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Monday, 05.12.2016
17:00 UTC

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Good to know

City map Katowice

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    Good to know

    Katowice – a brief overview

    At the heart of Upper Silesia, a vast area in the south of Poland, Katowice is one of Poland’s most important cities. It came to prominence during the 1800s and boomed at the start of the last century, with industry at its heart. Today, it plays home to a string of important cultural attractions, including the stunning Spodek concert hall.

    Stroll the streets and see a huge range of superb architecture, from early-20th-century gems to ancient relics. Often overlooked, Katowice is an impressive, fast-changing city that is surely set to become one of Europe’s hottest new city break destinations.

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    Top 10 sights in Katowice

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    Kattowitz, Polen, Lufthansa, Travelguide, Travel Guide, Volleyball

    Church of St Michael Archangel

    Kościuszki Park
    Gawronów 20
    Katowice
    Poland
    Tel: +48 32 757 3304
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Sunrise to sunset

    This lovely wooden church was built in 1510 and moved to its present location in Kosciuszko Park in 1938, as one of a number of buildings showing off traditional Silesian design. It remains a working church to this day.

    Jewish Cemetery

    Ulica Kozielska 16
    Katowice
    Poland
    Tel: +48 32 251 1022
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Mon-Thu and Sat-Sun 0800-1700
    Fri 0800-1200

    Dating back to 1868, this pretty cemetery is full of impressive tombstones and mausoleums. Partially destroyed by the Nazis, it was expanded after WWII and remains one of Poland’s key Jewish sites.

    Spodek

    Aleja Wojciecha Korfantego 35
    40005 Katowice
    Poland
    Tel: +48 32 258 3261
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Various

    The ‘saucer’ is worth heading to even if you haven’t got tickets for one of the myriad sports and music events which take place here all year round. An impressive piece of Communist-era design, it stands out even in a town renowned for its buildings.

    History of Katowice Museum

    ul Rymarska 4
    Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Tue and Thu 1000-1500
    Wed and Fri 1000-1730
    Sat-Sun 1100-1400

    The History Museum runs a number of key sights across the city, but its main base is in an impressive tenement building. It houses recreations of homes from different periods in Katowice’s history and an excellent gallery, focusing on religious art.

    Nikiszowiec

    Ulica Rymarska 4
    40425 Katowice
    Poland
    Tel: +48 32 353 9559
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Tue-Fri 1000-1800
    Sat-Sun 1100-1500

    Run by the History Museum, Nikiszowiec is a suburb designed and built for miners who worked in the area during the 1920s. Well preserved, this area of town is the best way to learn about Katowice’s industrial past.

    Silesian Museum

    Aleja Wojciecha Korfantego 3
    40005 Katowice
    Poland
    Tel: +48 32 258 5661
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Tue-Fri 1000-1700
    Sat-Sun 1100-1700

    Housed in a glorious, one-time hotel, this excellent museum is full of artefacts relating to the ethnography and archaeology of Silesia, which now forms part of southern Poland. There are also displays from local modern artists.

    BWA Contemporary Art Gallery

    aleja Wojciecha Korfantego 6
    40-004 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Tue-Sun 1000-1800

    Showcasing the best in contemporary art from up-and-coming locals and other key Polish artists. Regular workshops and challenging exhibitions make this one of the most vital places in Katowice.

    Rondo Art Gallery

    Jerzego Ziętka 1
    40-001 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Tue-Fri 1100-1900
    Sat-Sun 1000-1800

    Found on one of the city’s busiest roundabouts, this unlikely location is home to one of Katowice’s other superb modern art galleries. Student works and a revolving door of exhibitions keep this place fresh and exciting.

    Garrison Church of St Casimir

    M. Skłodowskiej-Curie 20 1
    40-058 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Various

    A work of art deco genius, this Catholic church looks plain from the outside. Walk into its cool interior though, and be wowed by superb religious art and design. One of Katowice’s most exquisite buildings.

    Archdiocesan Museum

    ul. Jordana 39
    Kattowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Tue-Thu 1400-1800 (Sep-Jun during temporary exhibitions)
    Sat 1100-1500 (Sep-Jun during temporary exhibitions)

    Come here to see some truly stunning late-14th-century religious art. The Gothic paintings and sculptures are utterly unique and beautiful and offer an insight into the piety of the area. If you go to one museum in Katowice, make it this one.

    Good to know

    Country information

    Country overview

    One of Europe’s most underrated countries, Poland offers a huge amount for travellers of all stripes, from the wild scenery of its mountainous south, with its great skiing and hiking, to the stunning Old Towns of Cracow, Zamość and Gdańsk, and the wilderness of the Białowieża National Park and the Great Masurian Lakes in the country’s north. Poland’s scenic beauty is as varied as it is extraordinary.

    The Baltic coast has some excellent sandy beaches, as well as the Słowiński National Park with its ethereal forests, bogs and sand dunes. The Cracow-Wielun Upland with its limestone areas, caves and medieval castles is another highlight, while perhaps most beautiful area of all is around the Carpathian Mountains in the far south.

    Geography

    Poland shares borders to the east and northeast with Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Lithuania and the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad, to the south with the Czech Republic and Slovakia and to the west with Germany. To the north lies the Baltic Sea. The Baltic coast provides almost 525km (325 miles) of sandy beaches, bays and steep cliffs; between Gdańsk, and the port city of Szczecin to the west there are many seaside towns offering unpolluted water and some fine beaches, with sunbeds and umbrellas available for hire. These sand and gravel deposits also form the shifting dunes of Słowiński National Park, the sand bars of Hel and the Vistula Lagoon.

    Northern Poland is dominated by lakes, islands and wooded hills joined by many rivers and canals. The Masurian Lake District to the northeast is a patchwork of lakes and forests with Lake Hańcza, the deepest lake in Poland, located here. The longest river, the 1,090km (675 mile) Vistula, or Wisła, rises in the Tatra mountains and empties into the Baltic, cutting a wide valley between the capital, Warsaw in the heart of the country, to Gdańsk on the coast.

    The rest of the country rises slowly to the Sudety mountains, which run along the border with the Czech Republic, and the Tatra mountains, which separate Poland from Slovakia.

    To the west, the River Oder, with Szczecin at its mouth, forms the northwest border with Germany.

    Poland counts almost two dozen national parks, covering an area of 3,200 sq km (1,235 sq miles), and including the oldest, Białowieża National Park, east of Warsaw on the border with Belarus, and one of the largest, Bieszczady National Park, part of the Carpathian mountain range. These parks are home to European bison (the largest mammal in Europe), brown bears, lynx, wolves and even some wild horses. And Białowieża contains a fragment of the forest that once covered Europe prehistoric times, with some oaks dating back half a millennium. Polish forests are largely pine though, accounting for two-thirds of the total.

    General knowledge

    Key facts

    Population: 38383809

    Population Density (per sq km): 123

    Capital: Warsaw.

    Language

    Polish is the official language. There are a few small German-speaking communities primarily in the southwest. English and, increasingly less so, Russian are also spoken. French is also popular.

    Currency

    Złoty (PLN; symbol zł) = 100 groszy. Notes are in denominations of zł200, 100, 50, 20 and 10. The coins are in denominations of zł5, 2 and 1, and 50, 20, 10, 5, 2 and 1 groszy. Poland is required under the terms of its accession to the European Union in 2004 to adopt the Euro as its national currency sometime in the future but this is not expected to happen for at least three years.

    Electricity

    230 volts AC, 50Hz; continental plugs with two round pins.

    General business opening hours

    Most offices in major industries open Mon-Fri 0830-1700. Government offices are open Mon-Fri 0830-1630. A few independent businesses may open on Saturday morning.

    Public holidays

    Below are listed Public Holidays for the January 2016 – December 2017 period.

    2016

    New Year’s Day: 1. January 2016
    Easter Sunday: 27. March 2016
    Easter Monday: 28. March 2016
    Labour Day: 1. May 2016
    National Day: 3. May 2016
    Ascension Day: 15. May 2016
    Corpus Christi: 26. May 2016
    Assumption: 15. August 2016
    All Saints’ Day: 1. November 2016
    Independence Day: 11. November 2016
    Christmas Day: 25. December 2016
    Second Day of Christmas: 26. December 2016

    2017

    New Year’s Day: 1. January 2017
    Easter Sunday: 16. April 2017
    Easter Monday: 17. April 2017
    Labour Day: 1. May 2017
    National Day: 3. May 2017
    Ascension Day: 4. June 2017
    Corpus Christi: 15. June 2017
    Assumption: 15. August 2017
    All Saints’ Day: 1. November 2017
    Independence Day: 11. November 2017
    Christmas Day: 25. December 2017
    Second Day of Christmas: 26. December 2017

    Enjoy

    Nightlife in Katowice

    ListMap

    Nightlife in Katowice centres on Ulica Mariacki. This once seedy spot is now full of a wide array of bars and clubs that have helped improve the city’s after-hours scene.

    Whether you want a classy cocktail or fancy hanging out with Katowice’s arty hipsters, there are plenty of places where the drinks flow freely.

    Sky Bar

    Uniwersytecka 13
    40-007 Kattowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    On the 27th floor of the Altus Tower, this fancy bar serves well-mixed drinks to match the spectacular views.

    Śruba i Przyjaciele

    Mariacka 16
    40-014 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    A spit and sawdust dive bar that’s perfect for those who love rock music on the jukebox.

    Biała Małpa

    3 Maja 38
    40-097 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Biała Małpa, or The White Monkey, is bar that loves beer, with 100 different bottles and 14 draughts to choose from.

    Hipnoza Jazz Club

    plac Sejmu Śląskiego 2
    40-032 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    This ultra-hip joint is always packed and puts on local and international acts.

    Archibar

    Dyrekcyjna 9
    40-013 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Found in the Architects’ Union building, this is the place to come to drink cocktails and hang out with Katowice’s coolest people.

    Enjoy

    Restaurants in Katowice

    ListMap

    Classic Polish places and a decent array of Italian eateries are the mainstays of Katowice.

    However, as the city becomes a more popular tourist stop-off, there are a growing number of decent alternatives, including some seriously good Asian food.

    Tatiana

    Staromiejska 5
    40-013 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Price: Expensive

    Katowice’s best restaurant, serving beautifully crafted local cuisine, including superb dumplings and even rabbit.

    Little Hanoi...and more

    Staromiejska 4
    40-013 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Price: Moderate

    Vietnamese food isn’t the first thing you’d think of in Poland, but this joint dishes up an excellent take on that freshest of Asian cuisines.

    Restauracja Krysztalowa

    Warszawska 5
    40-009 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Price: Moderate

    A slice of old Silesian style, Krysztalowa serves local delicacies such as catfish.

    Złoty Osioł

    Ulica Mariacka 1
    Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Price: Cheap

    This excellent vegetarian restaurant has a colourful dining room and creates superb, healthy lunches.

    Zaklęty Czardasz

    Kopernika 9
    40-001 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Price: Cheap

    Hungarian and Polish classics abound at this traditional spot – be sure to try the goulash.

    Discover

    Calendar of events

    Katowice Street Art Festival

    15 – 24 May 2016
    Website

    Venue: Various venues.

    Cutting-edge street artists show off their finest work in Katowice every May. The festival involves more than a collection of eye-catching installations and dramatic murals however. Thrown into the mix are an enticing blend of exhibitions, films, concerts, workshops and debates.

    Art Naif Festival

    10 June – 19 August 2016
    Website

    Venue: Various venues.

    Dedicated to ‘naïve’ art (often considered a childlike way of depicting reality), this festival recognises the work of Upper Silesia’s own naïve artists, a group of miners who painted in their spare time in the 1930s. Each year, the festival also features works from another country or region.

    OFF Festival

    5 – 7 August 2016
    Website

    Venue: Dolina Trzech Stawow (Three Ponds Valley).

    Alternative music fans flock to this über-cool festival, where mainstream tunes are eschewed in favour of breakthrough acts and edgy performances. That’s not to say well-known artists don’t appear – they do, but they’re more likely to try out their latest, boundary-pushing material than play the big hits.

    Tauron Nowa Muzyka Festival (Tauron New Music Festival)

    18 – 21 August 2016
    Website

    Venue: Nowe Muzeum Śląskie.

    Held on the site of a former coal mine, this hip music festival has gone from strength to strength since its inception in 2006. Hosting the likes of Kelis, Neneh Cherry, DJ Krush and Jamie Liddell, it aims to bring fresh music to Polish audiences.

    International Student Folklore Festival

    20 – 28 August 2016
    Website

    Venue: Various venues in Katowice and other nearby towns.

    Colourful street processions, open-air folk concerts and energetic dances are the order of the day at this student-led festival, which sees teams from around the world presenting a vibrant programme of cultural performances. Troupes are proudly dressed in traditional costume from their native lands.

    Ars Independent Film Festival

    27 September – 2 October 2016
    Website

    Venue: Various venues.

    New filmmakers compete to win a Black Horse trophy in this indie film festival, which awards prizes to first- or second-time directors for the best feature-length and animated movies. Beyond the competition, the festival celebrates independent video games and screens the year’s best music documentaries.

    Rawa Blues Festival

    30 September – 1 October 2016
    Website

    Venue: Spodek Hall

    Claiming to be the world’s largest indoor blues festival, Rawa Blues has had audiences tapping their toes for over three decades. Not only has it featured just about any renowned Polish blues artist going, but it has also hosted award-winning musicians from the USA, Australia and across Europe.

    Ars Cameralis

    8 – 28 November 2016
    Website

    Venue: Various Venues

    Taking place over two weeks each autumn, Ars Cameralis embraces art, music, literature and film in its extensive programme. A thrilling line-up featuring local and international artists encompasses everything from jazz concerts and poetry readings to avant-garde film screenings and thought-provoking contemporary art exhibitions.

    Silesian Jazz Festival

    9 – 11 Dezember 2016
    Website

    Venue: Akademia Muzyczna and Centrum Kultury Katowice

    This terrific jazz festival attracts international soloists and ensembles performing high-quality jazz. Students have the chance to polish their skills at special workshops and there’s a competition for jazz composers, with the finalists’ works performed to audiences during the festival.

    All information subject to change. Please check the dates on the relevant event organizer’s website.

    Enjoy

    Hotels in Katowice

    ListMap

    Finding a good-value room in Katowice should not be a struggle. The city is blessed with plenty of excellent affordable and mid-range options to make your stay pleasant and comfortable.

    High-end luxury is a little harder to come by however.

    Monopol

    ul. Dworcowa 5
    40-012 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Category: Expensive

    This 5-star art deco gem has plenty to savour, with large, well-heeled rooms, a sauna and top-notch restaurants.

    Novotel Katowice Centrum

    Al. Rozdzienskiego 16
    40 202 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    The Katowice branch of Novotel offers high-end rooms at extremely good prices.

    Hotel Olympia Spodek

    aleja Korfantego 35
    40-005 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    Stay right by the vast ‘saucer’ that is Katowice’s most eye-catching attraction, in excellent rooms at competitive rates.

    angelo Hotel Katowice

    Sokolska 24
    40-086 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    A modern business hotel right in the heart of the action, with unique décor and a highly rated breakfast to boot.

    Załęże

    Ulica Gliwicka 106
    40856 Katowice
    Poland
    Show on map

    Category: Cheap

    A smart and simple hotel with cosy rooms and an excellent Polish breakfast.

    Good to know

    Best time to visit

    Today: Monday, 05.12.2016 17:00 UTC

    sunny

    temperature


    -1°C


    wind direction

    southwest

    wind speed

    7.5 mph

    humidity

    68%

    7 days forecast

    Tuesday

    06.12.2016

    -1°C / -5°C

    Wednesday

    07.12.2016

    1°C / -4°C

    Thursday

    08.12.2016

    4°C / -3°C

    Friday

    09.12.2016

    6°C /

    Saturday

    10.12.2016

    7°C / 2°C

    Sunday

    11.12.2016

    7°C / 2°C

    Monday

    12.12.2016

    4°C / 2°C

    Climate & best time to visit Poland

    Poland’s climate is temperate with warm (often very hot) summers, crisp, sunny autumns and cold winters. Snow covers the mountainous area in the south of Poland (mid-December to April). Rain falls throughout the year. The most pleasant times to visit Poland are late spring and early summer (mid-May-June) and late summer and early autumn (September and October), when it’s still warm but unlikely to be too hot and the crowds of tourists have either not arrived yet or already gone home.

    The added advantages are that you’ll hit the asparagus season in late season and hiking is at its best in early autumn.

    Good to know

    Phone calls & Internet

    Telephone/Mobile Telephone

    Dialing Code: +48

    Telephone

    You can buy telephone cards from post offices, newspaper kiosks and hotel receptions for both domestic and international calls.

    Mobile Telephone

    Roaming agreements exist with most international mobile phone companies; most of the country is covered. You can buy local SIM cards once in Poland and use them in unlocked GSM handsets, with top-ups available at phone shops, newspaper kiosks and some ATMs.

    Internet

    There are many internet cafés in cities and Wi-Fi is available in hotels, hostels and cafés and plenty of other public spaces.

    Enjoy

    Shopping in Katowice

    Stadtführer, Lufthansa, Travelguide, Shopping, Einkaufen

    Key Areas

    Shopping in Katowice is not quite as bustling as larger cities in Poland. As such, you can find fashion outlets near the main railway station, and the odd impressive independent store. For a true blowout, you need to head to the massive Silesia City Center complex on the edge of town.

    Markets

    Targowisko Miejskie is an old-style Polish market selling fresh produce. It’s worth heading here to mingle with the locals. The market is located south of the main railway line in the city centre. The clothing market on Ulica Mickiewicza is also a good place to trawl for bargains.

    Shopping Centres

    Silesia City Center (Chorzowska 107) is where it’s at if you want to spend a whole day flexing your credit card. It sits on a former coal mine, with more than 200 shops and other attractions including a fitness centre and cinema. You can find the world’s biggest brand names here as well as luxury goods.

    Good to know

    Traveller etiquette

    Social Conventions

    Poles are friendly, industrious people and foreigners are usually made very welcome. There are vast contrasts between urban and rural life and the Polish peasantry is very religious and conservative, maintaining a traditional lifestyle. Roman Catholicism plays an important role in daily life and criticism or jokes about religion are not appreciated, despite the general good humour of the people.

    Shaking hands is the normal form of greeting; an older man will often kiss a woman’s hand.

    Normal courtesies are observed when visiting private homes, and it is customary to bring flowers, preferably in odd numbers. Fairly conservative casual wear is the most suitable attire, but dress should be formal when specified for entertaining in the evening or in a smart restaurant. Smoking is banned in public places, including railway stations, restaurants and bars.

    Photography

    Military installations including border points should not be photographed.

    Good to know

    Health

    Main emergency number: 112

    Food & Drink

    Mains water is normally chlorinated, and while relatively safe may cause mild abdominal upsets. Do not drink water from rivers or lakes even if they look pristinely clean as it may contain bacteria or viruses that can bring on diarrhoea and vomiting. Make use of the public wells for better tasting water; bottled water is available everywhere. Milk is pasteurised and dairy products are safe for consumption. Local meat, poultry, seafood, fruit and vegetables are generally considered safe to eat.

    Two words of caution – a lot of dishes in Polish cuisine are stuffed or wrapped. Avoid them at a cafeteria or buffet if they look like they have outlasted their shelf life. Also, Poles can be big drinkers and vodka is the national drink. You definitely won’t be able to keep up with your fellow drinkers for long. Go easy and either miss a few turns or sip your drink in stages. Otherwise count on the mother of all hangovers and an upset stomach the next day.

    Other Risks

    Vaccinations against tuberculosis and hepatitis B are sometimes recommended. Another one is against tick-borne encephalitis. This is spread by small insects that burrow under the skin and in recent years has become a common problem in parts of central and eastern Europe. Encephalitis is a serious infection of the brain, and vaccination is advised particularly for campers and hikers. Anyone who is considering spending a lot of time outdoors in affected areas should consider getting the jab before they leave home. Two inoculations of the vaccine will protect the recipient for a year while three doses provide protection for up to three years.

    Contractual physician of Lufthansa

    Dr. Straszak, Andrzej
    City Hospital
    Dep. Internal Medicine
    41-100 Siemianowice Sl.
    1 Maya 9
    Katowice
    Poland
    Tel. +48-32-228-3030
    Ext.286

    Please note that Lufthansa accepts no responsibility for the treatment nor will it bear the cost of any treatment.
    Good to know

    Visa & Immigration

    IATA Travel Centre

    The IATA Travel Centre delivers accurate passport, visa and health requirement information at a glance. It is a trusted, centralized source for the latest international travel requirements. The IATA Travel Centre is the most accurate source available because it is based on a comprehensive database used by virtually every airline, and information is gathered from official sources worldwide, such as immigration and police authorities.

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