If you are in Poland and want to spend some time relaxing on a beach, then the most popular place is Sopot. A seaside town on the coast of the Baltic Sea, right next to Gdansk & Gdynia and part of the Tri-City area.
The beaches here are wide and sandy, and the bay is protected by the Hel Peninsula, which helps to keep the sea slightly warmer than other locations along the Polish coast. The town is full of history and Art Nouveau townhouses and villas. Sopot also boasts the longest wooden pier in Europe, which extends 511.5 metres out from the beach and into the Baltic Sea and is a great place to watch boats going by, or even sailing & windsurfing events.
Sopot has a wide range of accommodations to suit everyone, but one of the most prestigious hotels is the Sofitel Grand Hotel, which was built in the 1920’s and has recently been refurbished. It has a very classical feel to it and really does feel like a special place when you are walking up the impressive entrance.
It’s right on the beach and very close to the town centre. The rooms are very comfortable and there is even a room service menu for cats and dogs, just in case you decided to bring your fluffy friends with you!
The guestbook is somewhat questionable and I’m not sure that you would want to mention that you stayed in the same place as some of the previous guests, as they include Fidel Castro and several high ranking Nazi Party members, including Adolf Hitler. It has also played home to some slightly less questionable guests of course, including Charles de Gaulle, Marlena Dietrich, Greta Garbo and Annie Lennox. So it definitely has some history to it!
Also in Sopot is Krzywy Domek (crooked little house), and according the official website of this very random building, it was awarded the title of strangest building in the world! The building also includes a “Wall of Fame”, with signatures from various people who have visited. The building itself houses some cafes, shops, offices and a nightclub.
Sopot is about an 8-9 hour drive from Krakow right through the heart of the country. I’ve done it and it’s extremely tiring, the roads through the forests have a speed trap in almost every lay-by, one of which caught me but let me off with a warning as they didn’t speak English. You can also get a train from Krakow, which is about 6 hours travel time, or take a plane to Gdansk which is fastest and fairly cheap.
There are signs all along the beach advising of seals which also live along the beach, and if you take a walk early in the morning you may be lucky enough to see one. You could even be lucky and find a piece of amber washed up on the beach. Sopot is also well known for its amber and you will find it being sold everywhere.
It’s a beautiful seaside town and very relaxing to spend some time in. It can get busy in summer though, so it’s a good idea to plan your trip in advance!