10 Best Things To Do In Gdańsk, Poland

Gdańsk is becoming an increasingly fashionable place and a desirable destination for tourists from all over Europe. It is a lively metropolis that constantly develops its offer, thus giving new reasons to visit it. One of the places that have recently hit the map of must-see places is the Olivia Star publicly accessible observation area, where you can admire the panorama of the entire Tricity from a height of 130 metres.

1. Aim high! Let's meet 130 metres above the ground: Olivia Star

10 Best Things To Do In Gdańsk, Poland

Floor 32 of Olivia Star is an observation deck that is the highest in northern Poland and the third in the country, with a view of the entire Tri-City, the Gdańsk Bay to the Hel Peninsula. However, Olivia Star is not only a 360 panorama but also space for leisure time with perfectly arranged interiors and an interesting culinary and cultural offer. It is here, high in the clouds, where everyone has the opportunity to rest, fully relax and spend time in unusual interiors.

Olivia Star

The whole space is divided into three thematic zones representing each of the views visitors can admire from the observation decks. The first zone is inspired by the style of Polish Ocean liners, which, like MS Batory, have called at ports around the world. The next one refers to the Art Nouveau buildings with its terracotta roofs as one of the oldest districts of Gdańsk – Oliwa, in the vicinity of which is Star. The most soothing view spreads to the western part, where the greenery of the Tri-City Landscape Park extends to the horizon.

Olivia Star is a modern and unconventional space that changes its look both during the day and the seasons. However, what really makes it stand out is respect for the identity and tradition of the city – height of Olivia Star (180 metres) refers to the August events in Gdańsk of 1980, and the architecture of the top to its neighbour – the cult Olivia Hall.

Olivia Star

The facility is open year-round, seven days a week, from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM, fully adapted to the needs of the elderly and disabled / currently the only observation space in the Tri-City accessible for people with reduced mobility/ located in the vicinity of one of the oldest districts of Gdańsk – Oliwa, at the route Gdańsk – Gdynia. Tickets are available both online and at the reception of the observation deck.

2. Have fun all year round at MK Bowling

MK Bowling Entertainment Centre invites you all to come and have fun, regardless of the season.

Have fun all year round at MK Bowling

MK Bowling Entertainment Centre offers as many as 14 bowling lanes, several of which are children-friendly. The total area of the centre is almost 1,700 m2, and there is enough fun to be had to last several hours. In addition to bowling, MK Bowling also offers 4 pool tables and a wide range of reflex games. 

The Entertainment Centre has a lot to offer to all age groups, e.g. school children and seniors, as well as the disabled and students, who can expect special offers. Moreover, the Centre organises birthday parties for both children and adults, bachelor and bachelorette parties as well as company events. Also worth considering are events which by now have become a permanent part of MK Bowling’s schedule, such as: Saint Nicholas bowling tournaments, pizza parties for children, as well as events with great prizes. The rich menu is also worth noting, with pizza made with exclusively Italian ingredients being the most popular dish.

3. Gdansk by sea

Gdansk by sea

A coastal location is a great advantage for any city, and Gdansk is no exception. Miles of beautiful, sandy beaches, a well-developed sports and hotel infrastructure, cargo and passenger ships – the list goes on and on. The ability to reach Gdansk and the rest of Tricity by sea is an undeniable plus.

While there is a lot of talk about building new roads and railways, and expanding the airports, all of which is of course important, sea transport is often ignored. Last year alone, Gdansk was visited by more than 70 passenger vessels, a record number that translates into thousands of additional visitors for Gdansk and the region. Even more important are the regular ferry connections, a convenient way to visit other cities or even Gdansk. The oversea ferry market can change rapidly, and there are currently two connections available – both of them to Sweden.

A Stena line ferry leaves every day from the nearby port of Gdynia, sailing to Karlskrona in southern Sweden, the “capital” of the Blekinge region. The journey takes a little over 10 hours, and ticket prices start at a meagre 56 zlotys for a one-way ticket (discounted prices). If you would like to find out more about such offers, check the carrier’s website (https://www.stenaline.pl) from time to time – you can also buy tickets there and keep up to date with any new promotional offers.

The second option is by Polferries, with two vessels – “Wawel” and the latest addition “Nova Star”, with crossings taking place between 2 and 4 times per week, depending on the season. They sail between Gdansk and Nynashamn, a town located a mere dozen kilometres from Stockholm. Ticket prices start at 241 zlotys (one-way), and it is a good idea to check the https://polferries.pl website to see if there are any promotional offers. The journey takes around 18 hours.

4. Gdansk Historic buildings a reasons to be proud!

The capital of Pomerania would not be the same without its historic buildings. For hundreds of years, they have been impressing, drawing attention and piquing interest, as well as serving as proof of the uniqueness of Gdansk and its 1000 years of history. Below are our 5 picks for the most important historic buildings in the centre of Gdansk.

St Mary’s Basilica

St Mary’s Basilica
 The Crane
 The Crane
 The Royal Road
The Royal Road
The Gatehouse Complex and the Torture Room
The Gatehouse Complex and the Torture Room

Minor Basilica of St Bridget

Minor Basilica of St Bridget

5. Oliwa Culture City Hall

Since last year, the beautifully renovated 19th/20th century townhouse at Oliwa’s 25 Opata Jacka Rybinskiego Street has been a popular space for all things cultural – music, theatre, visual arts, film, literature and healthy eating.

Oliwa Culture City Hall

Thanks to the aforementioned townhouse’s new interior design, Oliwa and Gdansk have gained an entirely new, fantastic place for organising events and community building. The City Hall’s ground floor contains a room which serves as a venue for concerts, plays and film screenings several times
a week. The room is also an exhibition space – it houses paintings, graphics, drawings and photographs by both Polish and international artists.

A restaurant offering healthy and delicious food made from ingredients from local providers is planned to open in the adjacent room. The restaurant will also serve as a reading room, book and art shop.

The first floor is also to be redesigned in the near future – as a space for cultural education. The Oliwa Academy of Art will use the three workshops available there to offer classes and lectures on the following topics: Literature, Visual Arts, Handicraft, Fashion and Beauty, Family, Nature, Film, Theatre, New Technology and Oliwa Studies. Currently, the spacious hall houses a sculpture gallery.

It is also worth mentioning that the building is 100% disability-friendly.

6. Go on a voyage aboard Gdanski Bowke

In the beginning, there was Bowke. Then came the Gdanski Bowke restaurant, and now a ship! That’s right – the “Gdanski Bowke Cruises” hit the waters of Motlawa. All aboard!
Go on a voyage aboard Gdanski Bowke

But hold on a moment... Some of you might not know who Gdanski Bowke was. Well, he was a Gdansk native, a rather harmless delinquent and troublemaker, as well as a hard liquor aficionado. He was known for spending most of his time around the port and was more comical than dangerous, adding to the city’s atmosphere. Bowke turns up in the works of writers such as Grass, Derdowski and Zwarra.

The boat itself is an antique already, dating from 1909, and like its namesake is sure to add charm to the city and become a new, waterborne attraction. Being aboard is like being transported to the olden days. Enjoy some great Polish snacks, and maybe even try regional alcoholic beverages, Bowke’s object of affection.

The boat offers cruises in a comfortable atmosphere with professional staff. The deck affords great views, where you can marvel at Gdansk from a totally different angle. Available for sale are tickets for the regular cruises to Westerplatte, but nothing is stopping you from planning your own cruise (with prior arrangements).

For futher information call: +48 506 082 619.

7. Explore beautiful Gdansk with Hewelion!

The small lion, Hewelion (so named by internet users), has set off to discover the beauty of our city. Bronze statuettes of Hewelion about half a metre high are cropping up throughout the city, each in a pose and attire that is specific for that particular location.
Explore beautiful Gdansk with Hewelion!

So far there are eight statuettes on the Hewelion trail. The first one was unveiled in October 2015 in Gdansk Zoo, followed by others next to the Energa Gdansk Stadium, Gdansk pier, the Hewelianum Centre, Dlugi Targ Street (Gdansk Tourist Information Centre), the airport, Olowianka Island and the Great Mill.
These statuettes make up a new and interesting tourist trail in our city, and several dozen more statuettes are planned. The lion was an intentional choice, based on one of the city's best known symbols.

If you would like to explore the Hewelion tourist trail in Gdansk, check out iLeo, a free mobile app available for two operating systems (iOS and Android), which uses the Bluetooth function to gather interesting facts from each lion. How does this work? When you put your phone close to a statuette, a text message will be displayed accompanied by an audio file giving the history of that location. The narration also appeals to the youngest users, enabling them to discover a huge part of the story of Gdansk.

8. Kazimierz Water Reservoir: A stunning panorama point in Gdansk

Kazimierz Water Reservoir on Lazurowa Street on Sobieszewo Island is an example of a contemporary water tank that combines technical, learning and educational functions. It enables the natural values of this unique area to be presented in their original settings and provides a fine panorama from the viewing balcony.

Kazimierz Water Reservoir: A stunning panorama point in Gdansk

Located far from the city's noise, the tower is a noteworthy point of interest on the tourist map of Gdansk. The visiting programme includes educational classes and must be booked in advance.

Sobieszewo Island is unique in itself, an urban area with an extensive zone of natural or semi-natural vegetation that provides sanctuary for many unique plant species. The island is considered the most valuable natural object of Gdansk, which is why Gdansk City Council has designated it a protected landscape area. Sobieszewo Island is a great spot for spending time close to nature, strolling and riding a bike.

9. Get into a kayak and explore Gdansk from the water!

Gdansk is astounding in all seasons and from all perspectives! Kayaking is certainly one of the unique ways to explore the city of Neptune.

10 Best Things To Do In Gdańsk, Poland

Safety is considered to be of the utmost importance by the Gdansk Kayak Team, which is why they have begun to organize kayaking tours, rather than merely renting the equipment. The presence of an instructor is not only a guarantee of safety but it also provides a great opportunity for the tour participants to develop their kayaking skills and to learn about the places included in the sightseeing programme.

A few water sightseeing options are available, ranging from 90-minute tours to full-day excursions. The idea has proven popular – after participating in their first kayaking tour, many visitors feel tempted to return.

Discover Gdansk from the water for yourself, and in particular from the kayak. Unforgettable adventures are within the reach of a paddle!

10. The Oliwa Zoo, or how to spend a day among wild animals

It is located in Oliwa, one of the charming districts of Gdansk. It was established on May 1, 1954 in the Tricity Landscape Park and occupies almost 125 hectares today.

The Oliwa Zoo

Gdańsk Zoo was established among beautiful landscapes of the Leśny Młyn valley and animals lived there in a natural environment. The beginnings were tough, e.g. due to the lack of funds, and the institution cared for 43 animals during the first months of its operation. The first exotic animals were gifts from sailors. One year after the opening of the Zoo, a single-humped she-camel walked there as well as the first lion called Bim; in the 1980ies, about 800 animals representing 176 species lived in the Zoo. The number of animals has been increasing systematically since the 1990ies and numerous changes have been introduced. 

A Mini Zoo is established; it is the only place in the Zoo where one can come close to animals – the peaceful and small ones, of course. One can feed and stroke a goat or a rabbit. First investments include the construction of an aviary, reptile house, monkey house, a new enclosure for giraffes and lions. The Zoo currently takes care of nearly 200 species, or 1004 animals including a green tree frog, Nile crocodile, yellow anaconda, Andean condor, jackass penguin, bongo antelope, cheetah, pygmy hippopotamus, Katanga lion, maned wolf and a giraffe.

Most importantly, here are the best hotels an accommodations in Gdańsk.


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