My Favourite Museums in Warsaw

Warsaw Rising Museum

I would have no hesitation to call this Warsaw’s Number 1 Museum. Hands down.

Located in the suburb of Wola, it tells you the story of the Warsaw Uprising which took place in 1944. Full of interesting artefacts and information (there’s a plane hanging from the ceiling in one place), I could have spent the best part of a day here. Heartstopping is the 3D movie titled City of Ruins which is a flyover of Warsaw after the uprising. The devastation is insane.

Audio guides are available and although I didn’t get one due to time limitations, I would recommended one.

Admission is free on Sundays.

Vodka Museum

Now this is newly opened museum is well worth the visit. Especially if you are a vodka fan. Housed in the old Koneser Vodka Factory, which has been beautifully restored to bring you the incredible story of Polish vodka.

First a short video is screened in the cinema, outlining the history of Polish Vodka, and in particular the Wyborowa brand. Then you will learn the even longer history of vodka itself, how it is distilled, how many types and brands there are and even partake in some little quizzes – including putting on some ‘beer goggles’.

The tour concludes with three tastings of different types and brands of vodka. It was at this point that my new appreciation for vodka began and I vowed never to drink rubbish vodka again.

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POLIN

The Museum of the History of Polish Jews is considered one of Warsaw’s best museums. It tells the story of the Jewish people in Poland right through World War 2 and up til modern times.

Be prepared for an information overload, as there’s a lot covered here, but its well laid out, with some interactive activities on offer. I would recommend taking advantage of the museum’s cafe for a break.

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Ethnographic Museum

During my first 15 minutes in this museum, I thought I had made a mistake. It seemed like a fairly docile exhibition with some items that didn’t even belong in Poland. But when I ended up in the second part of the exhibition, my mind was changed.

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An array of bright, bold regional costumes lined the outer edge of the floor. And there were all sorts of festival props, Easter and Christmas decorations and general household nicknacks, some of which I’d seen in my Babcia’s home and never known the purpose of.

I was glad I’d ventured further inside and actually got a great deal out of my visit to this museum.

Fotoplastikon

It was a little hard to find, but once inside and after paying not a cent to do so (if you go on Thursdays it is free!) I was glad I had made my way to Fotoplastikon. A pre-cursor to today’s modern cinemas, the fotoplastikon was invented in Germany in the second half of the 19th century. At one time, there were around 250 of these machines in Europe, but advances in film and movie technology moved them to obsoletion.

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This one was received in Warsaw in 1905 and there are now over 2,500 slides available to view in it. Each slide series runs for 20 minutes. While I was there, the photos were taken from Warsaw’s World War 2 period and they provided an interesting glimpse into Warsaw’s war-time past.

Where else in the world would you be able to view one of these?

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