The Perfect 1 to 2 Days in Wroclaw Itinerary

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by Michael Rozenblit

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Planning a Wroclaw itinerary isn’t necessarily something that is on everyone’s list when planning a trip to Poland. Often overshadowed by nearby Krakow, Wroclaw is a beautiful city in southwestern Poland that is very much worth adding onto your travel route.

Spending one or two days in Wroclaw is a great way to see more of this beautiful country away from the crowds of visitors that congregate in more popular cities.

Located in the Lower Silesia region in the southwest of the country, the city of Wroclaw is situated on a series of islands on the banks of the Oder River. Sometimes lauded as the “Venice of the North,” Wroclaw boasts a beautiful old town, plenty of incredible history but also retains a funky and youthful edge that gives this city its charm.

So if you want to get a bit off the beaten path in Poland and venture beyond Krakow and Warsaw, consider planning a trip to Wroclaw.

How Many Days in Wroclaw?

Before planning to visit, many potential travellers to this city wonder how many days to spend in Wroclaw in order to see the top sites and really do it justice. Fortunately, Wroclaw is quite a compact city and you can easily see the highlights within the confines of a single day.

With one day in Wroclaw, you will be able to explore the Old Town and visit all of the top historic sites – and even try to find as many gnomes as possible (more on that later)!

While seeing Wroclaw in a day can be a bit rushed if you want to see multiple angles of the city, it is enough to get a good taste of the city.

If you have 2 days to spend or are thinking of a weekend in Wroclaw, then all the better. With a second day in Wroclaw, you will have time to either venture out of the old town and take in some more alternative neighbourhoods of this Polish city or to head out on a day trip to a nearby area.

No matter how much time you have, you’re sure to fall hard for this beautiful little city.

Market Square in Wroclaw
Market Square in Wroclaw

Getting To & Around Wroclaw

Located in the southwest of Poland in the Lower Silesia region, Wroclaw is a major city in the country and is well-connected as such. If you’re travelling to Wroclaw from other Polish cities, you will find plenty of direct bus and train connections.

For instance, Wroclaw is located about 3 hours by direct train and bus from Krakow, with plenty of connections leaving each day. From Warsaw, expect trains and buses to take about 4-4.5 hours, with plenty of direct connections, as well.

If you’re coming from a neighbouring country, there are also plenty of options. Wroclaw is connected by bus from Berlin – expect journeys to take about 4.5 hours. Dresden is also relatively close, with bus journeys taking about 3.5 hours. You can also take a direct bus from Prague in about 5.5 hours. You can view bus schedules here.

Once in Wroclaw, you will find that it is incredibly easy to navigate the city on foot. In fact, the majority of the stops on the route below are all accessible as a pedestrian and it’s not generally necessary to use public transit.

That being said, Wroclaw does have a public transit system consisting of both buses and trams. Tickets are affordable and can be purchased from machines at bus and tram stops and on board the vehicles.

Gnome statue in Wroclaw
Gnome statue in Wroclaw

1 to 2-Day Wroclaw Itinerary

Day 1 – Explore Wroclaw’s Old Town

If you only have one day in Wroclaw, then make sure to spend it exploring the Old Town and historic centre of Wroclaw. All of the sites are within easy reach of each other and it’s simple to navigate on your own.

If you’re looking to explore with a bit more context, consider joining a free walking tour – this is where the tour itself is free and the guides work for tips, so ensure that you tip the guide what you believe the value of the tour was at the end. If this isn’t of interest, you can also book a paid walking tour of the Old Town with a knowledgeable local guide.

Market Square

Like most Central European cities, likely the best place to begin any day exploring Wroclaw is at the Market Square – the main square in the city. This lovely medieval square was once home to the main markets of the city and, to this day, it plays host to Wroclaw’s Christmas market in December.

Today, however, it is simply the main meeting point in the city. While at Market Square, you can take in the beautiful Gothic town hall – which now is home to an art museum – and see the monument to Alexander Fredro.

The square is a great place to take in some of the gorgeous architecture of the city, grab a coffee at one of the many outdoor cafes or simply sit on a bench and people-watch a bit. It’s an excellent starting point for any day spent getting to know Wroclaw.

Wroclaw Town Hall
Wroclaw Town Hall

Wroclaw’s Gnomes

While at the Market Square, this is also a good opportunity to get an introduction to Wroclaw’s smallest citizens – the hundreds of gnomes who call the city home! The city of Wroclaw is adorned with over 600 small dwarf statues and it’s something that the city has become known for.

The first gnome appeared in 2001 to commemorate an anti-communist movement. It has now become a tradition in Wroclaw and you will find countless cute gnome statues scattered all over the city. Some of the statues are more traditional in style, but some have a more modern take.

You can find maps outlining where to see the gnome statues at the tourist info centre. However, there is also a mobile app that you can download if you really want to take your gnome-hunting to the next level.

As you wander throughout the old town, keep an eye out for gnome statues – it’s a fun way to add an extra element to typical sightseeing!

St Elizabeth’s Church

From the market square, make your way past the iconic Hansel & Gretel houses (these are medieval houses that are charmingly joined by a bridge) and find St Elizabeth’s Church. This is one of the most iconic Roman Catholic churches in Wroclaw and a great place to visit.

The church itself is beautiful and worth a visit in its own right, but the main attraction is its bell tower. If you’re looking for incredible views over the city, then climbing to the tower’s observation deck is one of the best things to do in Wroclaw.

From the observation, you can get a panoramic view of Wroclaw and you can clearly see all of the little islands and bridges that make up the city. It’s truly a great place to see the city from a bird’s eye view. Note that there are several steep, winding steps up the tower and there is an entry fee for the privilege, as well.

St Elizabeth's Church
St Elizabeth’s Church

Jatki Street

From the church, make your way to one of the old town’s notable, historic streets: Jatki Street. Historically, this street was home to butchers and this is depicted by the sculpture of farm animals to be found here.

You will also notice a lot of art on this street and plenty of galleries and interesting places to browse for a unique souvenir from your time in Wroclaw.

Cathedral of St Vincent & St James

From Jatki Street, continue on exploring the Old Town and make your way past the University of Wroclaw before we make it to out next stop – another historic and interesting church, the Cathedral of St Vincent & St James. This is a Ukrainian Catholic Church and is an absolutely beautiful Gothic structure.

This structure was consecrated in 1240 and was completed in 1256. Today, it is of importance as being a place of worship for Ukrainian Catholics. Wroclaw has the highest population of Ukrainians in all of Poland, with an estimated 250,000 people calling the city home – over one-third of the city’s entire population.

Wroclaw Market Hall

After visiting the cathedral, it’s time to head to the adjacent Wroclaw Market Hall. This beautiful early 20th Century building is home to a great number of vendors selling local produce and plenty of other interesting products. This is a great place to pick up some snacks for a picnic in one of the city’s many parks.

Exploring the market is also a great way to learn a bit about the local food you will find in Wroclaw. While the city is young and hip with many cool, international eateries, it’s a great place to learn a bit about traditional Polish food, particularly if you don’t have time to join a food tour. It is more than just pierogi!

Cathedral Island

From the market, it’s time to venture away from the official Old Town to, paradoxically, explore the oldest part of Wroclaw – Cathedral Island. As mentioned, Wroclaw is made up of 21 islands and there are over 100 bridges within the confines of the city.

Cathedral Island is located across the Oder River from the Old Town and you can walk across the Wyspa Piasek island park and the charming Tumski Bridge to reach here. Though this isn’t an island anymore, it was at one point.

If you happen to be visiting in the evening, you can experience lamplighters come around and manually lights the traditional gas lamps in the area – this is one of the few places in Europe that still holds to this practice. Otherwise, Cathedral Island is filled with peaceful cobbled streets and historic buildings.

As the name would suggest, it’s also home to the main cathedral in Wroclaw – the Cathedral of St John the Baptist. This beautiful Gothic cathedral was originally built in the 13th Century, however, after it was destroyed during WWII, it was reconstructed in the 1950s.

Bridge to Cathedral Island
Bridge to Cathedral Island

Promenada Staromiejska

After exploring Cathedral Island, mosy your way back to the old town and enjoy a nice, leisurely stroll through some of the Old Town’s most beautiful parks. If you want to experience some history along with enjoying a park, then head to the Promenada Staromiejska – or the Old Town Promenade.

This city park is located alongside the old moat for the city of Wroclaw, which was diverted from the Oder River to protect the city in medieval times. It’s a delightful green space to spend some time in and a great way to unwind after a busy day of sightseeing.

Plac Solny

End your day’s tour of the Old Town of Wroclaw close to where we started in the lovely Plac Solny. This smaller square is adjacent to the Market Square and it is the perfect place to kick back and people-watch a little bit as evening sets in.

Plan to spend your evening eating at one of many of the great restaurants Wroclaw calls home. Whether you’re looking to eat hearty Polish fare at a traditional milk bar or are keen for cuisines ranging from Georgian to Japanese, you will find it here.

There is also a number of different bars to enjoy if you fancy a night out. Wroclaw has a young population and it’s a great city to experience some nightlife in if that’s the vibe you’re after!

Day 2 – Explore Nadodrze or Take a Day Trip

If you’re fortunate enough to be seeing Wroclaw in 2 days, you have a few options available to you. If you’d rather stay in the city, this can be a great opportunity to explore some areas outside of the old town and to get a holistic view of the city.

Otherwise, Wroclaw makes for a great base for exploring some interesting areas in the vicinity for those who are keen to take a day trip.

Railway station in Nadodrze
Railway station in Nadodrze

Nadodrze Neighbourhood

If you’ve decided to stay within the city limits for day 2, then take the time to explore the hip Nadoodrze neighbourhood. Located just across the Oder from the old town, this is a hip and gentrified area of Wroclaw that is super cool to wander around.

Not only are there plenty of hip bars, cafes and restaurants, it’s perfect for art lovers. There is lots of street art (you can take a tour if you want to learn more) to see around here and the vibe is completely different from what you will get in the Old Town, despite the fact that nothing is that far away.

After exploring this neighbourhood, you can also take the time to visit some museums you wouldn’t have had the time to yesterday. For instance, you can visit the Panorama of the Battle of Racławice. This museum includes a 360-degree mural depicting a 1794 battle. Or, if you want to learn more about Wroclaw itself, visit the City Museum of Wroclaw, also located in the Old Town.

And if you’re interested in architecture, you could opt to hop on a tram or bus to take in Centennial Hall, which is a historic concert hall a bit outside the historic centre.

Day Trip to Poznan, Lower Silesia or Auschwitz-Birkenau

Another great option for a second day is to take a day trip. There are plenty of great places to visit with easy reach of Wroclaw so it really depends on what you’re after.

If you’re after a similar vibe to Wroclaw and want to explore another beautiful Polish city, then consider heading to Poznan. Located about 1.5 hours north of Wroclaw by train, Poznan is a compact little city with a lot to offer visitors and it’s a joy to explore.

Those who are able to hire a car (or who want to get on an organised tour) may enjoy exploring more of the Lower Silesia region. Wroclaw is the capital of Lower Silesia, but there are plenty of other places to explore that range from charming little villages to beautiful, historic castles.

If you choose to do this independently, this area is best explored in your own vehicle as there are numerous places you could stop off at – including the Ksiaz Castle and the village of Swidnica.

A sobering place to visit within close proximity of Wroclaw is the Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration Camp. Though this is closer to Krakow, it is still doable as a day trip from Wroclaw, provided you choose to book a day tour or drive yourself. It’s difficult to navigate here using public transport only.

Old Marketplace Square in Poznan
Old Marketplace Square in Poznan

Where to Stay in Wroclaw

Europeum Hotel – Located in Wroclaw’s old town, this hip hotel is perfect for mid-range visitors to this cool Polish city. They have a range of bright, modern and comfortable rooms to choose from along with breakfast and other great amenities available to guests. Click here to check availability

PURO Wrocław Stare Miasto  This boutique hotel is located right in the centre of Wroclaw, has modern and clean rooms and a funky interior. They have a number of great amenities for guests to enjoy along with a fab breakfast and an on-site restaurant and bar. Click here to check availability

Grampa’s Hostel  – This is one of the best places to stay in Wroclaw if you’re looking for budget accommodation as they offer both dorms and private rooms, have good common areas and organise a number of social events if you want to meet other travellers. It is also well-located, clean and has great facilities. Click here to check availability

Not quite what you’re looking for? Click here to browse more Wroclaw hotels!

Visiting Wroclaw is an excellent option if you want to venture a bit further into Poland and see another charming and historic city. With a fun, youthful energy and plenty of great things to do, you’re sure to quickly fall in love with this lovely city.

Are you planning to visit Wroclaw? Have any questions about this itinerary? Let us know in the comments!

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Michael is a co-founder and writer for The World Was Here First. Both solo and with his partner, Maggie, he has travelled to over 50 countries across the globe and has a particular affinity for the Balkans and Eastern Europe. He’s lived in numerous countries worldwide but currently resides in his hometown of Melbourne, Australia. Read more about Michael


  1. This was one of my favourite cities in Poland and also the favourite city of my guide. Especially good if you are able to stay close to the city square. Thanks for sharing this info so others can experience what Wroclaw has to offer.

  2. Wroclaw has some interesting viewpoints. I especially recommend the Witches’ Bridge. Beautiful panorama and interesting history.


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