Thursday, October 07, 2010

The very best of the best of Warsaw #1!!!!!

The Old Town (Stary Miasto)
To be honest this was always going to be the popular choice, the old town is a reconstructed area of how it looked before the wanton distruction by the Nazi's in WWII. It went from this pre war:To this 1945 end of WWII:To this now:So as you can see it has been through a fair bit. In this area no buildings remained intact or standing, most were gutted with if luck two walls remaining. The town was recreated from photos and paintings which is a pretty darned impressive feat. When you enter the old town, you do get the feeling of being in Prague or some other town of a similar age, yet it is merely 60 years old! Crazy.

Now the area rings with the giggle of school girls, the buzz of business, the snapping of tourists and the clippety clop of Polish women in heels (it is pretty much everywhere in Warsaw you hear this though!) I often mistake the sound of some heels as that of a horse strolling down the narrow streets as it reverberates so much around the hard surfaces that are there.

Anyway, the Old town is nice, it is a huge difference to the rest of Warsaw and it has many great bars, pubs and restaurants. It is always easy to stroll around and you can even buy a big icecream or a zapiekanka there if you just want to keep on the move. It is almost always full of tourists, often loud talking and saying silly things, which in itself is great value. The Old Town was the first place I ever stayed in Poland so it has a soft spot in my heart. It did however, cost me a small fortune, so maybe the soft spot is in my head! Either way, I recommend going to the Old Town and just losing yourself a little. It is a great spot in Warsaw and like nothing else that is here really.

Don't forget to check out the City Museum on the main square. I think that it is perfect as a representation of what Warsaw is in a ways you hopefully experience when visiting Warsaw. It ambles along, no real true or obvious directions, no real authority, no clarity, no signs in English or any other language, no consistency, everything appears to be very ad hoc BUT it is charming, delightful, full of surprises, captivating in its honesty and frankness, allows you to forget who you are and where you are, however most importantly and definingly is that there are at least 2 grannies per room, watching you like hawks, if they have managed to stay awake.

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