Katowice

Katowice

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About Katowice

Full of character and truly authentic local cuisine

Katowice is a city founded on a rich living history and bursting with future potential. Once regarded as one of Poland’s industrial heartlands, Katowice is quickly shedding its old industrial reputation to warmly welcome visitors with an inviting centre of boutique stores and independent restaurants, full of character and truly authentic local cuisine.

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Katowice is certainly shedding a reputation for being an industrial heartland, but its hotel scene is still playing catch up in this regard. Top of the bunch is the city’s sole five-star offering, the Hotel Monopol (Dworcowa 5), which is equipped with walnut furniture, parquet flooring and individually styled rooms. The Olympia Spodek (Aleja Korfantego 35) is a more moderately priced option found behind the futuristic Spodek arena, while a good-value choice close to the tram is the modern Angelo Hotel (Sokolska 24). Elsewhere, the Best Western Premier (Bytkowska 1a) may be located a touch out of town, but the new hotel makes up for this thanks to its superb traditional restaurant.

There are plenty of malls to be found across Katowice, and one of the largest is Silesia City Centre (Chorzowska 107), boasting in excess of 300 shops, restaurants and bars, set on the site of an old coal mine. Altus (Uniwersyecka 13) is a skyscraper mall that offers a rooftop bar and cinema to complement the shopping experience. The district of Nikiszowiec is full of old red-brick mining charm, and a great place for art lovers to seek out thanks to the Syzb Wilson gallery (Oswobodzenia 1), which features work from young and emerging local artists. The foodies out there meanwhile should be alerted to Wawel (Warszawska 1), the famous chocolatier from Krakow that has an outpost in Katowice.

Polish cooking has a reputation for stodginess and overcooked cabbage, but this is often unfair and there is variety to be found in Katowice. Ambasador (Graniczna 54) is the place to head to for authentic local fare, with the pierogi (potato dumplings filled with pork and vegetables) an absolute must for any visitor. The borscht (beetroot soup) comes highly recommended at the more polished Restauracja Fantasmagoria (Gliwicka 51), while Restauracja Fanaberia (Dyrekcyjna 1) serves up Russian food in a stone cellar that offers plenty of atmosphere, and Hurry Curry (Stanislava 8) offers spicy curries and German beer. Head to candlelit bar Kredens (Stanisawa 5) for a few cheap beers to end the night in a quirky setting that features old-fashioned sewing machines for tables.

April

This celebration of street art sees the streets of Katowice burst into life every April with an array of colourful murals, captivating installations and intriguing graphic art.

Art Naif Festival

June-August

The Szyb Wilson Gallery holds this festival over two months each summer as more than 200 artists from across the globe showcase their work. The district of Nikiszowiec, where the old miners used to live, plays host to the event which allows you to watch the artists at work and check out live bands in the main square.

OFF Festival Katowice

August

The green expanse of Dolin Trzech Stawów plays host to this three-day event that is one of Poland’s most important music festivals, with everything from rock and indie to dance and electronica represented.

Rawa Blues Festival

October

The Spodek complex is the centre for most of the action at the largest blues festival in Poland, which has attracted international names such as Ruthie Foster, Otis Taylor and The Stone Foxes in the past.

Advent Fair

December

The district of Nikiszowiec runs an advent fair as the Christmas period sets in, with the pastries, cakes and decorations helping to raise money that is used towards the regeneration of the community.

Useful Information

Key facts

Language:Polish
Currency:Polish Zloty
Time zone:GMT +1 hour
Flight time:3 hours 30 mins
Airport code:KTW
Holiday type:Beach / City Break / Summer Sun

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