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Modern architecture an attraction of Polish cities

Poland’s Amazing Buildings

Many cities around Poland boast unusual examples of contemporary architecture which in themselves have become fascinating tourist attractions.

Among them one especially worth seeing is an award-winner of many prestigious architectural competitions, namely the building of the Mieczysław Karłowicz Philharmonic in Szczecin at 48 Małopolska St. Its ice-like form has been hailed as the city’s new icon. It is an extraordinary place, open to fans of classical music as well as children and teenagers, giving them a venue for alternative sound experiences blended with visual art.

In the Polish capital, meanwhile, you will find many noteworthy structures – from architectural features like the Multimedia Fountain Park on the Vistula riverbank (Podzamcze area, I Dywizji Pancernej Square) to giant edifices like the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews at 6 Mordechaja Anielewicza St., which has won many awards in architectural competitions. The POLIN Museum’s special feature is its unusual main hall whose dynamic undulating walls split the whole interior of the building. This is an architectural symbol of the gap in the history of Polish Jews, left by the Holocaust and post-war repressions. It is the museum’s role to restore remembrance and build bonds between the past and the present – just like the bridge high above the cleft of the main hall connects its two sides.

Among many architectural attractions, Warsaw also prides itself on the University of Warsaw Library Roof Garden at 56/66 Dobra St. It quickly gained recognition as one of the largest and most beautiful roof gardens in Europe. It stretches across an area of over 1 hectare, with vegetation occupying 5,111 sq. m, and comprises two sections: upper (2,000 sq. m) and lower (15,000 sq. m), connected by a stream with cascading water. You can admire a panorama of Warsaw from the observation deck. Visitors can also look into the library from above, through special windows and the glass roof; another bonus: admission is free.

An architectural gem among museums can also be found in Kraków: the MOCAK Museum of Contemporary Art at 4 Lipowa St. It showcases art from the last 20 years, explains the sense of producing art as well as showing its value and its ties to everyday reality. One of the objectives the museum’s founders set themselves was to reduce prejudice against modern art and reach the widest possible audience. The building itself is a unique work of art designed by Claudio Nardi. This is architecture marked by advanced technology, with a light and bright structure that blends in perfectly with the surroundings.

The stadiums built for the EURO 2012 Football Championship are another interesting example of spectacular modern architecture in Poland. Among them is the Energa Stadium in Gdańsk (formerly Arena Gdańsk) at 1 Pokoleń Lechii Gdańsk St., one of the most modern sports buildings in Europe, included in the “Elite” category. Its shape and the gold colour of its roof is reminiscent of a piece of amber while its load-bearing elements are a reference to shipyard cranes – one of the symbols of Gdańsk.

  • Mieczysław Karłowicz Philharmonic in Szczecin
    Mieczysław Karłowicz Philharmonic in Szczecin
  • Multimedia Fountain Park on the Vistula riverbank
    Multimedia Fountain Park on the Vistula riverbank
  • POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews
    POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews
  • MOCAK Museum of Contemporary Art
    MOCAK Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Energa Stadium in Gdańsk
    Energa Stadium in Gdańsk

These are just a few structures among the many, often truly stunning examples of contemporary architecture to be found in Polish cities. Be inspired and visit other unique architectural sites in Poland as well!

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Polish National Tourist Office
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Phone: 1 (551) 344-3057
e-mail: info.na@poland.travel