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About Warsaw

Warsaw is the large and vibrant capital of Poland with a population well over 1.5 million. This alpha global city is a major tourist attraction and is quickly becoming Eastern Europe’s trendy art, culture and nightlife capital. Warsaw is famed for its chic and restored Old Town, the beautiful and lively Market Square and the Warsaw Mermaid Monument.

Cheap flights to Warsaw are now available for a limited period of time, so prepare to uncover the mysteries hidden in this incredibly historic city! Warsaw is home to Warsaw Chopin Airport (WAW) which is a 15 minute drive from the city centre. WAW serves a multitude of airlines including LOT Polish Airlines, Swiss Airlines, Lufthansa and British Airways. Affordable flights to Warsaw depart from Cape Town and Johannesburg. Flight duration from Johannesburg to Warsaw is approximately 13 hours and 30 minutes.

Why visit Warsaw

warsaw friends beer restaurant

Craft Beer and Cuisine

Take an incredible craft beer tour through Warsaw’s many traditional and trendy pubs, or relax at a picturesque café or restaurant where you can enjoy local dishes, like a delicious Polish Pierogi.

warsaw mermaid monument river bank

Majestic Monuments

Admire the majestic Warsaw Mermaid Monument, the city’s brave protector, located on the banks of the Vistula River or visit the War Memorial Wall at the famous Warsaw Uprising Museum.

warsaw palace on the water

Beautiful Ancient Architecture

The city is home to palaces and fortresses of a variety of architectural designs like the renaissance Warsaw Barbican fortress and the neoclassical Lazienki Palace on the water.

General information

Essential details you need to know before your trip

Country Poland
Currency Polish Złoty
Exchange Rate 1 ZAR = 0.28 PLN
Language Polish, English
Hub Airport Warsaw Chopin Airport (WAW)
Airline LOT Polish Airlines
Time Zone GMT +01:00
Travel Adaptor Type E

Best time to visit Warsaw

Warsaw’s humid continental climate creates cold, snowy winters and warm, sunny summers. The warmer months, between May and October, are the peak tourist months in Warsaw. The warm temperatures, especially during July and August, are perfect for sightseeing and exploring popular attractions like the Royal Route or the beautifully restored Old City. Between September and April, temperatures drop and the city is less crowded, but this vibrant city keeps its energetic artistic and cultural tempo. The new, modern side of town has a multitude of art galleries and museums to explore and the annual Warsaw film festival takes place in October. This is also a great time to save money as it is low travel season in Warsaw and air fares, accommodation and general costs will be lower.

Weather & Climate in Warsaw

Average temperature (°C) & rainfall (mm) per month

Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Low (°C) -6°C -6°C -2°C 3°C 8°C 12°C 13°C 12°C 9°C 5°C 1°C -3°C
High (°C) 1°C 0°C 5°C 13°C 19°C 22°C 24°C 23°C 18°C 13°C 6°C 1°C
Rainfall (mm) 22 23 25 33 53 67 71 58 43 35 39 32

Overview

Warsaw, the large and vibrant capital of Poland, is a major tourist attraction and quickly becoming Eastern Europe’s trendy art, culture and nightlife capital.

This alpha global city is famed for its beautiful, restored Old Town, lively Market Square with its picturesque restaurants and cafés. Explore incredible architectural monuments scattered throughout the city, like the Barbican Fortress and the gorgeous Lazienki Palace.

The majestic Warsaw Mermaid Monument on the banks of the Vistula River and the War Memorial Wall at the famous Warsaw Uprising Museum are reminiscent of the city’s rich and vast history. Take a stroll through the beautiful Lazienki Park that leads to the Royal Palace, Wilanów Palace and the Lazienki Palace on the water.

Beer fanatics, can join a Warsaw craft beer tour and delight in the distinct flavours of local beers at various pubs. The Old Town hosts numerous art galleries and picturesque cafes to get lost in. Once you have exhausted your energy, take a break at one of many inviting restaurants where you can enjoy a famous Polish Pierogi or for cheaper prices find a traditional milk bar where affordable yet delicious soups and other dairy-based dishes are served.

Compare several airlines, and book your cheap flights to Warsaw online with Travelstart!

Visa & Customs

Poland is part of the Schengen Area, so you are required to have a Schengen visa to enter the country. Ensure your South African passport is valid for at least six months beyond your date of return and has at least two blank pages available for stamps.

The Polish Embassy in South Africa can be found at 14 Amos Street, Colbyn in Pretoria. Note that they are closed on Polish public holidays.

Tel: 012-430-2631/2

Email: e20@mweb.co.za

Health & Safety

Make sure your routine vaccines that include the MMR vaccine, DPT, Chickenpox, Polio and yearly flu shots are updated before travel. Most travellers are advised to get the Hepatitis A vaccine. There are no specific vaccine requirements or health issues in Poland, however it is best to practise safe hygiene and avoid drinking tap water.

Warsaw is a safe city but you should still practise normal safety precautions. Keep your valuables and important documentation safe and watch out for petty crimes like bag-snatching or pick-pocketing. The 175 bus route that operates from the airport to the city centre is notorious for these crimes. Avoid unsavoury areas, especially at night or when alone, and try not to get into any confrontations with locals.

Cost of Living

Item Johannesburg Cape Town Warsaw
Meal (inexpensive restaurant) R 90.00 R 100.00 R 86.00
Domestic beer (0.5 litre draught) R 22.00 R 20.00 R 28.00
Cappuccino (regular) R 19.00 R 20.00 R 30.00
Taxi 1km (normal tariff) R 10.00 R 12.00 R 28.00
Pack of cigarettes (Marlboro) R 35.00 R 35.00 R 52.00
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