Anyone who’s backpacked or travelled to a few countries will always get asked the same question when they return home: Which country is the best?

Hint: It’s Poland

Though I may not have travelled to all 196 (195 to some, sorry Taiwan) countries yet, I can still say that in my experience Poland has been truly outstanding.

Warsaw, Lublin, Krakow, Wroclaw, and the country itself have all been gems in their own right  – not to mention they are…

Superbly Nice People

Need directions? No problem. Polish locals were more than happy to help a bearded backpacker find his way around.

Need a couch? Right this way. I’ve slept on many couches during my adventures abroad and Polish people were by far the most genuine and hospitable hosts I’ve ever had the pleasure of staying with.

Want to explore? Let’s go. Many of my hosts and other people I met went out of their way to show me a special part of their city and its…

Fascinatingly Rich History

Stalin-2 soviet tank, Polish Army open-air Museum
Stalin-2 soviet tank, Polish Army open-air Museum

Did you know Copernicus was Polish? Poland has also been through both world wars and the cold war – and that’s only this century (43 wars since 1600). Positioned snugly between Russia and Germany as the 9th largest European nation, Poland has seen some of the most historic events in recorded history.

I visited a dozen history museums including a walking tour of Aushwitz and can say they capture it all very well. Though afterwards you’ll need time to sit and think with a…

Great Beer

Thats right. After contemplating the inhumanity of the holocaust, stop by a local pub and ask for a polish brew like Zywiec or Tyskie. Or try a crowd favorite: a shot of vodka and a pickle (surprisingly good combination).

Then sit back, relax and enjoy the…

Incredibly Beautiful Country

Yes indeed. Bouncing back hard from the cold gray colors of the soviet union, Poland has outdone itself in putting color back into everything.

Flower gardens and painted homes dot the streets and abandoned bomb shelters converted to nightclubs shine through the night.

Not to mention it’s…


I can 100% attest that the dollar goes a long way in Poland. Their Zloty currency is 4:1 to USD and everything is cheaper.

Dormitory style hostels can go for as low as $4 a night while a bus from Warsaw to Krakow is under $10 and pints are under $2. I don’t know about you, but I feel lucky to find a $2 beer in the US unless it’s a Tuesday night at a dive bar.

Even with all that, I believe that the cost effectiveness of Poland is most valuable with your ability to buy it’s …

Delicious Food

As you may know, pierogies are fried potato dumplings that you buy frozen in bags at the supermarket. Did you know they can be filled with anything from blueberries to feta cheese?

Not only are the pierogies freshly made in about every restaurant you can find (especially in pierogi-only restaurants called pierogarnia like Zapiecek), but their kielbasa and pizza and kluski slaskie and zapiekanka and golumpki are all making my mouth water as I write this.

Part of the EU

That’s right. Even though they’re not using the Euro, Poland is still a member of the EU. That means you can travel to most nearby countries with ease. Germany, the Czech Republic, and Lithuania all border Poland and the rest of Europe is within a few hours flight. No customs if you’re travelling through 🙂

Go to Poland

Honestly, you should definitely check out Poland. Not only does it have the nicest people, most beautiful countryside, delicious food, incredible history, and cheap beer, but the energy and culture you’ll feel while travelling the country is one I could never describe.

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