Hundreds of years ago, Wroclaw was devastated by war, but now it has changed drastically to become a tourist attraction. Wroclaw is Poland’s 4th largest city with a history of ups and downs, beautiful scenery and is ranked by many tourists on the list of the most favorite destinations in Europe. So, is Wroclaw worth visiting, what to do in Wroclaw and how to plan a perfect budget trip to Wroclaw, Poland for the first-time? Let’s check out our Wroclaw travel blog (Wroclaw blog) with the fullest Wroclaw travel guide (Wroclaw city guide, Wroclaw guide, Wroclaw Poland travel guide, Wroclaw tourist guide) from how to get there, best time to visit Wroclaw, where to stay, best places to visit, what to eat and top things to do in Wroclaw to find out the answer!
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If you are a lover of seeing and admiring famous architectural works, Wroclaw is really a perfect choice for you. It is located on several islands, so the scenery here becomes even more beautiful and lively. In particular, the green trees and the images of beautifully designed buildings, quaint colorful houses will make you feel excited. Therefore, the number of international tourists coming here is increasing year by year and it has also become one of the best tourist destinations of Poland.
The Polish city of Wroclaw is a convergence of many bright spots that attract tourists. One of the brightest points you can easily see in Wroclaw Poland is the attractive, somewhat magnificent, elegant and special architecture.
Read more: What to don in Wroclaw
Wroclaw travel blog: Overview of Wroclaw
Wroclaw is the 4th largest city, the capital of the Dolnośląskie province (Lower Silesia) in southwestern Poland, with an area of 292.8 km2 and a population of over 642,000. It is one of the host cities of Euro 2012 and also the European Capital of Culture 2016.
A small Wroclaw nestled in the middle of a magnificent Europe. Visitors coming to this place are first surprised, then amazed and immersed in a multitude of emotions. An ancient Wroclaw city full of dreams like in Disney cartoons, more than enough to capture the heart of anyone who visit once.
During the second world war, the city was almost completely destroyed when the Red Army attacked Germany from Berlin and declared it Hitler’s “fortress city”. However, it has now been wonderfully rebuilt and has become one of the most prominent cities in Poland as well as in Europe.
Immersed in the joyful and bustling atmosphere of Wroclaw now, surely not many people know that this place has a very hard time and tumultuous historical past. Since hundreds of years ago, Wroclaw had been always in war, a competing for land between Bohemia, Austria and Prussia. Until the Second World War, the city was nothing but a ruin after being surrounded by the Red Army in 1945. At this time, it was called Breslau, under the rule of Germany. Later, while losing Lwow (now known as Lviv) to Ukraine, the Poles advancing to the west and regained the land, giving it the new name Wroclaw.
Since then, the city has grown steadily. Here, visitors can easily recognize the medieval features in small squares, stunning large churches and cobblestone alleys. There are also large bronze statues with mischievous shapes that stand out and have become a symbol of Wroclaw.
This is one of the most livable cities in Europe. The architecture in the city of Wroclaw is also very unique. This place blends the heritage of all three cultures that once occupied and died out: Bohemians, Austrians and Prussians.
Wroclaw travel blog: When to come?
The climate of Wroclaw is relatively pleasant. For all year round, visitors can visit the city without any harsh weather. However, based on the experience of traveling to Poland of many people, it is best to go in the period from June to September of the year.
Annual festivals in Wroclaw Poland
If you plan to visit Wroclaw, you can choose the time of the festival to travel and relax. Because the festivals in Wroclaw city is invested extremely monumentally and elaborately. So, you should make the most of your trip when visiting City during these big events.
Brave Festival: Is one of the annual music festivals of Wroclaw. The festival was first organized in 2005 by the Song of the Goat Theatre Association. At the festival, music, theatrical performances, film screenings or exhibitions are promoted activities. In addition, attendees can also bring a variety of performances rich in traditions and cultural identities of the region, such as spiritual aspects: Summoning rituals, prayers, magic or masks.
Wroclaw Dwarf Festival: This festival is for the young dwarves of Wroclaw. The festival will feature the dwarves parade and the Great Dwarf Village. This festival will take place during 3 days from September 8 to September 10. The festival honors the dwarves and is a place for them to express themselves, unleash their creativity with all the activities that take place during the festival.
Besides, you can also learn more about some annual festivals in this city: International Street Art Festival, Crossroads Festival, All Souls Jazz Festival…
Wroclaw travel guide: How to get to Wroclaw?
The best and most convenient way to get to Wroclaw is by air. The Wroclaw’s Copernicus Airport is just 10 km away from the city center of Wroclaw. The two low-cost Arlines operating flights to Wroclaw from many European cities are Ryanair, Wizzair. You can also take a flight from the capital of Warsaw to Wroclaw by LOT Polish Airlines – the Poland’s national flag carrier.
To getting from the airport to city center you can take the Municipal bus number 106 or a night bus number 206. The single ticket for a trip costs around 3.40 PLN (0.80 EUR). Tickets can be bought at ticket vending machines or bus stops by cash or card. Also, WRO Airport Express which costs 10 zł/trip (2,50 EUR).
In addition, you also catch Uber/Taxify/MyTaxi and other taxi services such as Vozilla electric car ride-sharing service to get to the center.
Bus or train
Wroclaw Poland travel guide: Get around Wroclaw
Tourism in the city of Wroclaw is quite developed. Therefore, the city’s investment in transportation is also calculated in proportion to that development. Vehicles in the city of Wroclaw are quite diverse. You can freely choose the means of transport: Bus, tram or taxi to move around the city.
Wroclaw public transport system including tram and bus routes which connecting many different parts, tourist spots of the city. You may find all the available transportation options in Google Maps app under the Transit tab or in a JakDojadęapp.
You also may find more details on the website of MPK Wroclaw. The single ticket price costs 3,40 zł / ca. 0,85 EUR.
In addition, bike is also a not bad choice for a small city. You can ride while watching the scenes along the way.
Wroclaw blog: Where to go and what to do in Wroclaw?
Market Square (Rynek) and Old Town
After setting foot in Wroclaw, visitors can visit the Rynek (The Market Square), the large main market square with medieval houses, the conical spire, and even the large 14th-century hall in the city center. Here, visitors will easily catch sight of people drinking Zywiec beer, watching street performances, catching horse-drawn carriages to get around the old town or watching the parade.
The most special thing to mention is that the street performances here are very funny and eye-catching. You will see the image of people sitting and drinking beer relaxedly. Many people often choose to rent a horse-drawn carriage to go around and explore every corner of Wroclaw.
After finishing a delicious lunch meal, it is recommended that you take should a short break and then walk around the Stare Jatki area. This is a street lined with craft galleries and souvenir shops and so much bronze little cute statues of animals, other small figurines.
Ostrów Tumski (Cathedral Island)
The following destination in the list of places to visit in Wroclaw that is loved by many people is Cathedral Island. In fact, this is not an island because of the change in the structure of the rivers. However, the special name of Church Island is still considered a symbol of this place.
This destination is where many churches were built. For example, the church of St. John the Baptist or the Archbishop palace. This place especially impresses visitors by its very unique European-style design.
And the first place I visited was Ostrów Tumski which roughly translates to Cathedral Island. It is the oldest part of the city of Wroclaw located in southwestern Poland. Ostrów in Old Polish also refers to the island and it is located between the tributaries of the Oder River.
The first structures on Ostrów Tumski were built in the 10th century by the Piast dynasty, and were made of wood. The first spacious building here was the church of Saint Martin, built in the early eleventh century by Benedictine monks.
From 1315, Ostrów Tumski was sold to the church. Since then the island ended secular life, and became a sacred religious site. The island has quite a few interesting paradoxical laws, such as a law forbidding men to wear hats, even laws effective even on the Tumski bridge, which lies outside the boundaries of this “small ecclesiastical country”.
Address: Wystawowa 1, 51-618 Wroclaw, Poland
You should also visit the Centennial Hall. This destination is a historic building of Wroclaw city. This building was built according to the plan of German architect Max Berg from 1911 to 1913, when the city was still part of the German Empire. In 2006, the Centennial Hall was recognized by UNESCO as a world heritage site. You can feel the magnanimity in every design line of the building as well as the arrogance typical of the Germans, even though this is now part of the beautiful country of Poland.
Oder River (Wroclaw travel blog)
Traveling to Wroclaw without visiting the Oder River is a waste. Because sitting on a boat and walking along the banks of the Oder River is considered a great experience that you should not miss. It will help you to see the city of Wroclaw in an interesting and special position. Especially when you are making a trip to a city that is considered the one of the most beautiful cities in Poland, you cannot miss the opportunity to see this place by such a special vehicle.
You can choose to cruise at a small pier because this cruise will help you discover many beautiful Wroclaw tourist sites including the Cathedral island. A day usually has many cruises to serve tourists sightseeing Wroclaw. Therefore, it will be easier for you to proactively arrange your trip schedule.
University of Wroclaw
Address: plac Uniwersytecki 1, 50-137 Wrocław, Poland
Referring to Wroclaw, in addition to the beautiful scenery, attractions, people often refer to this city as a university city. Because it has a famous called University of Wroclaw. This place will be an experience well worth going and exploring. Here you must definitely visit the Aula Leopoldina zone. This is a hall dedicated to performing Baroque-style ceremonies. From the ceiling to the most delicately drawings. All have created an interesting spot for those who love classical art.
When you come to this tourist attraction, you should visit the area of the math tower. Especially, you should climb to the top to be able to see how the whole beautiful city of Wroclaw like? In addition, right next to the main gate, you will see the Parish of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, another worth a visit place. Therefore, you can take advantage of stop by to visit this place.
Address: Adama Mickiewicza 1, 51-618 Wrocław, Poland
The Japanese Garden is a small attraction located in the Szczytnicki park in Mickiewicza Street. This landmark is a remain after the World Exhibition of 1913. The birth of the beautiful garden came from the idea of a Japanese culture enthusiast – Count Fritz von Hochberg, with the help of Mr. Mankichi Arai, a Japanese gardener. In 1994, the city government of Wrocław at that time decided to renovate the Japanese Garden into a wonderful place to rest and visit, in consultation with the Japanese Embassy in Warsaw and experts from the city Nagoya.
Today, visitors can’t help but wonder when all the smallest details show the spirit of a Japanese garden following the Japanese Zen (Meditation). From the tea room, pond, stone lamp, koi fish pond, wooden bridge, to each stone step, each type of plant, all elements of the garden have their own place and importance to go together creating a peaceful but elegant whole. Another attractive thing of this scenic area is an affordable entrance fee: only 10zl/ticket.
Hala Ludowa Green Corridor
Adjacent to the tranquil Japanese garden is the large grounds of the Centennial Hall (Hala Ludowa), flanked by a fountain and a corridor covered with green vines. To avoid the harsh sun of the summer noon, visitors can walk around the green corridor while watching the extremely interesting water music performance. Many people, especially Fine Arts students, choose to stay at this ‘vine tunnel’ to practice drawing and sketching the peaceful moments here.
Address: Wróblewskiego 1-5, 51-618 Wrocław, Poland
Founded in 1865, it is the oldest zoo in Poland that has survived to this day. Wroclaw Zoo is the pride of the country when it is in the top 5 of the most visited zoos in Europe. With an area of up to 33 hectares, this place is an opportunity for visitors, especially children, to admire and interactive with more than 1,100 species of animals (not to mention invertebrates).
The main attraction of the Wrocław Zoo is that in addition to the native species, visitors can admire the wildlife of Africa such as: giraffes, camels, desert foxes, flamingos, parrots, fennec foxes, and many other endemic species.
Address: Wróblewskiego 1-5, 51-618 Wrocław, Poland
The Afrykarium Aquarium is a site within the Wrocław Zoo. Here, visitors will encounter animals both in the water and on land. The aquariums with a total capacity of up to 15 million liters are home to more than 200 species of animals, and the biodiversity of the Afrykarium is always improving! This is definitely a place worth visiting, especially for children or those with a passion for oceanography. The Afrykarium Aquarium Complex is home to many endemic species, including some endangered, such as the manatee. Aquarium opens to visitors all days of the week with a specific time frame. Ticket price is 55zl/adult and 45zl/student.
Address: 52-443 Wrocław, Poland
Hours: Open 24 hours
After visiting all the above places, you can rest or take a leisurely walk in Szczytnicky Park. This is a very large green space with a total area of about 100 hectares, located to the northeast compared to the old town of Wrocław. Szczytniscky Park was established in the 18th century, so far has gathered about 350 species of plants. In it, there are plant species native to Asia and America.
In addition to the quiet space, the park has become a favorite destination for many people because of the wooden church and a number of memorial buildings located here. There are quite a few public bus routes connecting Szczytnicky park and the city center. So you can choose this place as the starting point or ending your exploration of Wrocław’s cluster of green spaces.
If you can arrange time, you can visit the market square or go to Hala Targowa market to buy souvenirs.
Wroclaw guide: What to eat?
Traditional Polish specialties are also worth trying. You’ll be treated like a family member with a hearty meal of pork ribs, kaszanka (fresh sausage) served with traditional pierogi (dumplings) and burak (radish root).
Wroclaw cuisine is also very rich. It is possible that the reason for this “resource” stems from the diversity of culture and national identity in Poland. Some typical dishes for Polish cuisine that you should enjoy when visiting this country in general and Wrocław in particular: Golabki, Bigos, Zurek soup, etc.
: This is a simple-looking cabbage roll but has its own unique features only in Poland. This dish has a filling inside: minced pork, onion, barley and herbs. The outside of the dish is a cabbage leaf. Golabki dishes are usually eaten hot with tomato sauce, extremely tasty.
Bigos: Meat, sausage, pickled cabbage, cinnamon, coriander, honey and cloves are the ingredients to make this dish. Bigos is quite a famous and popular dish in the city of Wroclaw in Poland for both locals and tourists. This dish is often used with bread in the daily meals of the people here.
Zurek: This soup is also known as Zurek sour soup. The reason for the name is because this is a sour soup that is fermented from the ingredients: rye, flour, mushrooms, potatoes, diced sausage and boiled eggs. What is more special is that this soup will be presented in an empty loaf of bread. Finally, this bread will soak up the soup and will also become a very special delicacy.
Wroclaw tourist guide: Where to stay?
Below we recommend more best budget, mid-range and upscale hotels with good ratings and reviews you can refer to.
- Europeum Hotel (Agoda, Booking)
- Novotel Wroclaw City (Agoda, Booking)
- PURO Wroclaw Stare Miasto (Agoda, Booking)
- Ibis Wroclaw Centrum (Agoda, Booking)
- Wyndham Wroclaw Old Town (Agoda, Booking)
- Q Hotel Plus Wroclaw (Agoda, Booking)
- Hotel Mercure Wroclaw Centrum (Agoda, Booking)
- Art Hotel (Agoda, Booking)
Some best day tours, trips, activities and transfer services, tickets in, from and to Wroclaw you can refer to
- Private Wroclaw Walking Tour
- Private Ostrow Tumski and Wroclaw Old Town Walking Tour
- Private Wroclaw Jewish Tour
- Private Wroclaw Food Tour
- Private Wroclaw Beer Tasting Tour
- Ksiaz Castle Tour from Wroclaw
- Wroclaw: 2-Hour Private Guided Tour by Electric Car
- Wroclaw: River Cruise in an Eco Solar Catamaran
- Wroclaw: 2-Hour Tour of Old Town
- Wroclaw: Guided City Walk
- Wroclaw: Grand E-Scooter Tour
- Wroclaw: 3-Hour Bike Tour in English, German or Polish
- Wroclaw: Giant Mountains & Valley of Palaces Day Tour
- Wroclaw: Old Town Highlights Private Walking Tour
- Wroclaw: Tour by Historic Tram
- Wrocław City Tour with Gondola or Boat Ride
- Wroclaw Airport Transfer
- Wroclaw: 2-Hour Tour by Electric Car