Poland Explorer Travel and Tourist Guide – Welcome to Poland

Polish flagWelcome to Poland Explorer Travel and Tourist Guide, a website about the central European country of Poland. Are you planning to visit Poland? A great holiday is more than just lying on a beach or shopping until you drop, to get the most from your travel adventure you need to know what makes the place tick. Poland is a place waiting for you to discover about its people and the culture of this fascinating nation, known as Polska or Polonia. Witamy na Poland Explorer, w odniesieniu do Polski i kraju Polska w sercu Europy.

The full title of the country is the Republic of Poland or in Polish, Rzeczpospolita Polska. Over time Poland Explorer will be populated with information about travel, tourism, geography, history, culture, aviation, the economy and many other fascinating details about the cities, towns and villages across Poland.

Poland is an ancient nation that was created in the middle of the 10th century. Foreign agreements between 1772 and 1795 by Russia, Prussia, and Austria partitioned Poland amongst themselves. Although Poland regained its independence in 1918 it found itself overrun by Germany and the Soviet Union in World War II and became a Soviet satellite state following the war, but its government was comparatively tolerant and progressive.

Problems with the labour force in 1980 led to the formation of the independent trade union “Solidarity” that eventually turned into a major political force and by 1990 had held parliamentary and presidential elections. Reforms carried out in the early 1990s enabled the country to transform its economy into one of the most robust in Central Europe. This process continues to-day. Poland joined NATO in 1999 and the European Union in 2004. With its transformation to a democratic, market-oriented country, Poland is actively involved in many Euro-Atlantic organizations.

Polish history goes back over a 1000 years with many battles fought over territory during this period. Many of the towns and cities date back to the beginning of the nation. The current population is about 38.1 million. Four out of the ten transport trans-european network corridors run through the nation.

Located between Germany to the west and the Baltic Sea and Russia to the north with Belarus and Ukraine in the east, the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south. It covers about the same physical area as the United Kingdom and Ireland, somewhere around 312,677 km, (120,727 sqm) is about 680km at its widest point and about 650km from north to south. It is about 1000 miles from the UK.

Many of the towns and cities in the Republic were destroyed during World War II, Krakow being the exception. The polish are putting a lot of energy into rebuilding their towns and cities. When I went there in October 2008, June 2009 and again in March 2010, it was very evident that construction work throughout the nation is a top priority. Clearly, the country of Polska and the polish people wish to become a great nation in Europe once again.

This European country of Poland has always been a bridge between the East and West and is cosmopolitan in its make up, due to its ever-changing borders. It’s people come from Lithuanians, Ukrainians, Belarusian’s and Germans and they love to travel around the world. The Polish can be found in almost every country but are proud of their heritage and traditions. In the past Jews also have played their part in its history.

Its architectural heritage includes Teutonic castles, Italian Renaissance palaces, French Baroque mansions and Eastern Orthodox churches.

Jeśli jesteś Polakiem lub masz wspomnienia z Polski, zapraszamy do przysłania artykułu na naszą stronę. Bardzo chciałbym otrzymywać artykuły na temat polskiej gospodarki, kultury, geografii, historii i walorów turystycznych Polski. I nie zapomnij dołączyć zdjęcia swojej miejscowości, miasta czy regionu.

I hope you enjoy this site on exploring the country of Poland, please do contact us with your articles and photographs to enable us to make it even more interesting for all our viewers.

David Smith

Poland Explorer

About Poland Explorer

Poland Explorer will develop into a large site and is a exploration and educational project that will expand over time. The aim is to provide a clear, easy to use site with useful information on many subjects about Poland, Polska, travel, tourism, a travel guide, hotels, restaurants, nightlife and things to do. There will be regional and town guides on travel within Poland, tourism, history and geography, economy and culture. The first stage in its development will be articles on the cities, towns and villages of Poland. For an example on how a place will appear on Poland Explorer click on this link.

If you are Polish or you have an association with the country I would be delighted to receive your own articles about Polska. Especially articles about where you live or about the local economy, travel, culture, geography, history or tourism, and don’t forget to include photographs of your village, town, or city.

Created in July 2009 originally under the name of WebPoland, Poland Explorer is administered from the United Kingdom and sometimes in Poland. You are welcome to advertise your products and services 365 days a year as the Poland Explorer website provides Polish organisations and businesses with a simple but quality and effective media platform. With clear and easily accessed advertising by the viewer, the service is designed to be both cost effective and informative.

Poland Explorer uses Vidahost which we are pleased to recommend to those that are looking for a reliable website hosting provider.

How to use Poland Explorer

As Explained elsewhere Poland Explorer is primarily a city, town and village guide of places within Polska.

There are a number of ways you can locate and find the place you are interested in but if you are just browsing, you may wish to find the region (province) that interests you and then click on the place you want to find out about.

All the places shown on this site have their own individual page so, lets say you wish to discover information about the regional city of Krakow in the province of Malopolskie, you can type the url directly as http://www.polandexplorer.com/krakow travel and tourist guide and it will transfer you to that place. You will of course need to type in the spelling of the place as it is shown on this web site.

We have now updated the standard search option with a better one which can be accessed on the “Contact” Page.

If you look at the bottom right corner of the footer, you will see a “Sitemap” link. On the sitemap all the pages on the site are listed in alpha order. Clicking on the link for the page you are interested in will transfer you to that page.

We believe that a website should be well designed and easy to use with clear and useful information, so that is our aim. Please let us know if you think we can improve Poland Explorer.

About the Administrator

Poland Explorer is run and administered by David Smith, an Englishman currently living in Hampshire in the United Kingdom, who has a keen interest in the country of Poland and visits Polska at least two or three time a year to explore and obtain information.

Having previously been involved in the financial world for many years I have now turned my attention to tourism with a special interest in outdoor activities.

So Why Poland?

It is strange how our course in life can be changed by someone else but that is what has happened to me and so I have now embarked upon researching and learning about Poland Polska and the Polish and have created Poland Explorer.

As for my Polish friends, I wish them and their families all the best for the future and will always remember you all and be grateful for giving me an interest in your country. Take care of each other and may God bless you and your families where ever you go.

Provinces of Poland

Poland or should I say Polska, has 16 provinces or regions (wojewodztwa, singular – wojewodztwo); Dolnoslaskie (Lower Silesia), Kujawsko-Pomorskie (Kuyavia-Pomerania), Lodzkie, Lubelskie (Lublin), Lubuskie (Lubusz), Malopolskie (Lesser Poland), Mazowieckie (Masovia), Opolskie, Podkarpackie (Subcarpathia), Podlaskie, Pomorskie (Pomerania), Slaskie (Silesia), Swietokrzyskie, Warminsko-Mazurskie (Warmia-Masuria), Wielkopolskie (Greater Poland), Zachodniopomorskie (West Pomerania).

The public administration system in Poland works on the decentralization principle, which ensures that the decision making and executing processes take place at the lowest possible level and closest to the citizen.

The Polish public administration system has many common qualities with systems of other European countries but also has typical elements exclusive to the Polish nation, due to historical, social and economic reasons.

There are 16 Voivodships (provinces) in Poland, 315 rural districts (Powiats), 65 municipal districts and 2,478 communes. The provinces of Poland today are mostly named after the historical and geographical regions of the country, while those in existence prior to 1998 generally took their names from the cities on which they were centred.

A Powiat (pronounced povyat) is the second level of Polish administrative division, between Voivodships and Communes. As such it is roughly equivalent to counties or districts in the United Kingdom. There is no official equivalent of the name in English.

Some of the towns in a Voivodship can be centres of more than one powiat. The reason is that in several cases the town itself and its surroundings form separate entities of administrative division. This is usually the case for large Polish cities, but can also apply to several smaller towns.

Tourist Information in Poland

Poland Explorer – This web site will eventually have tourist information on most of the places in Polska. Being a web site you will be able to access the information on most digital platforms, including your laptop, personal computer or a mobile phone.

Tourist organisations are welcome to contact us for details on how to display their information on Poland Explorer.

PTTK – Polish Tourist and Sightseeing Society is a non-profit organisation that you will find in many places in Poland.

It is one of the oldest tourist societies in Europe and was was created by the merger of two societies: Polish Tatry Society (1873) and Polish Country Lovers Society (1906).

Official Tourist Information Centres in Poland are divided into 1*, 2*, 3* and 4* Certified and Non-Certified.

All Certified Tourist Centres provide information in one or more foreign languages and have an expanded range of services as compared to the Non-Certified.

Polska is Poland’s official website.

Transport to and in Poland

CoachGetting around Polska is easy as it has very good transport links both internationally and internally with many airlines now flying to the country.

The railway network in Poland is improving (slowly) but the task is humongous and will take a great amount of effort and finances. Large cities and towns are beginning to update and modernise the stations but the tracks and signalling equipment will take sometime so many people in Poland still travel by bus as it is very often faster and cheaper.

The road network has seen the most development over the past few years with new roads being constructed and old routes being upgraded. A number of new motorways are under construction across the country.

By far the most common mode of transport (after the car) is to travel by bus. You will find small minibuses everywhere in Poland as well as the municipal services. However, new larger bus operators are now entering the market place, some with brand new coaches offering a high class of service. There are also a number of international services that will take you to and from Polska to many European destinations.

Here are some useful websites to help you find your way to Poland.

Transport

Airlines - British Airways

British Airways is well known for it’s service right around the world flying to many destinations in Poland. A midweek price to the capital, Warsaw is about £230 outside of the peek tourist seasons. It possible would be cheaper if you book in advance.

Airlines - Easy Jet

Easy Jet is a low cost airline. It does not fly to Warsaw but a midweek price to Krakow is about £170 outside of the peek tourist seasons. It possible would be cheaper if you book in advance.

Airlines - LOT Polish Airlines

Polskie Linie Lotnicze LOT S.A. trading as LOT Polish Airlines, is the official flag carrier of Poland. It is based in Warsaw, the capital and was established in 1929, making it one of the world’s oldest airlines still in operation.

According to the airlines website it has a fleet of 39 aircraft, LOT operates a complex network to about 50 destinations in Europe, the Middle East, North America, and Asia. Most of the destinations are served from its hub, Warsaw Chopin Airport.

A midweek price to the capital, Warsaw is about £215 outside of the peek tourist seasons. It possible would be cheaper if you book in advance

Airlines - RyanAir

RyanAir is an Irish low cost airline flying from many locations in the UK and Ireland. A midweek price to the capital, Warsaw (Modlin airport)  is about £136 outside of the peek tourist seasons. It possible would be cheaper if you book in advance.

Airlines - Wizz Air

WizzAir is an east European low cost airline based in Hungary flying from Luton, East Midlands Liverpool and Glasgow. A midweek price to the capital, Warsaw is about £125 outside of the peek tourist seasons. It possible would be cheaper if you book in advance.

Coach - Eurolines

Eurolines is an European international coach company. A midweek price from London to the capital, Warsaw is about £105 outside of the peek tourist seasons. It possible would be cheaper if you book in advance. The journey time is about 27 hours.

By Train - Various Methods

I can do no better than send you to Seat61.com for information on London to Warsaw and Poland by train. You will find very helpful details on the site.

NameTypeWebsite
e-podroznik.plBus & Train Timetableswww.e-podroznik.pl
Warsaw Chopin AirportAirportwww.lotnisko-chopina.pl
Warsaw Modlin AirportAirportwww.modlinairport.pl
Przewozy RegionalneRailwayswww.przewozyregionalne.pl

Advertising

If you would like to advertise on this site by linking to either your own website or a web page on Poland Explorer please contact us for further details.

We are a website about the country of Poland in central Europe with the aim of providing useful advertising and information to those that want it. If you wish to advertise on Poland Explorer please follow the details below.

The cost of advertising starts from only 50 PLN or £10.00 on Poland Explorer for any businesses that we are happy to include. Accommodation, eating establishments and property advertisers, have separate sections on which to advertise. See below for more details.

If you would like to advertise there are a number of ways you can do so:

1. If your business is not to do with accommodation, eating establishments and property then, you can have an entry as a full web page advertisement including a web link back to your own business or organisations website. Please see our Advertising Rates & Charges. For an example of what a full web page will look like, click here.

2. If you wish to have your own business website designed including a free link under Poland Explorer Travel and Tourist Guide please contact us so we can discuss your requirements.

3.  If your organisation would like to advertise on our Polish Organisations please send us the details. The first three advertisers for each classification who provide us with their details will be given free entries. All others will have to pay a fee as shown on our Advertising Rates & Charges page.

Advertise your Polish Organisation on our national website – contact us with the following details:

Name of Organisation

Address of your Organisation

Telephone Number – Fixed line and Mobile

Website address

Email address

Description of your business or organisation for “About Us”

Description of your products and services for “Our Services”

If you would like to know more or you wish to set up an advertisement please call David on +44 07986 897581 or use the “Contact”, page to get in touch. For full Terms and Conditions please click here.

Over time you will find the full range of places to stay from the most luxurious five star hotels with up to date and modern amenities to pensions (a type of guest house or boarding house) and rooms or apartments at very reasonable prices. Some of the larger towns and cities will also have hostels.

If you prefer to stay in a more rural location there are a number of “Agro” style of accommodation places on farms and in the countryside plus there may be camp sites nearby.

If you see something you like or wish to know more about please contact the accommodation directly as we do not take commission and we take the attitude that their own website will have more up to date details on what they offer than if we were to include it here.

If you wish to advertise your accommodation on Poland Explorer please contact us.

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Poland Explorer Travel and Tourist Guide – Poland’s Travel and Tourist Guide – Polska Tourism