standard night in a hotel averages 24 euros a night, while past travellers spent 8 euros on meals for a day.
Where to eat?
Bambrzy were a Polish minority of neighbouring German descendants. Zagroda Bamberska references its roots in everything it does. From its charming historic building to a menu filled with bread, ham, and soups.
Located in a beautiful Renaissance tenement house in the historic heart of Poznan you will find Ratuszova.
Not only does the design reflect polish tradition but so does the menu. The chef recommends regional delicacies such as tartare and duck.
Pyra Bar is the perfect place to celebrate Poland’s love for potatoes. This restaurant does all things dedicated to the root vegetable. From regular fries to kartacze, you are sure to find something to your liking her.
Looking for the perfect pierogi when in Poland? Look no further than Na Winklu. This small diner is located in Srodka District and serves up a wide range of delicious dumplings.
The legendary Bazar Hotel existed between 1838 and 1939, and has re-opened recently to celebrate traditional Polish recipes. Be sure to try the regions speciality: duck.
Pączki are the official donut of Poland. Filled with delicious jelly and found on every street corner. At Dobra Pączkarnia you get to pick and choose from a large selection of jellied donuts.
A cute passageway sandwiched between Piekary and Ratajczaka near the Apollo Theater.
The theatre grounds have a big garden to enjoy some more contemporary urban food served on this street.
Brovaria is Poznan’s very first brewery, located in the Old Market Square. Straight from the tap of the connected brewery you can enjoy some honey flavoured beer amongst others.
At night hundreds of thousand of students fill up Wroclawska Street. All the pubs and bars spill out onto the street, with the infamous Havana Club right on the corner.
In the second half of June the traditional Saint John’s-market is held on the Old Town’s square. This fair can be traced back to the 17th century, when Poznan was one of the most important cultural hubs in central Europe.
11 November/ St. Martin’s Day
The 11th of November is Poland’s day of Independence. Poznan celebrates this iconic day with thousands of St. Martins croissants.
Coincidentally Saint Marcin’s street celebrates its name day on the very same date, which turns the street into a colourful parade and ends in an exuberant feast.
Not Valetta, but Poznan gets to organize the Malta Festival. Previously hosted near Malta Lake, the festival has moved to the city centre. Dedicated to performative art forms with a revolving main topic.
Kupala Night is the Slavic Summer solstice taking place at the end of June. On the 24th of June children partake in mischief in the form of pranks and water fights. In Poznan, some 10,000 lanterns illuminate the sky on Kupala Night.
Poznan remains on the bottom of most travellers' radar, which makes it all the more a great getaway. If you only get to spend one day in Poland, let it be Poznan. Looking for some other quick destinations? Check out Vilnius or Akureyri. Keep an eye out for @thewalkingparrot to stay updated on any new content!