EuroTribe

your guide to Europe off the beaten path

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How to spend 24 hours in Łódź

Łódź is the third largest city in Poland and it’s easily accessed by train, with the journey lasting about one hour and forty minutes from Warsaw. Another option is bus…

Łódź is the third largest city in Poland and it’s easily accessed by train, with the journey lasting about one hour and forty minutes from Warsaw. Another option is bus which comes at a cheaper price, but extends your travel time to two hours and forty-five minutes. Łódź was famous all over Europe for its cotton cloth yields and even called the “Promised Land”, after it became one of the largest textile production centers in Europe. That is the reason why even today the city is referred to as the Polish “Manchester”. The 20th century saw a very hard period for the city with Lodz’s population almost decimated after WW2. The industry and infrastructure were heavily destroyed as well.

Łódź itself contains a mysterious aura that can be very intriguing and fascinating, whether it’s that melancholic feeling of experiencing some of its rich old prosperous times mixed with its rapid present development, but the city itself deserves more attention from tourists and prospective travelers. In recent years the city is often overlooked by many tourists for more popular destinations in the country, and due to a lack of investment even major parts of the city suffer from poor infrastructure which can lead some to the impression; “is this really the third-largest Polish city?” Nevertheless, thanks to its beautiful palaces, rich cultural heritage, its Polish Film School, and its kind people who are always ready to help, makes you leave this city with a warm heart.

How to spend 24 hours in Łódź?

Piotrkowska Street

Piotrkowska street

First, why not start with something that Łódź is most famous for! Its PIOTRKOWSKA STREET. The ideal place for starting your sightseeing would be at the Plac Wolności, or Liberty Square, where the beginning of the street starts and continues its long length of about 4.2 kilometers, making it known as one of Europe’s largest commercial streets.

The street is home to wonderful architecture, housing and monuments – with probably the most popular feature being the Arthur Rubinstein monument, who was born in Łódź and grew up in this street. Another popular feature is the monument of the “Three Manufacturers”. It is also known as the Łódź Walk of Fame for its star-plaques which includes the names of the most important stars in Polish cinematography.

In addition to its shops, during the night the street comes alive with entertainment, having more than one hundred pubs, restaurants and clubs along its way. If you have a tight time-frame to discover all the street offers, do not worry as there are many rickshaws or trambuses along the street which is probably a good idea to invest your money in if you are in a hurry.

Manufaktura

Manufaktura Lodz

One of the things that should not be missed include MANUFAKTURA – which is a place mixed with traditional and modern elements. Traditional due to the fact this place used to be home to 19th century industrial buildings of the former Izrael Poznański’s factory and modern after its revitalisation, which made it become a popular center of entertainment, shopping and culture known all over Poland. Besides the mall, Manufaktura also has two museums, numerous restaurants and discos, a cinema and even a little tram taking you from one part of the complex to another.

What I loved about this place is how they managed to preserve the original spirit of its past in its beautiful red color facades which at the same time look very modern. This place is huge, so don’t expect to see everything if you are visiting city for only 24 hours. To make the most of your day, it’s best to visit Manufaktura during the evening, otherwise, you won’t regret a visit to this symbolic series of buildings in Łódź.

Arhitecture

If you arrive at the Łódź Kaliska station, the tram ride to the city center will take about 15-20 minutes which is already enough to gather a basic impression of the city, and its cultural heritage, which is mixed with the Jewish, German and Russian architecture styles most notable besides the local Polish style.

The city is famous for its post-industrial buildings and palaces built by the most powerful industrialists in the city and the ones who definitely deserve your attention include the Izrael Poznański’s factory and the White Factory. Poznański’s factory is the most famous Jewish landmark in the city and it is also a home to the Museum of the City of Łódź. Here you can learn more about the industrial past of the city during the 19th century. On the other hand, within the White Factory there is an Open-Air Museum of the city’s past wooden architecture.

Museum of Cinematography

Museum of Cinematography Lodz

It is very hard to see more than a handful of things in only 24 hours, but if you get the chance try to pay a visit to the Museum of Cinematography and learn more about Polish cinema and art, as Łódź offers the best cinematography in Poland.

Eating and drinking

When it comes to eating and drinking you won’t have to look far, as Piotrkowska street and Manufaktura offers you numerous pubs, cafes and restaurants with Polish and international cuisines to choose from, along with the usual fast food outlets. You can also shop for some traditional Polish souvenirs whilst in the city.

Where To Stay in Lodz

You can search for hotels in Lodz on Booking and compare cheap rates on HotelsCombined.



Booking.com

Have you ever been to Łódź or are you planning to visit? Tell us about your experience in the city, in the comments below!

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Spare time in Belgrade? Go to Avala mountain

Avala mountain is located 16 km from the capital city of Serbia, Belgrade, and it has a reputation of being a popular day or even weekend getaway from busy city…

Avala mountain is located 16 km from the capital city of Serbia, Belgrade, and it has a reputation of being a popular day or even weekend getaway from busy city life. Avala is inviting especially for its walks which allow people to relax in nature.

With a height of 511 meters, Avala fits within the ‘Mountain range’, no pun intended. In the middle ages it was famous for the Avala Town, which was later conquered by the Ottoman Turks. Today the areas surrounding Avala are not heavily populated, although the mountain’s location is very close to Belgrade’s city boundaries.

Avala mountain Belgrade

Avala is one of the protected green areas of Belgrade and it has more than 600 plant species living on the mountain. Many species are  protected by law due to their natural rarities, with 21 of the 67 bird species considered rare in Serbia.

Avala tower

Besides being famous as a traditional weekend and picnic resort, other attractions on the mountain include the newly built Avala Tower which is the tallest tower in Serbia and the Balkans region. Originally it was a telecommunication tower destroyed by the NATO bombing in 1999, with the new tower officially opened in 2010. The tower has a viewing platform on top with the beautiful view overlooking Belgrade, Vojvodina and Šumadija.

View from Avala tower

View from the tower!

One of the most famous monuments located on Avala is the “Monument to the Unknown Hero” which is a protected monument by the country.

Monument to the Unknown Hero

Monument to the Unknown Hero

For those who love sport activities besides walking, can indulge in activities including orienteering, climbing, mountain biking and running.

And if your hunger gets the best of you, on the top of the Mountain there’s a hotel with the restaurant “Avala”, dedicated to serving delicious meals.

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Is the Stockholm Card worth buying?

Stockholm is the capital of Sweden and it’s also known as the capital of Scandinavia. Stockholm is considered quite an expensive city at times but it is always worth visiting!…

Stockholm is the capital of Sweden and it’s also known as the capital of Scandinavia. Stockholm is considered quite an expensive city at times but it is always worth visiting! In this article I will review the Stockholm card and we’ll see if the Stockholm Card is worth buying.

So first of all; What is the Stockholm card exactly?

The Stockholm card is the official card issued by the Stockholm Tourist Board, which when purchased gives you access to 80 museums and attractions, public transport and many other bonus offers for the duration of the card.

The Stockholm Card’s price is based on its length of validity, which ranges from 1, 2, 3 or 5 days from the first time it is activated. The card is valid once per museum/attraction and it is valid for an unlimited amount of trips on SL transit vehicles for its duration of validity.

So let’s take a look at the prices.

Adult one day (450 SEK/51 EUR)
Adult two days (625 SEK/70 EUR)
Adult three days (750 SEK/85 EUR)
Adult five days (950 SEK/107 EUR

Now let’s check the prices of some museums and attractions;

Nobel Museum (Adults: 80 SEK)
Vasa Museum (Adults: 110 SEK)
The Royal Palace (Adults: 100 SEK)
SkyView (Adults: 130 SEK)
Fotografiska (Adults: 110 SEK)
Skansen Open-Air Museum (Adults: 70-120 SEK)
Moderna Museet (Adults: 100 SEK)

Let’s say you wish to visit all of these museums – that would cost you a total of 700 SEK, which is only a bit less than Stockholm card valid for a period of three days (750 SEK).

However, that is just the first part, let’s take a look at the cost of public transport now;

Tickets for one and two zones are valid for 75 minutes from the time of purchase and activation. Each ticket costs a total of 36 SEK, or 4 EUR for first zone and 54 SEK, or 6 EUR, for the second zone.

For a ticket with 24 hour validity, it costs a total of 115 SEK or 13 EUR, whilst a 72h ticket costs 230 SEK or 26EUR. For a 7 days ticket, the cost is 300 SEK or 34 EUR.

As you can see, public transportation is much more expensive than in other European capitals.

So if you wish to spend three days in Stockholm, plus you purchase a 72h ticket, the total price would cost you 230 SEK more due to the price of attractions costing 700 SEK plus the transport cost. In total, without the Stockholm Card, it would cost you 930 SEK or 105 EUR for 3 days. If you remember, the Stockholm three day card was only 750 SEK or 85 euros, so basically you would save at least 20 euros.

Of course it all depends on your travel tastes and what you love to do, but if you are really into culture and museums, plus you plan to stay 3 or more days in Stockholm, I think this card is very handy and helpful and also saves you the hassle of waiting in the queues and buying tickets. From my experience it was very helpful especially when it comes to using the public transport which is very expensive in Stockholm.

Also note that the prices included here were based on the price of an adult and that some museums are free of charge if you are under the age of 19, plus there are discounts for students, so the best would be to check the website of each museum you want to visit or the website of the Stockholm Tourist Board.

So Is the Stockholm Card worth buying?

Yes definitely, especially if you are staying for 3 or more days. If you are not such a culture freak and you prefer nature and exploring the city by bike, there are some other ways to save rather than using this card.

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Top attractions in Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm is the capital and the largest city of Sweden. It also constitutes the most populated urban area in Scandinavia. Built on 14 islands around one of Europe’s largest and…

Stockholm is the capital and the largest city of Sweden. It also constitutes the most populated urban area in Scandinavia. Built on 14 islands around one of Europe’s largest and best-preserved medieval city centers, the Swedish capital is superbly positioned, with stunning and extremely varied scenery in every direction. Stockholm offers a wealth of museums, theaters, sights, attractions and events. Our top attractions in Stockholm include;

Gamla Stan

Gamla Stan - Top Attractions in Stockholm

Gamla Stan or the Old town is one of the best preserved medieval city centers in the world dating back to 13th century and consisting of medieval alleyways, cobbled streets, and archaic architecture. The Old Town is the place to be if you want to experience the true pulse of this city. This area has biggest range of restaurants, tourist shops, studios and museums. One of them is Nobel Museum. It will take you a few hours to explore the whole Old Town, but at the same time this is the most charming part of Stockholm invaded by tourists who want to enjoy the special atmosphere.

Boat sightseeing

This is a must! Stockholm is located on Sweden’s south-central east coast, where Lake Malaren meets the Baltic Sea. The central parts of the city consist of fourteen islands that are continuous with the Stockholm archipelago. We definetelly recommend the tourist company Stromma. They offer many wonderful tours (Under the Bridges of Stockholm, Royal Canal Tour, Historical Canal Tour, the early Good Morning Stockholm Tour and Archipelago race tour). Having a fika (Swedish for coffee) and having a view at one of the most beautiful capitals in the world is a must! Or if you want some adrenaline rush go for Archipelago tour! (although it doesn’t operate at winter).

The Royal Palace

One of the largest palaces in Europe is the official residence of His Majesty the King of Sweden, with over 600 rooms. The Palace is open to the public and offers no less than five museums. Don’t miss the parade of soldiers and the daily changing of the guard!

Skansen Open-Air Museum

Skansen - Top attractions in Stockholm

Located on the island Djurgarden, Skansen consists of the oldest open-air museum in the world and zoo with a beautiful view of the city. This place basically represents Sweden in miniature with 150 farms and dwellings from different part of countries that were transported here. You can also see native Scandinavian animals and there is also a children’s zoo and a terrarium. Overall, it is a great place to spend a day especially with family.

Moderna Museet

Moderna Museet - Top attractions in Stockholm

Experience one of the nicest collections of art featuring works of Picasso, Dali and others. This museum is located on Skeppsholmen island and exhibits present contemporary art with modern classics. The museum also has a shop and children’s workshop.

Vasa museum

Vasa is the only preserved seventeenth-century ship in the world and more than 95 percent of the ship is original. It is decorated with hundreds of carved sculptures. The film about the Vasa is shown in 16 different languages. In addition there is a well-stocked shop and a pleasant restaurant. Tours of the museum take place every day.

Subway art

The Stockholm metro is home to the world’s “longest art exhibit” – being just over 110 kilometers long! Tourists can see a wide range of artwork including decorations with sculptures, mosaics, paintings, installations, engravings and reliefs by over 150 artists. The Swedish Tourism board describes it as “traveling by subway is like traveling through an exciting story that extends from the artistic pioneers of the 1950s to the art experiments of today”.

Shopping

Stockholm is full of fashion stores which show-off the latest in local and international fashion. Some of the most popular stores are IKEA, H&M, Gallerian Shopping Complex, Ahlens City and others. Besides fancy clothes, there are many souvenir shops located across the city. To find the best prices, head into the Old Town for more variety and cheaper options for the bargain hunting traveler!

Where to Stay

Stockholm is very expensive so I suggest searching for a cheaper accommodation on HotelsCombined.  You can also check large selection of accommodation options on Booking. If you’re really on the budget you may try to find a free accommodation on Couchsurfing.

Getting there

You can search for a cheap flight to Stockholm by comparing rates on Momondo.

Other advice:

Stockholm card

Any traveler heading to Stockholm should pick up the Stockholm Card which gives you free admission to 80 museums and attractions. The card includes rides on a sightseeing boat or ferry, the subway, an SL bus, or a streetcar. Travelers can also browse excellent museums with art, aristocrats, world heritage, Vikings, the Nobel Prize, technology, and design. Basically, the city is yours. The card can be purchased for 1-5 days from the first time it’s used. The card is valid once per museum/attraction and is good for an unlimited number of trips on SL transit vehicles.

Stockholm, only one adventure away.

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