Warsaw on a Budget: The Top 8 Affordable Things To Do
So you’re looking for the perfect budget travel destination in Europe? We have some good news for you: Warsaw is an excellent option. Although it has witnessed significant economic development—Warsaw is very affordable for budget travelers.
Better still, Warsaw has many top-class things to do. You can walk around the beautiful Warsaw Old Town, relax in the local parks during summer, visit the city’s historic Soviet buildings, enjoy the city’s best viewpoints, and try unique local cuisine.
Here are the top things to do on a budget in Warsaw:
1. Wander Around the Old Town
Let’s begin with the best and cheapest attraction in the city: Warsaw Old Town. Unfortunately, the Second World War destroyed much of Warsaw’s Old Town, and only six out of 260 buildings survived. However, the local community came together to create the largest reconstruction of its type ever.
Begin your walk from Castle Square, a gorgeous square packed with bars, restaurants, and souvenir shops. You’ll walk past the iconic Sigmund’s Column, the oldest monument to a person not religion-related in Europe.
After that, climb St. Anne’s Church for incredible views of Warsaw and Old Town and visit the Royal CastleLink opens in a new tab. The next spot to visit is the Old Town Market Place with a Mermaid. You can see the sculpture of a mermaid, which Warsaw considers the city’s protector and coat of arms.
Next, walk across the other side of Warsaw Old Town, where you’ll find the City Walls and the Barbican. During the Swedish Deluge, The Barbican was supposed to protect the city—but it only performed its defensive function once.
2. Visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
One of the top-budget things to do in Warsaw is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. It’s a commemorative symbol for all the Polish soldiers who died fighting for Polish independence. You can currently find the tomb under a small line of three arcades. The arcades were part of a palace called Saski Palace that was destroyed by the Second World War.
However, the Polish government planned the reconstruction of Saski Palace in 2023, helping to restore the city even more. Entering the tomb is free of charge and near many other top attractions.
3. Relax in Lazienki Park
European cities are well-known for their excellent green spaces—and Warsaw is no different. There are ample green places to relax, but Lazienki Park remains the top one with zero entry fees. You can also find various attractions in the park, such as the Palace on the Isle, a small Amphitheater, and a monument of Frederic Chopin.
In addition, Lazienki ParkLink opens in a new tab has many events—especially in the summer. These include the Chopin Concerts in the Royal Lazienki, which returned after two years in 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The park spans an impressive 76 hectares in the city center, so there’s space to play football, go jogging, and eat food.
4. Walk Around Praga District
Would you like to see a rawer side of Warsaw? If so, the district of Praga—situated next to the Vistula River—is the perfect place. It’s an excellent place to appreciate the history and urban side of Warsaw.
The best way to explore the Praga DistrictLink opens in a new tab is a free walking tour. You’ll find old, renovated buildings, traditional marketplaces, hippie locations, and impressive new buildings. You could almost call it the ‘Brooklyn of Warsaw’.
5. Check Out the Warsaw Uprising Museum
The Warsaw Uprising is one of the most significant events in World War 2. It took place in 1944, and you can still see its impact today. As a result, broadening your knowledge about it when visiting Warsaw is a must—and that’s where the Warsaw Uprising Museum comes in.
The museum finally opened on the 60th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising in 2004. Tickets cost around 20 Polish Zloty ($6). Once inside the museum, you’ll find various video, audio, and interactive exhibits showcasing the uprising and the history of Jews in Warsaw.
6. Enjoy the Palace of Culture and Science
As far as affordable attractions go, the Palace of Culture and Science is arguably the best. The palace was a gift from the Soviet Union to Poland; it’s a crucial part of Poland’s 21st history. You can visit the observation deck—which offers incredible views from the 30th floor—for only 20 Polish Zloty ($6). An absolute bargain.
Likewise, the palace also has other affordable attractions, including a cinema, museum, and trendy pubs. Moreover, the palace looks fantastic next to the modern skyscrapers of the Warsaw Business District.
7. Bathe on the Vistula River Beaches
Warsaw can get very hot during the summer, but you can cool down at the various beaches alongside the Vistula RiverLink opens in a new tab. Better still, these beaches are completely free to visit. There are three options: one near the zoo, one near Lazienkowski Bridge, and another near Poniatowskiego Bridge.
During the summer, there are volleyball nets and football matches on the beaches. They’re fantastic for eating and drinking with friends while bathing in the Central European sunshine.
8. Observe the Warsaw Fountain Light Show
Warsaw has its own version of the Bellagio Fountains: The Fountain Light Show. During the summer, the Riverside Fountain show begins on Fridays and Saturdays at 9.30 pm and 9.00 pm in September. The best views are from the Podzamcze Multimedia Fountain Park, and the shows are free.
The light show offers an insight into the history of Warsaw and an impressive water show with water shooting 25 meters into the air. In addition, the fountains are an excellent place to cool your body during the summer.
Warsaw: An Excellent Budget Destination in Europe
Warsaw isn’t one of the most popular destinations in Europe. However, with that said, it’s an underrated gem that’s affordable for manyLink opens in a new tab. The city has history, heritage, great food, and superb architecture.
Give it a go if you’re looking to save money.