I discovered all sorts of hidden gems and unusual experiences in Warsaw.
It’s a very big city with a lot to do and see for visitors.
After seeing the main landmarks and learning about the history of Warsaw, you may want to see some off the beaten track places or find some unique things that you may not find in other cities. This guide is my selection of unique places in Warsaw.
You can take a self-guided walk to see Warsaw’s hidden gems with an offline map of all the spots in this guide.
My top 6 warsaw hidden gems
warsaw’s water trams
Take a water tram on the Vistula River to see some lovely views of the city and river banks from the water.
Crossing the river on a water tram takes only a few minutes and it’s free.
There are three water tram lines you can take several times a day during the summer months.
You can take one of these free ferries to any of the three beaches on the other side of the river.
The water trams are called Pliszka, Słonka and Wilga and you can find their current timetables and stops on the Warsaw public transport network website.
Address: The stops on the side of the Vistula Boulevards are at: Cypel Czerniakowski, Most Poniatowskiego and Podzamcze Fontanny.
the museum of life under communism
Life under communism may not sound like the most enticing subject, but this unusual museum makes it accessible and even fun to learn about.
It does that by using its large, colourful and sometimes quirky collection of everyday items from the communist era. These range from vintage record players to chocolate boxes.
They’re all displayed with texts in English and Polish that explain the historical narrative, which puts all of those everyday items in context.
It’s interesting to note that these are original items that were donated to the museum by the public.
The museum also has a model of a typical apartment, a cafe and a kindergarten room from communist times. These make the visit immersive and the small details in each room are just fascinating.
Address: Piękna street 28/34
The roof garden at the university library
The beautiful garden on the roof of Warsaw University library is well worth a visit, especially on a sunny day.
It is one of the largest roof gardens of its kind in Europe, with vegetation covering the entire roof. The design is rather playful, with some really nice pergolas.
You will also get some great views of the river and the city from up there.
It’s free to enter and open during the summer. Check their website for current opening hours.
Address: 26/28 Krakowskie Przedmieście 00-927 Warszawa
the neon museum in warsaw
This colourful museum is an archive of old neon signs from 20th century Poland.
It’s a unique experience to enter the museum and walk around retro, illuminated adverts and signs used by cinemas, bars and restaurants.
It is located in the Soho Factory, an industrial complex converted into a creative hub in the Praga district of Warsaw.
Address: Building 55, Soho Factory, Mińska 25,
The backyard at 11 listopada 22
This spot in Warsaw’s Praga district is worth visiting for the great street art on every wall inside the backyard on 11 Listopada Street.
It’s also a cool little nightlife hub with several bars and clubs, and a good place to find music gigs and festivals.
Address: 11 Listopada Street 22
the warsaw palm tree
What’s a palm tree doing in the centre of Warsaw?
This fake tree looks a bit out of place on a busy road called Jerusalem Avenue.
It’s the original artwork of Polish contemporary artist Joanna Rajkowska.
It’s called “Greetings from Jerusalem Avenue” and was created as a tribute to the Jewish community that Warsaw lost.
These days, the artwork has more interpretations. It’s a reminder of global warming and how it is already changing our familiar environment.
It’s also a symbol of change in a positive way, namely the acceptance of immigrants in Warsaw and the cultural change that they bring. So this weirdly positioned fake tree is in fact a symbol of an open and liberal Warsaw.
Address: Charles’a de Gaulle roundabout