Poznan is one of THE discoveries of 2013 for me. It was my very first trip to Poland and this city won my heart immediately. Poznan is as cool as Berlin and as pretty as Tübingen. A city perfect to discover by foot and with surprises at every corner.
These are my favourite things to do in Poznan:
You can’t miss the Old Market, the beautiful medieval heart of the city. If you want to know how many tourists are visiting Poznan on a certain day just go to the city hall in the old town at noon. There you’ll find everyone staring at the town hall clock, as every day at noon two mechanical goats are appearing there to fight for some minutes. Rumours say the legend has something to do with a feast and a burned roast venison but the most fun here is actually to watch the other tourists.
Besides this the old town is incredibly pretty with its colourful medieval houses in which you’ll find cozy cafés, yummy restaurant and fancy bars. It must look like in a fairy tale during winter time when everything is powdered with snow.
The neighbourhood of Jeżyce is a little bit off the city centre but easy to reach by tram. It’s one of the coolest areas in Poznan with street art, Berlin-like cafés, hipster students and last but not least the best ice-cream shop in town.
Very close here you’ll find Solacki Park, perfect for a little time travelling trip into the early 20. century.
During summer Malta lake is one of the hotspots in town. And some of the top things to do in Poznan then are chilling at the water, go rowing or testing the summer toboggan run. You can also ski here (best during winter). Close to Malta lake you’ll find one of the two zoos in town.
At Warta river you’ll find another summer hotspot: KontenerART, where you’ll find art, concerts, an artificial beach and a cool bar during summer.
If you like fancy restaurants you definitely should check out Vine Bridge, they say it’s the smallest restaurant in Poland and here you can try Polish cuisine in a new way of style.
More traditional is Toga restaurant, which belongs to the best restaurants in Poznan, if not in whole Poland. Come hungry and bring a lot of time! Menu is changing every day, depending on the guests, the fresh food from the market and the season.
Although I really want to see Poznan at least once during winter (imagine how beautiful the old town must look then!), I also have to go back in June. On Midsummer night they’re celebrating Kupala. If you’ve always dreamed about Yee Peng Festival but Thailand was too far to travel, Poznan is your place to go. Every June on Midsummer night thousands and thousands of lanterns are raised into the night sky here too. And in 2013 they even broke a world record with 25.000 at once. Definitely one of the coolest things to do in Poznan.
Photo: City of Poznan
30 kilometer south of Poznan you’ll find Kornik Castle, best to reach by car. And like every good castle they also have a good ghost story. Here it is the “White Lady” who steps every night out of her picture to check if everything is in order in the garden and the castle. If you look very closely you can even see tiny holes in the floor – from her jumping in high heels out of the picture.
How to get there?
From Berlin it was super easy to get there by car, it only took us about 3 hours. But there are also many direct flights from different European cities or you can travel there by train.
We stayed at the City Soleil hotel, a cozy Boutique-Hotel close to the old town.
Have you been to Poznan? Do you have any other tips and things to doin Poznan to add?
Disclosure: I was invited on this trip by the city of Poznan
I love the lantern photo – that is gorgeous. This is not a city I would ever have thought about visiting but it looks quite quaint. Poland travel is on the rise – time to start considering it for sure! Great post!
Yvonne, I’d not heard of Poznan before – TYVM for educating me. I love all the color found throughout the town and the food – YUM!
I’m so happy to hear that more and more people from other countries come to Poznan and that they like it 🙂 Have you visited a district around Imperial Castle? It’s my fouvorite 😀 The Old Market, however, isn’t medieval, it was mainly built in the Renaissance (but small and colourful ones at the picture are from twentieth century)
I love Poland… can’t believe this was your first trip to that amazing country. I hope you put more of it on the list after liking Poznan this much. It is a gorgeous city. They do have a pretty rocking art museum with beautiful paintings from the turn of the 19th to 20th century. Absolutely worth checking out if you like art.
Thank you for making me aware of this city. Now I can add it to my list of places to visit when I finally travel to Poland. Love your shots of the ice cream eating and the restaurant table.
Looks like Poznan is the place to be! Definitely love to try out the nigh lanterns in this entry! Looks like a memorable experience. 🙂
Great post and great pics of the old town too. I’m hoping to head to Poznan myself this summer with the intention of experiencing Kupala Night. Do you by any chance know if you need tickets for the event, or if foreigners are allowed to attend?
You don’t need any tickets – anyone can attend and it’s one of the most magical experiences!
We went to the Noc Kupala night last summer- No tickets are needed- the event is free to get in- and you don’t have to be from Poznan to go!!! Event starts at 5 pm and there are loads of activities to do. It gets SUPER crowded though… Also, don’t buy the lanterns from the vendors outside of the gates- you won’t be able to bring them inside. The cost of purchasing the lanterns is the same inside the gates. They try to keep track of how many lanterns are sold so they can officially report their “record”.
This was such a fun night! The Polish know how to have a GOOOOOD time!
If you want more information- we have an article about it over on our site: http://www.thelifescape.com
I love the brightly colored buildings in the Old Town, and the Kornik Castle’s architecture is fascinating! I have never been to Ponzan, but I’ll definitely have to do these things if I ever travel there!
Just to update you: Pity, but Kupala Night – magnificent event celebrated with thousands of lampoons has been forbidden by the City Authorities as it’s polluting the city, it’s dangerous to the animals etc. So no shows have been made in 2014 & 2015.
99% chance that’s it won’t be made in 2016 as well.
Just spoke with the Organisers few weeks ago.
I noticed few mistakes:
– Kórnik and Kórnik Castle is best to reach BY TRAIN! It’s only about 10-20 minutes, depending on start station. Train usually goes every 30 minutes. By car from city centre it will take about half an hour. You can check timetable on rozklad-pkp.pl/en – english version. In city of Poznań there are 14 train stations.
– Jeżyce are one of biggest Poznań districts – east part is de facto part of city centre, so it is not true that Jeżyce are far from centre.
– There is only one zoo near Malta Lake called Nowe Zoo (New Zoo). The Old Zoo (Stare Zoo) is located at borderland between centre and Jeżyce. Saying that Old Zoo is near Malta Lake is like saying “Charlottenburg is near Heinersdorf”
– The Elephant Building is part of Nowe Zoo (New Zoo) near Malta Lake – you have to see it when you are in Poznań!
– Few kilometers from Poznań, in small town Wolsztyn every year there is event called Parada Parowozów (Parade of Steam Locomotives) – it is very good event, especially for families! Wolsztyn’s steam depo is only working steam depo in Europe that dispatch locomotives for pulling touristic trains.
And yes, I am born in Poznań.
Thanks for featuring my hometown! It’s great to mention Poznan as it’s still a hidden gem.
Wow, Poznan looks amazing! During my trips to Poland I usually stay in Warsaw, but next time I definitely need to visit Poznan too:) Poland is one of my favorite countries in Europe, and I can only talk about Warsaw, but it is truly amazing. The city is modern and so diverse, and there are plenty of fascinating, charming spots t go to. One of my favorite is a bar called Bubbles. It is very unique, as they specialize in champagnes. It is very casual and cozy, and their food is also excellent. I hope that I will find a place that I will love as much in Poznan too:)