My Crazy Family In Warsaw

I’m terribly behind on posts! But I wanted to share the pictures… of our family’s trip last August! So my mom and I met up, with my dad and my crazy brother in Poland- a week after my mom’s trip to Kiev.ย My crazy dad ‘the planner’ of our family arranged for 4 days of traveling around Poland and then, Prague for another 4 days.

Warsaw was the first place we visited.

We spent 2 days there. (One day recovering from the jet lag. My poor Dad and my crazy brother arrived a day after travel minus their baggage)

My crazy brother- playing with the Westin-Warsaw's centerpieces

My crazy brother- playing with the Westin-Warsaw’s beautiful centerpieces

After being away from home for nearly a year- it was nice to see my dad and my brother (two of my favorite people in the world and some seriously great comic relief-when you need it).

We spent our first night in Poland- like any other crazy Polish American family would… in search of food!

Dad used the Westin’s WiFi to look on his iPhone for a good Polish restaurant- this is the one we found 3 blocks from our hotel.
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It quickly become our favorite restaurant in Warsaw.(We ate there three times during our stay in Warsaw.)

IMG_3092Folk Gospoda– has the atmosphere of-what you imagine a Polish village kitchen would feel like.

Very homey…

And a surprisingly cozy restaurant in a capital city- they even had a cute play area for kids and a stage where live folk music is played on certain days.

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These kids were speaking Russian… (Thanks Peace Corps. for my language training!)

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Folk Gospoda also has great portion sizes too and the best pierogis we ate while we were in Poland(I wish I had photos of them but dad and my brother ate them before I had the chance to take a photo ;))

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My family decided to visit Warsaw- just so we could see the Polish Uprising Museum. So on our second day, we headed straight there…

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It was one of the better museums I’ve visited in Europe and pretty inspiring–although a little packed.(We went on a Sunday- when the museum is free).

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Bargain hunters: On Sunday the museum is open to the public for free. (Regardless of nationality!)ย IMG_3110

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The museum is surprisingly ‘interactive’ too- including a display where you can see an actual printing press in use, listening stations, etc…
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All exhibits are in Polish and English- this was pretty selflessly inspiring.

All exhibits are in Polish and English- this was pretty selflessly inspiring.

Dad and my brother loved looking at the exhibits related to the resistances- the guns, ammo, etc.

My dad and my brother loved looking at the exhibits related to the resistances- the guns, ammo, etc.

We're Polish by chance but proud by choice :)

The best part of the museum is taking the elevator up to the observation deck- to see what remains of the Warsaw skyline from the Second World War…

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Shocking is an understatement… Warsaw really was obliterated during World War Two.

Modern day- Warsaw skyline...

Modern day- Warsaw skyline…

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Yet somehow, managed to recover…

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And be renewed.

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There’s a lot of dark history associated with Poland. But, I wish people would associate Poland more with a sense of incurable optismism.

Heading to 'Old Town'

Heading to ‘Old Town’

Poland is pretty inspiring… when you think about it.

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For a country that’s been through multiple invasions and wars…

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Seen the worst of humanity and had to recover from scratch.

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Yet, somehow managed to keep some of that identity and idealism… that tomorrow will be better than today.

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It’s really remarkable.

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Walking in Warsaw's 'Old Town' with my crazy family

Walking in Warsaw’s ‘Old Town’ with my crazy family

Not to mention beautiful to see…

]It really is!

It really is!

It really is!

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And Warsaw– just may be one of the most beautiful cities in Europe that you never hear about…

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Really!

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Poland can definitely eliminate your notions and expectations of what Eastern Europe- is.

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I was surprised at how much I felt the ‘artisan’ feel that I associate with Western Europe in Poland.

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And it’s truly a traveler’s/bargain hunter’s paradise(Poland is a non-Euro country and has pretty decent prices).

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My family also visited a castle in Old Town… getting cheap headsets and going on a ‘self-lead’ tour. Despite having lost so much, during World War Two- the Poles have tried to restore what they can…

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And they’ve done a pretty fabulous job if you ask me ๐Ÿ™‚

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And yes- Warsaw even has, sidewalk cafes just like the ones you imagine in Paris! (I actually thought they were even better than the ones we visited when our family went to France! Less pricey and less crowded too…)

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(Poland also has the cutest cups of coffee if you ask me).

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And there are always places you can find to take a ‘pierogi’ break.

My family wasn’t sure if we should visit Warsaw. Since most of Warsaw was destroyed during the second world war(we weren’t sure if there would be anything interesting or historical to see).

We wrong though, Warsaw is beautiful and interesting… although not as well preserved as Krakow. It still has a hidden beauty that few people know about. It’s definitely worth checking out.

My family wanted to visit Poland for 2 reasons 1.)it’s close to Ukraine (where I’m stationed in the Peace Corps.) and 2.) because our family is Polish.

This my grandmother ("Busia" )in Poland.

This my grandmother (“Busia” )in Poland.

So it really was a unique cultural opportunity for us… to see where our ancestors came from and to experience Poland. I’m pretty lucky- that my parents let me squeeze in some free travel from them ๐Ÿ™‚ Warsaw was nothing short of amazing! After 2 days in Warsaw we headed to Krakow! (More on that later ;))

5 thoughts on “My Crazy Family In Warsaw

  1. kimmy- paul just forwarded me this link, and i’ve been reading your posts for the past hour…. i’m so proud of you, and can’t wait to hear more of your adventures. i’d love to come visit poland one day. what an awesome opportunity….

  2. Nice to hear from you Em! Dad was saying how we should have a family reunion in Poland one day!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s truly one of the best countries to visit in Europe.

  3. Wow, fabulous photos! ๐Ÿ™‚ Warsaw is amazing! What language did you and your family use while there? English? Or do you speak Polish?

  4. I think my grandmother was the only one in our family who spoke Polish! Poland is actually extremely tourist friendly and many Poles know a fair amount of English especially in Warsaw and Krakow(all the cafes have menus in English and Polish). I used a little Russian occasionally while I was there… but my friends who studied Ukrainian and travelled there told me that they were able to understand a fair amount of Polish(apparently Ukrainian is similar to Polish) ๐Ÿ™‚

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