Poland is situated almost directly in the geographic center of Europe. Its territory of 312.883 sq. km. (120.725 sq. miles) makes it the biggest state in Central Europe. The country borders Germany to the west, the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south, the Russia (the Kalinigrade enclave), the Belarus, the Ukraine and Lithuania to the east and the Baltic sea to the north. Poland is predominantly quite a flat country with wide sandy beaches at the seaside, lots of crystal clear lakes and wild forests in the north. The center of the country is covered by a huge plateau and the south is bordered by a few mountain ranges with the highest – the Tatras (Rysy 2.499 meters above the sea level).
Poland lies in the moderate climate zone, intermediate between marine and continental climates. Polish summer starts in May, and offers lots of sunny days till the end of September. Average temperature (Celsius degrees) January -2, February 0, March 5, April 11, May 19, June 21, July 25, August 23, September 21, October 17, November 6, December 2.
The population of the country is 38,7 million. Almost 2 million live in Warsaw – the capital. Poland is almost ethnically homogeneous – less than 3 % of the population are national minorities: Ukrainians, Belorussians and Germans. RELIGIONS More than 90% are Roman Catholic. Among minorities we may find: Orthodox, Protestant, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim and others.
The entire Polish territory lies one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.
Poland’s power grid supplies 220 V/50 HZ current; since round, European-style two-pin plugs are used, 110 V/60 HZ electrical equipment requires an adapter.
CURRENCY AND MONEY EXCHANGE
The official Polish currency unit is “zloty", abbreviated “zl". In circlation are following notes: 200, 100, 50, 20, 10; and coins: 5,2,1 “zloty” , 50, 20, 10, 5, 2, 1 “groszy". Convertible currencies may be changed into Polish zlotys at banks, hotels and at private currency-exchange offices – the “kantors". Major travellers checks are easily changed and all major credit cards are accepted.
Travel documents: holders of most European or American valid passports do not require a visa to enter Poland. However, other travelers must obtain appropriate visa documentation from the nearest Polish Consulate before departure.
Direct connections with almost all countries. The dialing code to Poland is ++48, Warsaw ++4822, Cracow ++4812, Gdansk ++4858.
SHOPPING AND DINING
Poles are known for their hospitality and love of food. The Polish kitchen is known for its delicious soups and unusual desserts and sweets. In the summer, taste our delectable strawberries and cherries. At the same time, almost all cuisines from all over the world are available in Poland. Poland is fast becoming a shopper’s paradise. The most popular souvenir is amber from the Baltic Sea. Each individual piece can be fashioned into a pendant, ring, bracelet, or earrings. Poland is also known for its silver jewelry. Small family-owned galleries sell handmade crafts and pottery as well as glassware and carved figurines.
Private travel insurance is recommended to order at your own at insurance office before travelling to Poland.