Most of the world tourists think of Krakow and Warsaw as the best Polish touristic attractions, but today Distrita wants this image to change. Swinoujscie is a town of about 30 000 (double from May to September) which sits next to the Baltic sea and is on an island that is shared between Germany and Poland.
This article goes thru everything you can do in the summertime, but Swinoujscie is also nice in winter. Maybe not so much for swimming in the ocean and getting brown on the beach, but for exploring and relaxing. Wintertime in Swinoujscie is also nice.
The reason for mentioning Swinoujscie town as the Polish “Mediterranean” Town in the topic is because it is that. Fact is that this is one of the most relaxing touristic cities to visit. The beach stretches all the way from the Swina river and crosses into Germany. Yes, both Poland and Germany share the island which is named Uznam.
How to get there?
You can take flights, trains, boats or busses for visiting the town. The nearest airport is in Kaminke in Germany, but the name of the airport is Flughafen Heringsdorf. This airport is built just a few meters from the Polish border and it is, in fact, closer to Swinoujscie in Poland than to Achlbeck or even Heringsdorf in Germany which is on the very same Uznam island. Here are the flight companies that goes to Flughafen Heringsdorf:
There is also another airport which is nearer Szczecin than Swinoujscie which is named Goleniow. Many more airplane companies go here like Norwegian and Ryanair. The only downside is that the connection from this airport to the train station in Goleniow city is not so good. You need to take a Taxi and they like to take more than they should, especially if it’s on a Sunday or on a day off.
When it comes to trains. Swinoujscie got 2 train stations. One for the UBB Bahn which takes you to Ahlbeck, Heringsdorf, and Berlin in Germany from Zussow. The other one is on the other side of the river Swina. You need to actually cross the river inside Swinoujscie city center to be able to travel between these two train stations. From the other station, you can take the Polish railways to Szczecin, Warsaw, Gdansk, and Krakow.
On the ferry side of things, Swinoujscie is connected with Copenhagen in Denmark, Bornholm in Denmark, Ystad in Sweden and Ahlbeck in Germany. The most used are the ones to Copenhagen and to Ystad. These are ferries with space for cars. Travel time over the Baltic Sea is about a night sleep from 23.00 to 07.00.
What to do in Swinoujscie?
Here you can relax on the beach, buy cheap food and clothes. If you find laying down on the beach a bit too relaxing you can walk along the sea to Germany and back. You can also walk or bike at a relaxing speed to Germany and back. EU has funded and helped so that Poland and Germany have built networks of biking roads on the Uznam island. Swinoujscie and Ahlbeck are connected by a pedestrian road for people walking and biking that connects these cities promenade streets. These promenades in both cities have sale booths, restaurants, and relaxing life. There are also concerts.
But if you are tired of the beach and promenade sightseeing. You can bike around on the whole Uznam island without showing any passport at all. Poland is in Schengen and since it became a member, the borders are now totally open. This makes Uznam to one of the best biking islands in the world. Here you can explore nature, German villages like Kaminke and Swinoujscie. There are biking roads all over the town, thanks to EU fundings and support. Here you can also get one of the worlds best ice creams. Distrita has the picture of the ice cream bar. You have to try it to believe it.
Museums, Food Places, and Restaurants
There are many historical museums in Swinoujscie and old fortresses which dates more than 1000 years. Some were even used by the Sovjets during the communistic times.
When it comes to food. Then be aware that the city got Polish food mostly. The city also has Turkey Kebab places on the promenade, a recently opened McDonalds and there are sushi places. But the best food is fish and french fries. Yes, I know that most know this as a British thing, but in Poland, the fish is very tasty. Also, you get a lot more food on the plate for the price you pay in Poland than in most European countries. Poland is getting more and more expensive, but still, it’s one of Europes cheapest countries to buy food in. Germans know this, so they visit Swinoujscie every day and the Polish citizens in this town know about this. So, Swinoujscie is a rich country thanks to Germans giving its income.
Getting around in the town
Swinoujscie is a small city. The city center is also tiny, but the town itself got Buss and Taxi. The busses take you to different places in Swinoujscie town and to Ahlbeck and Heringsdorf. When it comes to Taxi, the city has lots of Taxi companies. Make sure that you ask about the price first as these Taxi companies competes a lot.
The city center is on the Uznam island, but the other part of the city is also on the other side of the Swina river. You can get there with the city ferry. The city ferry is free for bikers and people, while only cars from Swinoujscie can drive here. Other drivers have to take another ferry which is a bit outside of Swinoujscie.
So, when you come to Swinoujscie by ferry from Ystad in Sweden or from Copenhagen in Denmark. You will always dock on the side where the second train station in Swinoujscie is. To get to the city center, you need to take the ferry. The ferry goes often during the day and not so often during the night. There have been many discussions about a tunnel or a bridge over the Swina river, but nothing has been made yet.
Is this a touristic city for families? Yes! Is this a town for relaxing couples? Yes! Is this a town for people loving cinema and theme parks? No! Is this a town for people want to explore places? Yes! Swinoujscie is the place to visit if you don’t want to ruin yourself. It’s a cheap place, with rather positive Polish service and great food. Go here in the summer, but also winter is great. Distrita has tried to guide you thru the most essential stuff to do in Swinoujscie. Please write back if you have any questions.