So, you’ve just got one day in Poznań, and you want to know EXACTLY how to spend it? Well, you’ve come to the right place! I’ve just recently spent 4 days in Poznań and I totally love this vibrant city. The city of Poznań itself is extremely accessible – the old town is very walkable and Ubers to destinations such as the Zoo, Palm House and airport are very cheap. Although I’d recommend spending a few days in Poznań if you can, to appreciate the museums and enjoy the vibe of the city, it is possible to spend just one day in Poznań and see the main highlights. But first, how to get there and away…
What is the best time to visit Poznań?
Poznań is gorgeous all year round, but it can get very cold during the winter time. If you’re a bit of a wimp like me about cold weather, I would avoid Poznań from November through to February (temperatures can be as low as -4 °C). Only visit in winter if you have a particular desire to see Poznań at Christmas, and then make sure that you wrap up! It starts to pick up again in March during the spring.
August can sometimes be too hot – it exceeded 30 degrees Celsius at times this summer. Sun hats, sun cream and avoiding the midday sun were necessary. However, summer is a beautiful time to sit out in the Polish cafes on market square.
Overall, the best times to visit are June to July and September time.
An important thing to note is that they are currently replacing the utility cables and the cobble stones on Stary Rynek (Old Town Market Square). It’s hard to see the buildings and it is pretty messy, so it’s a good idea to wait until this finishes. They originally said it would be completed by the end of 2023, but that now doesn’t seem likely. If historical buildings are the main reason that you are spending one day in Poznań, then ideally wait until the end of 2024 or start of 2025 to be sure!
Getting there and getting around
There are many options for getting to Poznań, it’s a very accessible city by both land and air. Here are the best methods of travel that people use to get to Poznań…
- Poznań–Ławica Airport – Just 15-20 minutes away from central Poznań and only around £7 in an Uber. Poznan airport has direct flights to Liverpool and Manchester (with Ryanair)
- Train from Berlin to Poznań – Most people who are travelling across Europe take the Berlin to Poznań train from Germany to Poland.
- Flixbus – For getting between Polish cities such as Poznań to Lodz or Poznań to Wroclaw, many travellers use Flixbus. You can book your tickets online here.
- Uber – Ubers are really cheap in Poznań and I used them to get from different parts of the city to speed up my sightseeing (eg. Park Cytadela to Stary Rynek).
- Bolt – The electric scooters are very popular in Poznań and you can download the BOLT app if you want to use them. Poznan is relatively flat with good roads and pavements, so the scooter is a great option.
- Explore on foot – Poznań is a very walkable city and if you are OK getting a few steps in, then you will easily get around Park Cytadela, Cathedral Island and the central Old Town on foot.
If you have just one day in Poznań, I would recommend that you stay overnight the night before and the night after, so that you can make the most of Poznań’s sights as well as the fabulous restaurant scene and nightlife.
A few words of advice about visiting Poznań
My top tips for visiting Poznań….
- Spend at least 3-4 days in Poznań if you can, but it is possible to spend just one day in Poznań and see the main sights.
- Ubers are cheap in Poznań and your UK account will work there and show you the price in Zlotys and pounds.
- Most locals speak English so you shouldn’t worry about communication issues.
- Make sure that you are outside the town hall for the bugle player and the display of the Poznań mechanical goats!
What to Pack for one day in Poznań
What to pack for Poznań depends a lot on the season that you are travelling in. For the summer you want comfortable shorts, sun hat, sun cream and plenty of water. For the winter months you want a fleece, big coat, thick socks and snow boots! Here are some other things that I would recommend you pack for Poznań…
- Your UK debit or credit card (my Barclaycard and American Express both worked everywhere in Poland).
- Some small change in Polish Zlotys for the markets and tips.
- A sturdy pair of walking boots that are waterproof work well in Poland all year round.
- Plenty of comfortable clothes that you can layer – leggings, cycling shorts, jeans, T-shirts, fleece.
- An electric plug converter for Poland – I’d recommend this one which has a couple of USB charging ports.
- The Lonely Planet Poland – it’s got plenty of tips on where to stay and where to eat. I also like to have something physical rather than digital to read on buses and in cafes.
- Ski socks – especially if you are visiting Poznan in the winter!
What to Avoid in Poznań
- Don’t have your hands in your pockets while talking to people on the street or in public places, it’s considered to be rude.
- Avoid going into Churches at Mass times.
- Avoid dressing inappropriately to visit Churches and the Cathedral (cover your legs, shoulders and cleavage).
- Don’t try to keep up with the Polish on the Vodka drinking….you may not even make it home!
- Don’t get drunk and walk alone at night – there are not many scammers or pickpockets in Poznan, but this will make you a target.
- Don’t go out in the midday sun in summer – it can cause heat exhaustion or heatstroke.
- Do NOT attempt to take selfies with the tanks and guns at the Artillery Museum and do not attempt to sit on the tanks (it is not allowed and can damage the exhibitions).
- Don’t turn up late in Poland, it is a sign of bad manners.
- Don’t smoke in non-designated areas.
How to spend one day in Poznań
So, how exactly do you spend a day in Poznań? Well first of all, I’d like to warn you that this itinerary is….INTENSE!
Be prepared to be doing a lot of walking and to be on your feet pretty much all day, we’re talking over 20,000 steps on your Fitbit! If you think this may be too excessive for you, scale it down maybe by missing out Park Cytadela.
7.30am Breakfast at Cafe Pomarańczarnia
It’s a good idea to eat a nice big Polish breakfast to start your day. I highly recommend breakfast at Cafe Pomarańczarnia near Blooms Boutique hostel. They do a buffet style Polish breakfast with salads and sausage. Eat your fill and then jump in an Uber to Park Cytadela by around 8.30am!
8.30am Park Cytadela
Enter Park Cytadela at the main entrance where you will see the war graves. Take at least an hour or two exploring this beautiful park. There are several landmarks to note including the Monument to the Heroes, the Liberty Bell and several statues and sculptures.
If you are interested in World War history, then don’t miss the Artillery Museum. It has an extensive collection of guns, bombs, army uniforms and documents from the USSR and WW2. There is an open air display of tanks and fighter jets, along with some vehicles used as mobile hospitals during the war.
11.30am Stary Rynek
You need to time your arrival at Stary Rynek market square for around 11.45am to set up a comfortable viewing spot for the display of the Poznań mechanical goats! This is one of the most popular things to do in Poznań. The goats will come out of the middle tower of the City Hall and butt heads to the tune of a bugle playing (the bugle guy usually gets a round of applause after his performance and waves at everyone down below!) Also on market square, look out for the statues of Neptune and Apollo.
If you arrive early and you’re feeling peckish then pop to cafe Rozove for some pink cake! Then you will probably want to explore the area around the historical centre and take some photos of the architecture and colourful houses. A few other things to look for as you walk around the Old Town include the Parish Church of St. Stanislaus or Fara Church (free to enter and has a beautiful ceiling), the old ‘weighing house’ and also the former Jesuits college.
1pm Archaeology Museum
While you are in the Old Town, visit the Archaeology Museum of Poznań. This will take you around one hour to see everything, but you need to be quick about it! There is also an audio guide available if you would like to find out more information about the exhibits in English. In the courtyard, you will be greeted by the only Egyptian Obelisk in Poland – the Obelisk of Rameses II. Upstairs you will find exhibitions on Poland’s Middle Ages, Ancient Egypt and Sudan.
2pm Lunch at Brovaria
You will have worked up an appetite by this time (if not before!) so now, it’s time to enjoy a leisurely lunch on the Old Town Market Square, with a lovely view of the colourful buildings. If you have a big appetite, I recommend the ‘Golonka’ which is a pork knuckle served with either mustard or horseradish. They also do a nice ‘trio of beers’ if you fancy a selection of local beer to try. I would most certainly recommend it!
At around 3pm it’s time to jump in an Uber to Ostrow Tumski in search of Poland’s oldest Cathedral. It is possible to walk to the Cathedral in about 20 minutes from Stary Rynek, but I would recommend saving your legs and your time if you are against the clock!
3.30pm Cathedral Island
Now it’s time to walk across to Cathedral Island to learn about the history of Roman Catholicism in Poznań going right back to the 10th Century. You might not have time to spend exploring the exhibition in Brama Poznania if you are spending just one day in Poznan, but you will have time to see the Cathedral with the adjacent chapels and the Archbishops Palace. Make sure that you go into the Cathedral and have a look at the golden carved altar.
Great, because it’s time to head over the Jordan Bridge to the Srodka district. It’s just a short walk over the bridge with the red rails (this makes quite a nice photo when you look back across the bridge towards the Cathedral). Srodka is a bohemian district with cute cafes and some famous Street Art. Keep walking until you see the 3D effect mural called a ‘Srodka Tale’.
6pm Pierogi – Polish Dumplings
By now, you will probably be getting peckish, and you can’t leave Poznań without trying some of their fabulous dumplings. You’ve got two choices, you could get some dumplings in the Srodka district, or jump in an Uber to my favourite place for dumplings in Poznań – Pierożak Pierogarnia Półwiejska.
They will ask if you would like them with butter and onions – I recommend that you do – this is the way that the Polish eat them and they taste gorgeous. My favourite flavour of Polish dumplings are goats cheese and the duck ones. But you can also get sweet ones such as mango dumplings! At just 3 Zloty per dumpling, you can’t go wrong! Order 3-5 dumplings per person for a meal or just 1-2 per person for a snack.
Of course you can’t go out drinking on an empty stomach haha! Take an hour to recharge your batteries or get a change of clothes at this point – it’s been a long day!
8.30pm Pub Pomidor
So, it’s time to start exploring the Polish nightlife. My first recommendation is Pub Pomidor, which is a bit of an alternative pub down into a basement. They have a variety of Polish beers and vodkas, including my favourite – the flavoured Soplica! I recommend the cherry Soplica (vodka) and you can do it as a shot, but also it’s very tasty and nice to sip (savour the flavour!)
10.30pm Kunzia Rock Pub
Now, if you’re up for more of a party atmosphere and not exhausted by all that sightseeing, head to Kunzia Rock Pub for some hardcore karaoke! They have many songs to choose from to sing in Polish and English (the Polish sing in both!) Don’t worry, you don’t have to have a go on the mic, although it’s fun if you do – everyone will join in with you, so no need to be self conscious, just enjoy yourself! Kunzia is full of great people and has a brilliant atmosphere. It’s a great place to spend your last few hours in Poznań!
Additional Activities in Poznań
If you have any extra time you could add on a few of these additional activities, or swap the above itinerary around slightly to suit your interests…
- Poznań Museum
- Poznań Zoo
- Poznań Palm House
Where to stay in Poznań – hotels and hostels
Poznań has some great value accommodation, and there is something to be found for every budget. There is a good backpacker scene in Poznań with lots of travellers coming into Poland via Berlin, so there is a good selection of backpacker hostels if you don’t mind sharing a dorm or other facilities.
Further Reading on Poland
If you enjoyed this article, you might also like to read:
- Is Poznań worth visiting?
- Is Poland worth visiting?
- Best things to do in Poznań
- My 7 best cities in Poland
- Solo Female Travel Poland