With a population of 700,000, Łódź is Poland’s third-largest city, but you’d be forgiven for feeling underwhelmed upon arrival. The main station is big enough to serve a megacity, yet it’s empty – it almost feels like you have gotten off at the wrong stop. All is not lost. With a thriving bar scene, one of Poland’s best restaurants and some fantastic parks: Łódź is a city worth exploring – here is what to do.
Urban Food Tel Aviv:
This is actually a chain that originated in Warsaw which has now spread to Lodz. My natural instinct is to avoid chain restaurants but this is hands down the best of the vegan restaurants in town, independent or otherwise. Their ‘I can’t make up my mind bowl’ is one of the best buddha bowls I’ve ever had. Service is excellent, there is a great outdoor seating area and they serve the most refreshing juices in Poland. It is slightly more expensive than most restaurants – between 20-30zl for a main – but absolutely worth it.
Walk along Piotrkowska Street:
At 4.2km long, this is one of the longest commercial streets in the world. It is filled with bars, restaurants (including Urban Food Tel Aviv) and all sorts of shops. You could easily spend a whole day wandering down it, testing out bars as you go – there are a lot of them. I’d recommend Krawatow Bar – it’s always brimming with people, the bar staff are great, the drinks are cheap and it has an authentic bar atmosphere.
Go to Manufaktura:
This former textile factory has been redeveloped into a vast hub of entertainment. It contains 240 shops, a cinema complex, restaurants, an interactive museum and a series of outdoor activity stands e.g. trampoline bungee jumps. With the chance to eat, shop and be active there is something for everyone here. A special mention has to be given to the beach bar, set up in the square, within which you can grab a drink, relax or evem play a game of volleyball.
Find a Park:
Łódź has over 30 parks dotted around Piotrowska Street, some of which are truly beautiful. You could spend a day in one or you could hop from one to the next, as you walk through the city. Helenów, Starowmiejski and Źródliska are the prettiest of the ones that are close to Pietrkowska. Another great park is Mickiewicza, but it’s a 45 minute walk north of Manufaktura so I’d recommend getting a bike to visit there.
Check out the Street Art:
Łódź is blessed with a plethora of street art and is visible all over the city. As opposed to allocating this as one activity, you’re better off keeping your eyes peeled throughout your stay, this way you’ll spot them whilst you explore the city.