May 2021 in Warsaw: ideas and tips for making the most of your spring in Warsaw

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Vistula river cruises & kayaking in the Warsaw area

Please note that due to weather conditions or the high water level in the Vistula river, some cruises can be temporarily suspended. It’s recommended to check the Facebook page of a cruise provider before heading out.

Free ferries across the Vistula river
Starting from May 1 until September 26, 2021, there are 3 free ferries:  Cypel Czerniakowski – Saska Kępa, Most Poniatowskiego – Stadion Narodowy, Podzamcze-Fontanny – ZOO. From May 1 to June 30, ferries run on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays (additionally on weekdays on June 1 and 4). From July 1 to August 31, ferries run daily, and in September only at weekends. More in English (including a map, timetable).

Cruises on the Vistula river
Daylight and evening one-hour / 9 km cruises on the boats (glass-covered main deck and sun deck). The lower deck is completely built-up (with huge windows) and safe for little children. Regular ticket: 49 PLN, reduced ticket for children up to 15: 24 PLN (daily cruise), evening cruise – 45 PLN (online tickets). Start and finish at the Vistula Boulevard, close to the Old Town (location on the map). In May and June, sightseeing cruises are organised on weekends and in selected days during the week (depending on weather and relevant demand). You can also arrange a private cruise. Website in English. Facebook page.

Ferry across the Vistula river near Konstancin (transport of people, bicycles, cars)
Prom Gassy-Karczew connects the municipality of Konstancin-Jeziorna and the municipality of Karczew (the route on Google map). On weekdays the ferry operates from 6 am to 8 pm, on Saturdays – from 8 am to 8 pm, on Sundays and holidays – 9 am – 8 pm. The cost is 3 PLN per person (children up to 7 free). Additionally, bicycle – 2 PLN, motorcycle – 5 PLN, car – 9 PLN. Cash only. Website in Polish. Facebook pageThe ferry has been operating since April 29.

Gondola, rental of canoes and wooden boats in Park of the King Jan III’s Palace in Wilanów (Wilanowskie Lake)
Location: the park of Wilanów Palace, Stanisława Kostki Potockiego 10/16 Street (first you need to buy an entrance ticket to the park). Opening hours: 10 am – 9 pm. The rental is located next to Pompownia building in the park – a pumping station at the Jezioro Wilanowskie Lake. There are available life vests, wooden boats (for 4 adults or 2 adults and 3 children; 30 min – 40 PLN, 1 hour 60 PLN, 2 hours 100 PLN) and kayaks (for 2 adults with an additional child seat; 30 min – 20 PLN, 1 hour – 30 PLN, 2 hours – 50 PLN). Gondola rides every hour. You can pay with a card. Facebook page.

Taxi Wisła – the Vistula river cruises on a traditional wooden boat
“Taxi Wisła” offers (from May till October) one-hour cruises, crossings to the other side of the Vistula, and further trips. To order/book Taxi Wisła call them (+48 605143904) or send a message on Facebook. There is always a set of life vests on board, you don’t need to have your own. Website in Polish.

Kayak rental in Park Skaryszewski (from May 15)
Location: Park Skaryszewski, Aleja Zieleniecka 2 Street (Praga). The Skaryszewski Park -one of the largest parks in Warsaw – is located in Praga district. You will find there a Kamionkowskie Lake which used to be a part of Vistula river (today’s area of Skaryszewski Park and Saska Kępa used to be an island, and then a peninsula). The Lake is located within the Skaryszewski Park, swimming in the lake not allowed. Kayak rentals are available at the restaurant on the lakeside called “Przystań”. Life jackets for kids are available. Website in PolishFacebook page. Our tips in English about the Skaryszewski Park.

Kayak and canoe rental – kayaking trips along the Vistula River
Various routes are available – different in terms of the length of the trip (from 1,5-hour trip to weekend trips). The most popular 1,5-hour trip (10 km) along the Vistula river starts at Plaża Romantyczna (“Romantyczna Beach”) in Wawer and finishes in the area of Saska Kępa (location on the map). 2-person kayak: 90 PLN. Life vests are available for adults and children. Website in PolishFacebook page.

Kayak rental – kayaking trips along the Vistula River
Various routes are available – different in terms of the length of the trip. The most popular 2-hour trip (11 km) along the Vistula river (“Wawer-Śromieście”) starts near Plaża Romantyczna (“Romantyczna Beach”), Rychnowska Street and finishes in the area of Saska Kępa, Wał Miedzeszyński 399 Street (locations on the maps). 2-person kayak: 90 PLN, 1-person kayak 65 PLN. Life vests are available for adults and children. Online schedule and bookingWebsite in EnglishFacebook page.

Kayak rental – kayaking trips along the Świder River
Świder is a picturesque winding river near Warsaw, it flows into the Vistula River on the border of Józefów and Otwock. Various routes are available – different in terms of the length of the trip (from 2-hour trip to weekend trips). 2-person kayak: 80 PLN. Life vests are available for adults and children. Kayak rental is called “Przystań Emów”, contact them to book a kayak: + 48 607 582 757, przystan@emow.plWebsite in PolishFacebook page.

What to do in Warsaw in the open air on the weekend: Horse Racing at Tor Służewiec Racetrack

Are you looking for an idea of how to spend an interesting weekend in Warsaw outdoors? One of the ideas for spring and summer is Saturday or Sunday spent among beautiful nature, horses and jockeys.

The Służewiec Horse Racetrack is not only a horse race but also an important monument in Warsaw – the track was opened in June 1939, at that time it was the most modern and largest horse racing track in Europe.
Of course, you don’t have to play sports betting if you don’t want to. It’s fun to watch the horses (sometimes you can even get up close), the children can play on the playground, you can eat something, and the race area itself is a huge green space!
It is also worth paying attention to the kilometer-long wall separating the area of the Racing Track from Puławska Street, which has become a street gallery of Polish graffiti artists.

  • Horse racing in Warsaw takes place almost every weekend, from May to mid-NovemberRace weekend calendar.
  • How to get there? The racecourse is located in Ursynów (Puławska 266 Street, location on Google map). The easiest way to get there is by car, through the main gate at Puławska Street, where there is a large parking lot. You can also take tram no. 4 or 10 to the terminus.
  • Online tickets. Regular ticket – 12 PLN. Until June 30, children up to 18 – free admission, the free ticket must be collected at the ticket office.
  • Website in English.

Parks to relax in May in Warsaw

The Ujazdowski Park (city center)

The Ujazdowski Park is one of the most valuable monuments of garden art in Warsaw (designed and opened in 1896). It is located in the heart of Warsaw, just 600 meters from Łazienki Park. It is smaller than Łazienki Park and not so crowded on weekends.

There is a large, modern playground in the park (very popular among families, so if you want to avoid the crowds, visit the playground early in the morning or outside the weekend). Until recently, part of the playground was closed for the winter period.

  • Location: Al. Ujazdowskie 6 Street, city center. Location on Google map.
  • Free entrance.
  • The park is closed at night. Opening hours 6 am – 9 pm.

Roof Garden of the Warsaw University Library

The Garden of the Warsaw University Library has two parts: the lower garden (open all year round) and the upper garden on the roof which was opened after the winter break on April 1 (it will be open to visitors until the end of October).

In the lower garden, you will find small ponds, a fountain, granite sculptures. Feel free to have a picnic on the grass – it is allowed there:)

The garden on the roof of a new building of the University of Warsaw Library is one of the largest roof gardens in Europe. From the top, you will have a wonderful view of Warsaw, including the Vistula river and the Palace of Culture and Science.

Discover Warsaw in bloom
After long months of autumn and winter, Warsaw in May comes alive with flowering trees and parks wherever you look. It is worth planning walks in one of the many Warsaw parks. Read about 14 parks in Warsaw worth visiting in our post on the website: Discover green Warsaw: charming parks and gardens in the Warsaw area to enjoy the beauty of nature.

Ideas for things to do in Warsaw in May (what’s open)

Alpine Coaster in Ochota 
Location: Górka Szczęśliwicka, Park Szczęśliwicki, Drawska 22 Street (Ochota). In the center of the Szczęśliwicki Park in Ochota, there is the highest hill in Warsaw, a 152 m slope called Górka SzczęśliwickaSince April 24, 2021 on Górka Szczęśliwicka, you can use “Alpine Coaster” (gravity slide / zjeżdżalnia grawitacyjna / kolejka górska). Opening hours Monday – Friday: 1 pm – 8 pm.  Opening hours Saturday – Sunday: 10 am – 8 pm. Limit of people: 25 people at the same time. Price for 1 ride for 1 person: 8 PLN (info about tickets). (Website and Facebook page in Polish.

A new streetfood outdoor market – OFF Brzeska (open from May 7)
Location: OFF Brzeska, Bazar Różyckiego, Brzeska 25 Street (Praga), free entrance, Friday 5 pm – 1 am, Saturday 5 pm – 2 am, Sunday 1 pm – 8 pm. During the week it is a bazaar where you can buy vegetables, fruit, etc., and from Friday to Sunday – food trucks, music, events. “OFF Brzeska” operates in the Bazar Różyckiego – the iconic marketplace of Warsaw’s Praga, opened in 1874. Facebook page.

Horse Racing at Służewiec Racetrack – open to spectators, 25% of seats available (from May 15)
Location: Tor Wyścigów Konnych Służewiec, Puławska 266 Street, online tickets (children up to 5 free entrance). Saturday: gates opening 2 pm, the start of the first race: 3.30 pm, Sunday gates opening 1 pm, the start of the first race: 2.30 pm. Website in EnglishFacebook event in Polish.

Archeological picnic at the medieval castle in Czersk
Every weekend in May, June, July, August. Location: Czersk Castle (Zamek w Czersku), Plac Tysiąclecia 1, 05-530 Czersk (south of Warsaw, 40 km from the center of Warsaw), 11 am – 5 pm (the castle opening hours: 10 am – 8 pm), regular tickets 10 PLN, reduced tickets 5 PLN. Everyday life in various historical periods – presentation of old crafts, martial arts, cuisine. Our tips in English on visiting the Czersk Castle.

Gondola, rental of canoes and wooden boats in Park of the King Jan III’s Palace in Wilanów (Wilanowskie Lake)
Location: the park of Wilanów Palace, Stanisława Kostki Potockiego 10/16 Street (first you need to buy an entrance ticket to the park). Opening hours: 10 am – 9 pm. The rental is located next to Pompownia building in the park – a pumping station at the Jezioro Wilanowskie Lake. There are available life vests, wooden boats (for 4 adults or 2 adults and 3 children; 30 min – 40 PLN, 1 hour 60 PLN, 2 hours 100 PLN) and kayaks (for 2 adults with an additional child seat; 30 min – 20 PLN, 1 hour – 30 PLN, 2 hours – 50 PLN). Gondola rides every hour. You can pay with a card. Facebook page.

The Park of the King Jan III’s Palace in Wilanów
Location: Stanisława Kostki Potockiego 10/16 Street (Wilanów). The park is a part of the Museum of King Jan III’s Palace – a baroque summer residence of King Jan III Sobieski and his wife, Queen Maria Kazimiera (the museum building is closed). It’s a vast park (45 hectares!) with gardens of different styles (Baroque, English landscape garden, rose garden, Anglo-Chinese garden) as well as Wilanowskie Lake, and lots of beautiful nature. The park’s opening hours in May: 9 am – 9 pm (last entry 8.30 pm). The park is open every day. Regular ticket 7 PLN, reduced ticket 4 PLN (children up to 7 years old – free entrance), tickets for children from the European Union – 1 PLN. The ticket area starts in the courtyard (it used to be free). On Thursdays free admission based on tickets to be collected at the ticket office and ticket machines. It’s recommended to buy tickets onlineMore about the park and beautiful photos in our post.

The Foreign Languages Library – the biggest library in Warsaw offering books in foreign languages
Location: Meissnera 5 Street (Praga). The Library is reopened from April 26, 2021. All are welcome! Opening hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 1 pm – 7 pm; Tuesday, Thursday 10 am – 4 pm. It’s the biggest library in Warsaw offering books in different foreign languages. It has over 50,000 books, audiobooks, and films, including books for children and teenagers. Most of their collection is in English but there are also books in German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Ukrainian, and Croatian. Facebook page in Polish & English. Website in Polish and English.

The Viewing Platform of the Palace of Culture and Science
Location: Plac Defilad 1 (city center). The platform is located on the 30th floor (114 m high) of the Palace of Culture and Science. Opening hours, every day: 10 am – 8 pm. Online ticketsOur tips about visiting the platform.

Sunday Yoga in Łazienki Royal Garden
Location: Łazienki Royal Garden, 10 am – 11.30 am, click here to check the meeting point (the area next to the Palace on the Isle). Families with children are welcome. Registration: yoga@dorotakobos.com (limit of 25 participants). Facebook event in Polish and English. Next event – May 9, 16, 30.

The “Breakfast Market” in Żoliborz / Targ Śniadaniowy – an outdoor shopping & street food 
Every Saturday. Location: al. Wojska Polskiego 1 Street (Żoliborz), 9 am – 4 pm, free entrance. Street food, bread, pastries, cheese, sausages, vegan delicatessen, vegetables, fruits, flowers, fish. Facebook event in Polish. Next event – May 8.

The “Breakfast Market” in Mokotów / Targ Śniadaniowy – an outdoor shopping & street food 
Every Sunday. Location: Skwer Grupy AK “Granat”, corner of Puławska and Woronicza Street (Mokotów), 10 am – 5 pm, free entrance. Street food, bread, pastries, cheese, sausages, vegan delicatessen, vegetables, fruits, flowers, fish. Facebook event in PolishNext event – May 9.

Mini zoo/petting zoo  
Location: Mini Zoo, Kolorowa 19/156 Street, poziom/level -1 (Ursus), Monday – Friday 11 am – 7 pm, Saturday – Sunday 10 am – 6 pm. At the Mini Zoo, you can feed and stroke the animals. The visits take place in the company of a Mini ZOO employee who will show and teach how to deal with animals. The Mini Zoo is located in the indoor heated room; tickets available for purchase on-site, no reservation is required. Facebook pageWebsite in Polish.

Warsaw Zoo
Location: Ratuszowa 1/3 Street (Praga). Opening hours in May, Monday-Friday: 9 am – 6 pm; weekends and holidays: 9 am – 7 pm. Last admission one hour before the Zoo closes. Online ticketsThe Zoo is open every day, including all public holidays! Two entrances/exits are open: from Ratuszowa Street and from the Gdański Bridge. Website in English.

The Park at the birthplace of Frederic Chopin in Żelazowa Wola 
Location: Chopin Museum and Park, 96-503 Sochaczew, Żelazowa Wola 15 (60 km from Warsaw). Opening hours: 10 am – 8 pm. Free entrance on Wednesday, online ticketsClick here to read our tips in English about visiting the Park.

Educational park in the Wkra river valley in Pomiechówek
Location: Park Dolina Wkry, Nasielska 1 Street, Pomiechówek (40 km from Warsaw). Open on Saturday and Sunday: 10 am – 5 pm. Attractions reopened in April include nature trail, the observation deck, playground, a treetop route. The park includes almost 10 hectares of land with educational routes. More in English about visiting the educational park in Pomiechówek.

Romantic Garden in Arkadia and Garden in Nieborów
Location: the parks are located 80 km from Warsaw. Park in Nieborów’s location on Google map and Park in Arkadia’s location on Google map. Open every day 10 am – 6 pm. Online tickets (to both parks: regular 28 PLN, reduced 16 PLN, children up to 7 free entrance; reduced tickets for students: 2 PLN. An English-style romantic garden (established in 1778) in the village of Arkadia is one of the few sentimental and romantic gardens in Europe that survived in a slightly changed form. The baroque palace in Nieborów is surrounded by a French-style gardenMore in English about visiting the parks.

The graduation tower (tężnia) in the park in Konstancin town
Location: Park Zdrojowy, Henryka Sienkiewicza Street, Konstancin-Jeziorna (The Park Zdrojowy‘s location on Google mapThe Graduation Tower’s location on Google map). The tower’s opening hours: 9 am – 7 pm (every day). The graduation tower (Tężnia Solankowa, also known as a thorn house) is an open-air ‘inhalatorium’ – a huge natural inhaler. It’s a wooden structure, covered with blackthorn branches that were originally used in the production of salt. To enter the tower area you need to buy a ticket (a regular ticket 12 PLN, a reduced ticket 7 PLN, a family ticket 2+2 30 PLN, children up to 3 free entrance). More in English about visiting Konstancin.

Re-opening after a winter season of the Upper Garden of the Royal Castle 
Location: the Garden is located at the back of the Castle. You can enter the lower garden from Wisłostrada Street / the Vistula Boulevard side. During the winter and spring season, only The Lower Garden is available. The Upper Garden is open from May 1. Opening hours: 10 am – 8 pm. Free entrance. More about the Gardens of the Royal Castle in our post.

Re-opening after a winter season of the rooftop garden of the Copernicus Science Center
Location: Centrum Nauki Kopernik, Wybrzeże Kościuszkowskie 20 Street (Powiśle), free entrance. Opening hours, May-August: 10 am – 8 pm. A relatively small garden (more like a green viewing platform) on the rooftop of the Copernicus Science Centre, overlooking the Vistula river and the Old Town. The Garden is open only during summer season. The Garden is closed on Mondays (except for May 3, 2021). Entrance through a ramp from the southern part of the building.

Visit one of 3 botanical gardens in Warsaw and its vicinity:

Day trips from Warsaw

The Kampinos Forest near Warsaw – 350 km of hiking trails

The Kampinos Forest (Puszcza Kampinoska) is located right next to the northwestern border of Warsaw. Most of its area is protected within the Kampinoski National Park (Kampinoski Park Narodowy). This is very unique on a global scale – the national park borders on the capital of the state! 

Visitors can enjoy here 350 km of hiking trails, a 200 km long bicycle trail, horse trails, 10 educational paths, 19 parking lots, and 12 rest areas located on the edge of the park. 

How to get to the Kampinos Forest?

  • Location on Google map.
  • BY CAR. A drive to the Kampinos Forest from the center of Warsaw takes about 30-60 minutes. And from such districts as Bielany or Żoliborz, a drive takes about 10 minutes.
  • BY PUBLIC TRANSPORT. You can go to the Kampinos Forest from Warsaw by public bus (110, 150, 210, 250, 714, 719, 800, 850). Most buses to the Kampinos Forest run from the vicinity of the Metro Młociny stop but also from the Metro Marymont or Metro Księcia Janusza stops. Please visit the website of Warsaw Public Transport for timetables, connections, tickets, fees.

Read more in our post on the website, including a detailed description of selected hiking trails (e.g. starting point, where to leave a car) and our tips: National parks in Poland: Kampinos Forest near Warsaw.

Nature reserves on the Vistula River (Wyspy Świderskie and Wyspy Zawadowskie), south of Warsaw

These are nature reserves located south of Warsaw (from the Wilanów district to the town of Konstancin on one side of the Vistula and from the Wawer district to the towns of Józefów and Otwock on the other side of the Vistula). They include islands, shoals, sandbanks, and the waters of the Vistula River. It is a nesting and feeding place for rare bird species and a refuge for water-related animals.

Usually, a very large area to walk and play with kids – depends on the water level. When the water level in the Vistula is low, the beach grows large. In the afternoons and evenings, the inhabitants of Warsaw visit this area because of the beautiful sunsets. Photographers are drawn to the vast panorama of Warsaw’s skyscrapers.

How to get there by public transport:
By car, you can get there to various places near the Vistula, on both sides of it. Here are some examples of locations on the Google map:
Click here to find out more about one-day trips from Warsaw in our post. 10+ spots to explore in the Warsaw area (how to get there, opening hours, tickets info, photos).

“Warsaw Your Place” – a brochure dedicated to people who are thinking of moving to Warsaw

The Warsaw Office has developed a new free brochure in English “Warsaw Your Place”.  It’s dedicated mainly to people who are thinking of moving to Warsaw and investors who are considering running their business there. 

Cost of living, moving around the city, education, shopping, free time, fun facts about Warsaw, etc.

Click here to download the brochure (PDF).

News from Warsaw: new regulations for electric scooters in Poland; extension of the paid parking zone by 2 districts & changes in parking subscription

Changes in the regulations on electric scooters in Poland from May 19, 2021

  • Where can you ride an electric scooter? Obligation to ride an electric scooter on the bicycle path or bike lane. The electric scooter can be used exceptionally on the sidewalk when there is no separate path for bicycles (however, you will have to go there at a speed close to the speed of a pedestrian and give way to a pedestrian). You can drive an e-scooter on the street only if there is no bicycle lane and a bicycle lane (but this only applies to a street where vehicle traffic is allowed at a speed of no more than 30 km / h). Please note that this only applies to people over 10 years of age – children under 10 are not allowed to ride e-scooters in public spaces.
  • Are there age limits? People from 10 to 18 years of age must have a bicycle license or a driving license to drive the electric scooter. For persons over 18 years of age, such a document is not required. Children up to 10 years old can ride the electric scooter only in the residential area, under the supervision of an adult. 
  • Can two people ride an electric scooter? Only one person is allowed to ride the electric scooter.
  • Speed limit: 20 km/h.
  • Do the tickets apply to riding e-scooters? There is a fine from 100 PLN to 350 PLN for exceeding the speed limit or failure to comply with the rules of moving on the pavement. The highest fine, up to 500 PLN, is for riding an electric scooter under the influence of alcohol or other substances that disrupt perception.

Extension of the paid parking zone in Warsaw by 2 districts (Żoliborz and Ochota) & changes in parking subscription from September 6, 2021

Also, from September 6, 2021, there will be a change in parking subscriptions for people living in the paid parking zone. Only people who settle PIT tax in Warsaw are to be able to obtain a subscription entitling them to free parking.

There will also be a new extended option for the parking subscription. Currently, subscription holders can park for free in a small area close to their place of residence. This subscription, costing PLN 30 per year, includes several (maximum 8) parking meters located no more than 150 m from the house. The new option of the parking subscription will entitle you to a free parking space in a much larger area, covering the entire estate or a significant part of the district (e.g. the entire Rakowiec or Powiśle). These areas will include several dozen streets and from several hundred to 1.5 thousand parking spaces. Thanks to this new subscription, you will be able to get an ID allowing you to park in additional places reserved only for residents. The cost of the new subscription will be PLN 600 per year. Residents will also be able to stay with the previous subscription, which will continue to be issued on the current terms. The changes will enter into force on September 6, 2021. It will be possible to apply for new subscriptions in August.

Photo source: Zarząd Dróg Miejskich

Foodsharing in Warsaw: places in Warsaw where you can leave food for others and help yourself with what other people have left

Does this sometimes happen at your home: leftovers from lunch? you bought too much fruit and you know you won’t have time to eat it? cans gathering dust at the back of your cupboard?

Would you rather share your food and leftovers instead of throwing them away?

Foodsharing point (jadłodzielnia in Polish) is a place where you can leave food for others if you are unable to consume it. There you can also help yourself with what other people have left behind.

Each point has its volunteers who manage them. The goal is to reduce everyday food waste. Foodsharing points are used by indigent people, but not only. Anyone can take any leftover food, no matter how wealthy they are.

  • In our new post on the website, you will find a map of foodsharing points in Poland run by Foodsharing Polska and a list foodsharing points in Warsaw by districts: Foodsharing in Warsaw.

Weather in Poland in May

May in Poland is usually warm and reasonably dry. Sunny weather can even turn hot. The average monthly temperature in May in Poland is 13,7°C / 56,7°F, and the average monthly rainfall level is 62,1 mm.

The name of the month (maj) comes from the Latin name Maius. May and March are the only months whose Polish names derive from Latin. Polish names of the remaining months have Slavic roots.

Lilac (bez) is a queen among spring flowers that bloom in May in Poland. In Poland, the most common are purple and white lilacs. It smells awesome but unfortunately, it is very fragile and withers quickly in the home vase. Lilac came to Poland from Turkey through the Balkan Peninsula. For years, an essential part of Polish rural gardens. Blooming usually lasts only up to two weeks so hurry to admire lilac!

Poland in May turns into an orchard full of blooming fruit trees. It’s the time when fruit trees are in fool bloom. Wonderful sakura cherries receive special admiration in Japan, they are the symbol of Japan. In Poland, in the spring, pear, apple, cherry, plum trees bloom. Apple trees, however, dominate in Poland, with their white, slightly pinkish flowers. May also means the start of a busy season for bees!

You can’t miss pinkish-white cone-shaped flowers of chestnuts (kasztan) that have become a symbol of high-school final exams in Poland that take place in May (this year exceptionally in June).
In Poland, chestnuts grow mainly in parks and along roads. It is a huge tree – in Poland, the largest chestnut trees reach about 30 m in height and about 600 cm in the circumference of the trunk. The oldest chestnut in Poland grows in the Wielkopolskie Province and is over 200 years old!

Read more about the weather and changes in nature in Poland in spring.

Sunday trade ban in Poland in May 2021

In May 2021, all Sundays are trade ban Sundays. The next shopping Sunday in Poland is June 27, 2021. Click here to read our post about shopping Sundays in Poland in 2021. Read our post with the list of online stores in Warsaw and other cities in Poland delivering groceries to home.

Public holidays & dates to remember in Poland in May 2021

  • May 1

Labor Day
A bank/public holiday in Poland. Stores, malls, shopping centers are closed. Only some smaller local convenience stores can be open. Stores at gas stations are open every day, 24 h. Usually, in Warsaw and other major cities in Poland, there are political marches to promote workers’ rights.

  • May 2

Flag Day
A regular working day (Sunday in 2021). It’s a relatively new holiday in Poland (introduced in 2004). You can notice Polish flags in some private windows and balconies as well as displayed in public institutions buildings.

  • May 3

Constitution Day
A bank/public holiday in Poland. The May 3rd Constitution was passed in 1791 and is claimed to be the first written constitution in Europe and the second one in the world (after the American one). Usually, Constitution Day is celebrated with speeches, military parades, picnics, however, this year due to the COVID-19 lockdown in Poland, some events can be prohibited.

  • May 23

Whit Sunday / Pentecost / Zielone Świątki
A public/bank holiday in Poland (always on Sunday anyway). The Day of Descent of the Holy Spirit – Zielone Świątki (Green Holidays). In Poland, some people decorate their homes with branches with green leaves.

  • May 26

Mother’s Day
It is a day when you call your mum, send her a card, flowers or other gifts. Father’s Day in Poland is celebrated on June 23.

Current covid restrictions & regulations in Poland

From May 1

  • Beauty salons, hairdressers, beauticians open in all voivodeships in Poland.
  • Change of the limit: it is possible to do sports in the outdoor sports facilities – within the limit of 50 people.
  • Possibility to practice sports in indoor sports facilities and swimming pools:
    • for organized groups of children and youth,
    • up to 50 percent of capacity of the facility.

From May 4

  • Children from grades 1-3 of primary schools return to school in all voivodeships in Poland (the hybrid model is no longer applicable).
  • Opening of shopping malls, DIY, and furniture stores (limit of 1 person per 15 m²).
  • Opening of museums and galleries (limit of 1 person per 15 m²).
  • Change of the limit of people in churches and places of worship: 1 person per 15 m². Recommendation to hold the ceremonies in the open air.

From May 8

  • Opening of hotels (50 percent of the hotel capacity, closed restaurants and wellness & spa area). Hotel restaurants remain closed, meals can only be served in rooms. The hotel’s swimming pools, spa areas, and gyms will also be unavailable. May 15: Opening of open-air gardens in hotel restaurants. May 28: Opening of hotel restaurants (also inside, 50 percent of the capacity). May 28: Opening of swimming pools, gyms, fitness areas.

From May 15

  • There will be no obligation to wear masks in the open air. The obligation to cover the nose and mouth with a mask inside the buildings will remain the same.
  • Opening of restaurants open-air gardens (every other table may be taken).
  • Opening of open-air cinemas and theaters (50 percent of the capacity).
  • The audience can take part in outdoor sports events (maximum 25% of the capacity).

From May 17

  • Children from grades 4-8 of primary schools and grades 1-4 of secondary schools return to schools in a hybrid model.

From May 21

  • Opening of cinemas and theaters (moved from May 29).
  • Opening of cultural centers, educational centers (indoor).
  • Opening of open-air amusement parks.

From May 28 (previously announced – from May 29)

  • Opening of the restaurants (also inside, 50 percent of the capacity).
  • Possibility of organizing events inside, incl. weddings and communions (limit up to 50 people). Fully vaccinated against COVID-19 does not count.
  • Opening of cinemas and theaters (50 percent of the capacity).
  • Opening of swimming pools and indoor sports facilities for everyone (50 percent of the capacity).
  • Opening of gyms, fitness clubs, solariums (limit of 1 person per 15 m²).

From May 31

  • Children from grades 4-8 of primary schools and grades 1-4 of secondary schools return to schools (the hybrid model is no longer applicable).

Find out more in our posts to stay up to date:

Subscribe to the Kids in the City’s weekly newsletter in English. The newsletter called What’s on in Warsaw for Kids & Families / Family life in Warsaw during the pandemic is emailed every Thursday and covers things to do in Warsaw with children and all kinds of family matters – information, tips, resources in English.


Click on the photos below to read other posts:

Foodsharing in Warsaw and other cities in Poland

International schools in Warsaw

Warsaw parks

Day Trips From Warsaw