I have to admit when I was first told that I need to travel to Warsaw (Poland) for a client meeting, I wasn’t excited at all. In fact, I was a little apprehensive as my client office was in the outskirts of the city, which meant I had to figure out some means to reach there, all by myself! Somehow, I had this image of a war-torn city in my mind and this was despite hearing all the cool stuff from my colleagues, who had been there earlier.
But, I was completely WRONG as well as pleasantly surprised. The way this whole country, Poland, has emerged out of the chaos and rebuilt themselves is commendable. By the looks of it, no one can ever imagine that it was bombed and ravaged again and again in past times. For those who aren’t aware, Poland was the center of both the World Wars as well as part of the Cold war on the Soviet side. One-fifth of the Polish population perished during World War II, half of them were 3,000,000 Polish Jews who were brutally murdered in The Holocaust. This country has suffered under both Napoleon and Nazi regimes. In-spite of all this, it has managed to recover from all its significant losses to become one of the most sought after country for businesses all over the world, with Warsaw being its cosmopolitan capital. Warsaw is sometimes also referred to as the Phoenix city for the same reason.
Few Interesting facts about Warsaw that I would like to list down for others to know –
- Warsaw Old town – It is the oldest part of the city which was completely destroyed in the World War II and was rebuilt using paintings from those times. A perfect example of restoration and hence, a UNESCO site as well. It is also a very lively place especially during weekends, with street performances by aspiring local bands and artists. Apart from this, there is an open market with plenty of shops and restaurants serving the best polish cuisine here. I, personally liked, those big cone ice creams sold here.
- Vodka Country – Poland is one of the largest producers of Vodka in the world. In fact, at a few shops in Warsaw, I could find vodka being sold at much lesser cost than a bottle of water! Best Polish vodka brands to try – Zubrowka and Soplica (Hazel Nut flavor).
- Birthplace of Marie Curie – One of the first female recipients of Nobel Prize for her research on radioactivity and discovery of radium, Marie Curie, was born in this country.
- Chopin Music – The city reveres the Polish composer and pianist Fredric Chopin for his works, who has a status of the music’s earliest superstars making him a leading symbol of the romantic era. His life is the subject of various films and biographies and so, it’s worthwhile to learn more about Chopin while visiting Warsaw. The International airport itself is named after him and there is statue of his, that can be found in the city.
- Safe – Warsaw is quite safe and hence, one can roam around without much of a worry. People are also friendly and most of them do understand English which makes it convenient for foreign tourists to explore the city and stay here.
- Well Connected – They have a very good public transportation system with trams, trains, buses which can take you anywhere across the city. Also, it is one of the best modes of transportation because there is unusually high traffic on roads at peak hours.
- No. of Jobs – This is one of the places where the no. of available jobs in the market (especially in IT) exceed the number of people. Demand exceeds supply, a rare scenario in today’s date! Most of the global companies are expanding their operations in Poland these days and hence, this demand is expected to increase in coming future as well.
- Affordable – Warsaw is comparatively much cheaper when compared to other cities in Europe. You can find the best hotels or studio apartments for a comfortable stay, at very reasonable prices. My suggestions based on personal experience – St. Andrew’s residence or Platinum residence for long duration stays, as they offer service apartments and Novotel or Radisson Blu, if it is a short trip! https://www.radissonblu.com/en
Hopefully, this blog will urge someone out there to visit this beautiful city!