How to Pack for a Polish Summer

Poland is in the unique position of being in the geographical centre of Europe. So what does this mean for the weather? Well, it means you could experience totally different weather on the same day depending on whereabouts in Poland you are.

All of the different air masses collide exactly above where Poland lies; the moist air from the Atlantic and “Brother Ivan’s” dry air from Siberia meet the cold arctic air from Scandinavia and the hot African air from the south. Sometimes the rain that falls over Poland has a red or orange hue, and this is due to the strong wind that blows in sand all the way from the Sahara!

Tomasz Zubilewicz

So what the heck do you pack if you are intending to travel around Poland during your vacation?

Here’s my list of top 10 items to pack for a Polish summer.

Light Scarf

Thought you said ‘summer’? I did, but if you are like me and hate cold weather of any kind (I’m currently escaping winter in my hometown), you always want to make sure you have covered off on the possibility of being cold especially in airconditioning or on cooler evenings. A scarf is such a multi-application item to bring with you and if it isn’t cold, it doesn’t take up much room, you can use it on the plane, as a headrest, to carry goods or brighten up an otherwise plain tshirt. Make sure it is a decent width.

Hat

A good hat stops the glare, staves off the heat and makes any old outfit look amazing!  I wore a hat just about every day.  My go to style? Panama – good coverage AND stylish.

Comfy shoes

This is where I failed miserably. My sneakers were way too hot and my thongs gave me blisters because it had been too long since I’d worn them last (a problem that would have been solved if I bought a pair of Havianas). I ended up buying a pair of silver sandals from RESERVED (similar to the ones below) with a nice comfortable base. I wore them pretty much every day for 5 weeks. They were on sale too, so I was super lucky.

Water Bottle

I bought a Memobottle several trips ago and it is amazing because it is flat. A great way to stay hydrated without making my day pack overly full.

Bathers

Summertime Poland presents plenty of opportunities for a dip. Check out the local pools, go kayaking along the marvellous rivers or even take a run under the town square sprinklers with the kiddies!

Foot Pumice Stone

This I had to buy and will make sure I pack for any summer holiday now. Walking around in sandals all day, my feet become grotty really quickly. The easiest way to refresh them at the end of the day was with a pumice stone. I purchased mine from Rossmann, but it was similar to this one below, which meant it was small enough to pack but strong enough not to fall apart in my bag.

Cotton Pants

These pants, which I bought at C&A in Warsaw, are not something I usually wear at home, but I wore them a lot in Poland because they were comfy, cool and lightweight.

OK, well you can’t really see them in that shot, but they were super comfy and along the lines of these…

Portable Charger

Another one learnt almost too late – when you are spending a lot of time in a non-English speaking country, you spend a lot of time on your phone looking up directions, timetables and translations. Plus, being hot, I used my phone to take just about all my photos and videos, instead of lugging my DSLR camera around. This meant my battery ran out quickly and all the time. When I arrived in Gorzów Wielkopolski and realized almost on the death knell that I wouldn’t be able to take photos and find my way home, I had to race around an unfamiliar city trying to buy a portable charger. Take one with you! I won’t make this mistake again, and don’t skimp on the quality.

Lightweight rain jacket or Poncho

Even though it was summer in Poland, I wish I had packed a rain jacket. It sprinkled in Poznan, poured in Gorzów and rained in Warsaw. It would definitely have been welcome.

Foldable Storage Bag

I would have been absolutely lost without my Baggu. One of my besties gave it to me before I left home and I used it just about every single day in Poland. It was a great size and nice and strong so I could carry plenty of groceries without fearing the bag would break. I used it for all sorts of things. And it was so cute, I got loads of comments!

So now you’ve got your essentials sorted, you can focus on planning your amazing Polish Summer.

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