Most of us (at least I hope so) know that Warsaw was decimated less than a year before WW2 ended. We watched a 3D short at the Warsaw Uprising Museum that showed the ground from above after the dust settled. A city that was once full of life and called Paris of the east. We can point to a few other cities that have recently been destroyed as well and will never be able to recreate the relics of the past. Sad on so many levels because cities are not built like they used to be. It is too expensive. That is one of the many things I do love about Paris is that old buildings remain which gives it incredible charm and historical references.
Much of the city feels like a concrete jungle rebuilt by Russia after the war. Bland buildings that all look the same. A bit like Trumps awful hotels. Zero charm. Although there is still the old town. The longer you stay the more you find those gems.
The amount of new construction happening here is a bit mind boggling. Again very similar to Berlin 15 years ago
The two museums we saw were the Polin Museum and the Warsaw Uprising Museum. Both about Poland’s history. The Polin guides you through the Polish Jews from thousands of years ago to today. This statue in front of the museum is an ode to the Ghetto uprising.
We had a few good meals. The best was a lunch at Ale Wino. Everything was fresh, creative and just delish. This roasted pumpkin with a teriyaki glaze coated with bread crumbs, cheese and pumpkin seeds was excellent. Pumpkin has always been a bigger part of the menu outside of the US and it is just starting to crop up more.
What was really done right when the city was rebuilt is the vast amount of parks that are part of the landscape. Lazienki park is their Central Park. It is gorgeous. The trees are turning and the leaves crunched under our feet. I could have spent all day here
We are off to Budapest next. Politically there is a lot of push pull here in Poland on the extreme far right but it appears they have been pushed back in this last election. Yet the importance of remembering history is everywhere and that is a very good thing. Based on my observations the next decade will be interesting to watch as Poland has been out from under the heavy hand of the Russians since 1989 so it has been 30 years. Growth and change take time. It seems like that is what the next ten years will be about.