Edinburgh to Gdansk: A long weekend in Poland

One of The Edinburgh Blogs guest contributors recently went on a long weekend break with a group of friends. Their criteria was to fly direct from Edinburgh to a European destination that would provide good nightlife and good food at a very affordable price; but to try and avoid European hotspots that have become a mecca for British tourists, especially the stag and hen weekends. Gdansk in Poland was chosen as the destination. With Polands entry to the EU and the arrival of Polish workers into the UK, affordable air travel between Edinburgh and Poland is now possible. For this trip the flights came from Centralwings. Here’s the write-up:

Centralwings punctuality on the outward and inward bound journeys was excellent, and their planes were relatively spacious e.g. more so than Ryanair. The passengers on board were all Polish apart from the party I was with. Thankfully English translations are given on board after the Polish equivalent.

Centre of Gdansk, Poland

The airport is around 8km from central Gdansk and the taxi costs around 50 Zloty (just under ¬£10); we tried negotiating but the driver didn’t budge. Gdansk itself is a historic place town, but has plenty of restaurants and bars. While there we didn’t see many other British tourists; the only others were German. However, given these affordable flights and write ups in several newspapers this may change, which could be for the worse given its unspoilt nature at the time of our visit. Nightclubs were open until 6am at the weekend and 3am midweek: cheap beer and student venues dominate this aspect of town.

Sopot
is 20 minutes and a 50p journey on the train out of Gdansk. It’s definitely worth the visit and has a nice beach with many bars. Unfortunately there was significant broken glass on the beach and seemingly no-one monitoring/cleaning this up. Some beach sports, such as volleyball, were being played on the safe areas of the beach though.

Beach at Sopot, Poland

In Gdansk and Sopot it was easily warm enough to sit outside at the many restaurants and there is always pleasant table service. On Friday night we ate at a very decent restaurant (sorry - can’t remember the name), that had a pianist, and the bill still only came to around ¬£8 each. Typically beer would cost 5 or 6 Zloty for a half litre, that I think works out around ¬£1/¬£1.20. So terrific value all round in the drinking and dining.

We stayed at the Gdansk hostel, sharing a dorm for 15 people, that worked out around ¬£7 each per night. It was boiled eggs for breakfast. Internet access was also provided and the hostel had no curfew, although they didn’t have enough keys for everyone in the room, so we had to wake some poor Welsh chap up at 5.30 one morning.

In summary, Gdansk is highly recommended for a long weekend break with friends and most locals were friendly. Although in some bars and clubs there were some hints of trouble from the towns youth - so always keep alert and aware of your surroundings.

Centralwings seem to fly out of Edinburgh on Mondays, Wednesdays or Fridays and back to Edinburgh on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. Booking far in advance, as ever, will get you the best deals. A fixed passenger fee of £19.89 seems to be added with each flight you take on Centralwings so an outward flight at 16:35 on Wednesday July 26th 2006 would cost you a total of £39.78. However, a return on the Sunday leaving Gdansk at 6.25am would cost £79.78.

Centralwings also fly direct from Edinburgh to Warsaw and Katowice.

One Response to “Edinburgh to Gdansk: A long weekend in Poland”

  1. how long does the beaches stretch for?

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