Royal Baths of Warsaw are one of the most popular destinations in the capital of Poland. To be honest, Warsaw itself is probably my least favorite place of my home country. However, the Royal Baths of Warsaw is a place I really enjoyed re-visiting and highly recommend seeing, if you ever make the trip to the capital of Poland.
I always think of the Royal Baths as the Central Park of New York or Hyde Park of London. It’s the beautifully peaceful, getaway from the chaos of the city. The 76 hectares of green grass, ponds and sculptures, make it the largest park in Warsaw.
Though the Royal Baths of Warsaw are quite popular, I’m not sure how many folks actually know what to look for in this gorgeous park and if they do find it, are they fully aware of what they’re looking at.
Below I have compiled a list of sights I recommend looking for, as well as a little bit of history, to tickle your fancy.
1. Palace on the Isle
The Palace on the Isle is at the heart of the Royal Baths and just so happens to be where this royal garden got its name.
The Palace is actually an Italian inspired, extended and upgraded bath house, which then served as a summer residency for the very last king of Poland, Stanisław Poniatowski (but for your sake we’ll just call him Stan).
During his ruling, Stan was known for his ambitious plan of reforming Poland into a modern nation. It wasn’t doing too well back then.
The Palaces’ impressive design was to symbolize Stan’s dream of his ideal, peaceful, modern nation and quickly became storage for his collection of fine art, which can be admired today for an entrance fee.
During World War II, the Palace was nearly destroyed. It was renovated and restored to its former shape, quickly becoming a beacon of hope for Warsaw after the German occupation.
2. White House
The White House was actually the very first construction built in the Royal Baths of Warsaw during Stan’s rule. Unlike the White House of the USA, this polish White House was the residency of the royal family, but not the King himself. The White House is, however, connected to the Palace on the Isle, by a wide avenue.
The White House was not destroyed during World Was II, so it remains till this day in its original state.
The amphitheater sits on the water across from Stan’s Palace and was built during the same time as the renovation of the Palace.
Its design was influenced by Roman ruins and can seat 1000 guests. During the summer months the amphitheater is still utilized for concerts and performances.
4. Chinese Garden
So besides politics, fine art, reforming a country and Italian architecture, Stan was really into all things oriental. The White House’s entertainment room is actually decorated with Chinese wallpaper and paintings, reflecting Chinese people living their day-to-day life.
But paintings and tapestry weren’t enough for Stan, ouh no! He had a whole garden with a pavilion, a bridge, lions and everything, constructed in the northern part of the Royal Baths of Warsaw. Chinese lanterns, garnish the avenues leading up to the Palace on the Isle.
There is actually two of these.
The Old Orangery
During Stan’s time, the old orangery was used to store exotic trees during the freezing, winter months.
Nowadays, this is where you can find the Royal Theater and a gallery of sculptures, most Italian, French or carved by some of the most remarkable, polish artists.
It’s open Tuesday – Sunday 9:00am – 4:00pm
The New Orangery
Today the new orangery is where all the exotic plants are stored. It is also where you can find the award winning Belvedere Restaurant. Famous for its architectural design and the steal walls, interwinding with green shrubbery. It’s a beautiful composition of lush greenery, exotic wood with an industrial twist.
6. Monument of Chopin
Only because it’s the most famous polish monument in the entire world!
In case your wandering, the monument shows Fryderyk Chopin sitting under a weeping willow tree, which looks like it’s trying to survive a category one hurricane. (I honestly couldn’t figure that out for the longest time.) Chopin is depicted like he’s listening to music and pressing down on piano keys with his right hand.
The original Monument was unfortunately destroyed and chopped up by Nazis, only to be reconstructed and revealed 18 years later.
During the summer months, every Sunday, you can come and enjoy a Chopin concert.
7. Don’t miss the Wild Life (though it is kind of hard to miss)
As the jewel of a busy city, the Royal Baths of Warsaw are of lush green grass, flowers of sorts and little creatures wherever you set your gaze.
It is a breath of fresh air and an escape from crowds, noise and concrete. Among all the art work and architecture, don’t forget to meet the residents, who have made the Royal Baths of Warsaw, their home
8. Monument of King John III Sobieski
King John Sobieski ruled before Stan, but had earned his respect and admiration. The monument shows Sobieski on a horse trampling Turkish soldiers.
The monument was exhibited after a war exploded between the Russians and the Turks. Among other reasons, it was exhibited to represent what side of the war Poland was on.
But the REAL reason why you should visit the Sobieski’s Monument, is so that when you get there, you turn around and take a beautiful shot with the Palace on the Isle, nested among trees!
Once you visit one of the most beautiful places in Warsaw, don’t forget to drop by and let me know what your favorite part was, in the comments below.