Via Wrocław to Warszawa

It was one of these autumns when I decided to plan a trip to Poland and convinced my brother to join me in. We booked the Berlin-Warszawa-Express from Berlin, Germany with a stop at Wrocław. The train ride itself was an experience with different long stops within Polish no-men’s-land – because there is partially only one track and we had to let trains going westbound pass.

We arrived in Wrocław in the evening and checked-in at a cheap hotel close to Wrocław Główny. At the city center we found a nice Christmas market with Polish specialties, walked to the cathedral and the centennial hall and enjoyed the atmosphere at this place. It was the first time for us at the former hometown of one of our grandmothers.

In the morning we had to continue our journey to Warszawa and when we arrived at Warszawa Centralna we were stunned by the socialistic architecture of the Palac Kultury i Nauki. The next 48 hours we were walking kilometers and kilometers throughout this wonderful town being really exhausted in the evenings. We discovered the Stare Miasto, the Łazienki park, the national stadium colored in red, the Sejm and many nice places.

Very emotional was the confrontation with history. Numerous memorials remind on the massacre at Katyń, the Warszawa uprising and the ghetto (including that memorial where Willy Brandt fell to his knees because of the weight of the German history on his shoulders). And there where also places you wouldn’t see in Germany any more – like the railway museum which looked like a cemetery for trains.

Warszawa has in contrast to Wrocław a lot of modern architecture and high buildings, but also a lot of history. Both cities have their own unique atmosphere and I like both; and it would have been a loss not seeing them.

Wrocław / Warszawa

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