The largest cultural institution in West Pomerania.
Does the capital of West Pomerania still seem like undiscovered land? Would you like to see its most interesting places in 48 hours? It surely looks like too little time but definitely enough to feel the atmosphere of the city and see what it has to offer. Let that weekend be a foretaste which will make you come back and stay in Szczecin longer.
Friday - Good Day in Szczecin!
Have you just arrived in the capital of Western Pomerania? It’s time to get to know the city and taste its specialities. The list of culinary establishments is quite extensive but there is only one king and has been for over 50 years: pasztecik. You will find it in a little bar at the Wojska Polskiego Avenue. It’s a cult dish and a symbol of the city. The recipe has remained unchanged over the years and in 2010 Szczecin’s pasztecik was entered into the prestigious List of Traditional Products and is protected by EU law.
Would you believe that the next gem is at the same street? Just 550 m away, when going towards the Harbour Gate, there is (almost) the oldest non-stop running cinema in the world. In the The Pionier cinema was entered into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2005. In the year 2022 however, it was officially dethroned by Washington’s State Theatre. You will surely find the time to enjoy a movie in the main hall or in the charming Kiniarnia. But you will not find any blockbusters here, only ambitious movies for true connoisseurs. And forget about popcorn or nachos; these are – as the staff likes to call it – non-smacking séances. Surely it is late now, so it’s time for a rest! Tomorrow morning we’re hitting the town again to give you even more surprises.
Saturday – let’s meet at Jasne Błonia (2h)
Good day!... is a day we start with a delicious coffee. If this is what you believe plus you like to surround yourself with greenery, then you must start your visit in Szczecin at Jasne Błonia. Drinking coffee from a local coffee-roasting shop, you may listen to birds singing and in early spring – see a carpet of crocuses in bloom. The aromatic drink is served by a coffee-bike, which will also satisfy your hunger with its assortment of home-baked cakes. You simply can’t miss this mobile café, and after the caffeine kick-start it’s time to walk around the Kasprowicz Park.
The park alleys will lead you down to the Helena Majdaniec Summer Theatre. It is one of the biggest amphitheatres in Poland and in the 1960s it hosted the Young Talent Festival. If you follow the guideposts, you will find yourself in the Rose Garden, located near the amphitheatre. On summer Saturdays and Sundays the Rose Garden organises various concerts, workshops for children and even dancing parties.
Architectural gems and a bit of history (2h)
After a coffee in the fresh air, it is time to get acquainted with a piece of history. Let’s walk – along the John Paul II Avenue (al. Jana Pawła II) and Flower Avenue (Aleja Kwiatowa) – to the Solidarity Square (Plac Solidarności). Are you there? Then it is time to immerse yourself in the city’s history – quite literally, because under your feet there is the Centre for Dialogue “Upheavals”. The museum tells Szczecin’s history from the end of the World War II to the fall of communism. It is one of the most important places in the post-war history of Szczecin. The facility won many prestigious architectural awards, including World Architecture Festival – World Building of the Year 2016 and European Prize for Urban Public Space contest, Barcelona 2016.
Before you leave the Centre for Dialogue “Przełomy”, you should try a sandwich with herring or with the famous paprykarz szczeciński, served in the Przełomy Kafe. These are the city’s true specialities! As you go out, you surely see another distinctive building. Across the street there is the Mieczysław Karłowicz Szczecin Philharmonic (which won the Mies van der Rohe Best Building Award in 2015). The philharmonic looks like a cross between an iceberg and Hanseatic tenement houses. If there is no closed event inside, you may enter the building and see what has left you more impressed – the outside shape or the main hall. Two concert halls – Gold (also called “Sun”) and black (called “Moon”) stay deep in memory too.y
Both places – since they are so young – are relatively new on the list of Szczecin’s landmarks. Since time immemorial, however, this list is opened by Chrobry Embankment. From the Szczecin Philharmonic it’s a short walk along Małopolska Street. The place was created as the initiative of Herman Haken. The central building in the area is the National Museum, on top of which you will find a viewing terrace.
Szczecin Boulevards and Cran-o-sauruses (3h)
Once you are at Wały Chrobrego (Haken’s Terraces), you may also want to take a walk along the nearby boulevards. You can start for instance at the Piast Boulevard (Bulwar Piastowski), where the famous Sailors’ Alley (Aleja Żeglarzy) is situated. The Alley features many elements emphasising the marine nature of the city, e.g. sculptures of sea captains Ludomir Mączka and Kazimierz Haska, but also a cat-sailor Umbriaga or navigational instruments such as astrolabe, chronometer, compass or sextant.
Additional charm to the Boulevard is added by three historic cranes, affectionately called Cranosauruses (Dźwigozaury). It’s impossible to miss them, especially at night, when they are illuminated in various colours – along with the Maritime Museum they create an amazing light composition.
Are you here in the Summer? Go for a ride on the Poland’s biggest ferris wheel. Wheel of Szczecin gives you an unforgetable view on Szczecin’s panorama. And if you like having a shot of adrenaline, ride on one of Holiday Park’s attractions. After coming back from the walk along the banks of the Oder, you can treat yourself to a little cruise in one of the Szczecin’s motorboats. You don’t need a sailing licence to see interesting places, such as Szczecin’s Venice, Lake Dąbie and many canals and islands. This trip is also a great chance to encounter wild nature!
Sunday – Central Cemetery and Old Town (4h)
A new day wakes but let’s keep it traditional and start the day surrounded by nature. You should know that Szczecin calls itself a Floating Garden. 25% of the city’s surface is water and 20% is greenery. In the city centre – apart from parks and Jasne Błonia – you will find it at… the Central Cemetery. You can easily get there by trams No. 8 or 10 or buses No. 61 or 81. It is Europe’s largest necropolis. The total surface area of the Central Cemetery is almost 170 ha. Start your walk at the Main Gate. Behind it, you will see a wide road and an arrow pointing left. Follow this way to discover two tourist routes in the cemetery: the historical route and the botanical route. Don’t worry about the fact that you are on a graveyard. This vast necropolis is in fact a unique park.
In the vicinity of the Cemetery you will find a bike station, i.e. a place where you can rent a Szczecin City Bike. Maybe it’s worth registering in the system and taking a short bike ride? Instructions on how to register for the system can be found in the bike parking zone. We hope that our extraordinary botanical garden has left you impressed. Once you have your bike, you can go back to the Old Town, which is next to the boulevards. This charming place is famous for its restaurants. This place will certainly satisfy the palates of amateurs of Asian, Brazilian, Italian and traditional Polish cuisine. And now for a little fun fact: the Old Town is not as old as the name would suggest. This part of Szczecin was obliterated during World War II. Only the Old City Hall and a few tenement houses have been rebuilt according to their original state. Other houses, which bring the Old Town into the 21st century, are much newer. It doesn’t change the fact that Podzamcze (Castle Borough) is well worth a visit and it’s full of life. Once you’re there, you may want to visit the Museum of Szczecin’s History, located in the Old City Hall.
Underground route and a trip to the past (4h)
Do you know that now you are only 15 minutes away from the Central Railway Station? Let’s go there but we’re not leaving the city yet! Under the station there is another site of our trip: the largest civil air-raid shelter in Poland. You can buy the tickets at the site. The entrance to the shelter is located at the first platform.
How did you like it? Let's not part with history. How about two options for further sightseeing to choose from? The first is the The Museum of Technology and Transport. The former depot is now a real Mecca for motoring fans, who will find here gems from past eras. Do you know what cars were driven in the Second Republic of Poland? What vehicles ruled Polish roads before the war or how public transport changed? Answers to these and many other questions can be found in the museum. Apart from interesting facts about the exhibits, you can also listen to the roar of old engines or feel like a tram driver for a moment. This is made possible by a tram simulator type 105 N. This seemingly small depot is in itself a real time machine, which is worth spending ... time for. The tour will take you about an hour and a half.
So maybe now it's time to get back to the modern day and eat something? Head to a unique meeting place: Zamenhof Square. This is where the heart of the Downtown district beats in the evening. In the rich gastronomic offer of Bogusława Boardwalk, Jagiellońska and Rayskiego streets you will surely find something for yourself.
If you are interested more in abundant interiors of a bourgeois villa than obsolete technology, see the inside of the August Lentz’s Villa. August Lentz was a chairman of Szczecin Factory of chamotte products. Today, this incredibly beautiful interior of a monumental building hosts a cultural institution that connects present and the past cultural life of Szczecin. The Lentz Villa is available for individual sightseeing and guided tours.
The third day in the capital of West Pomerania is about to an end and you still haven’t walked around the Emerald Lake, haven’t seen and open-air Arkonka aquapark, haven’t jumped from the Europe’s highest dream jump platform.
Szczecin has much more to offer, so cosider booking the next visit in our city.
The largest cultural institution in West Pomerania.
It is here that the originality of experiments is mixed with the seriousness of culinary classics, the enthusiasm of chefs is combined with their experience, and good food is matched by even better food.
Przełomy Cafe is a café in the National Museum - Dialogue Centre Upheavals. Despite the café-like character of the place, the place is famous for the best herring buns in Szczecin.
Na Kępie Parnickiej, przy Bulwarze Maurycego Beniowskiego, wyjątkowa industrialna przestrzeń gości food trucki, wydarzenia kulturalne, nocne imprezy czy targi. A to z pewnością nie koniec pomysłów na to miejsce.
Have you ever seen an iceberg in the city center?
There is a reason why Szczecin's Castle Boroughs are called "the new old town". After the Allied air raids, most of the Lower Town was razed to the ground. Its present appearance differs from the original one, although it refers to it. Today the Hay Market Square is a meeting place frequented by Szczecin residents and tourists.
The latest history of Szczecin in the award-winning underground exhibition.
Dąbie Lake is one of the biggest Polish lakes.
The Maritime Science Center is a unique facility on the map of Szczecin. Located on Szczecin's Łasztownia, the science centre is primarily a permanent exhibition, rich in interactive science and technology exhibits.