Lodz, with a population of 697,000, located about 100 kilometers southwest of Warsaw, is Poland’s third largest city. It is the center of the country’s light industry, where almost half of Poland’s textiles are produced.
Save on a trip to Lodz!
Lodz was named a city as early as 1423, but in 1820 it had a population of only 800. Changes began in 1823 with the construction of the New Town (Nowe Miasto) – the first settlement of textile workers. Removal of customs barriers between Poland and Russia led to a sharp increase in textile exports to Russia, and by the end of the 19th century Lodz had become one of the world’s textile industry centers.
During World War II, the Nazis set up two transit camps in Łódź for Polish prisoners of war, as well as a camp for Russian pilots, a camp for 5,000 Roma from Germany, Austria and the Balkan countries, and a camp for 4,000 Polish children. In neighboring Chelmno and Nerem about 260,000 Jews were killed; the inhabitants of the city itself were also affected – after the war only half of the 600,000 remained.
After the war, new houses and industrial enterprises sprang up around the historical areas of the city. In addition to the traditional textile industry, the electrical and chemical industries appeared in Lodz. New institutions of higher education were opened, the most famous of which is the State Higher School of Film, Theater and Television. The University of Lodz has a Polish language department for foreigners.
The main attraction of Lodz is Piotrkowska Street, a wide pedestrian street, 5 km long, which divides the city in two.
It contains many of the most beautiful buildings of the city, which host hotels, restaurants and bars, and in the summer the street turns into a series of outdoor cafes. Also here, in the “White Factory” is the Museum of Textile Industry (Muzeum Wlokiennictwa, ul. Piotrkowska 282, open: Tue-Cp, nm 9.00-17.00, Thu 11.00-19.00, Sat, Sun 11.00-16.00, entrance fee, www.muzeumwlokiennictwa.pl) . It tells the story of the development of textile technology, and presents a superb collection of textiles from all over the world, from the 16th century to the present day.
There are other interesting museums in Lodz. The Museum of Art (Sztuki Muzeum, ul. Wiackowskiego 36, open: Tue 10.00-17.00, Mon, Fri 11.00-17.00, Thu 12.00-17.00, Sat, Sat 10.00-16.00, admission paid, www.muzeumsztuki.lodz.pl) The Museum of the History of Lodz, housed in the former palace of the Poznanski family, displays works of Polish and foreign art from the 19th century to the present. Lodz History Museum (Muzeum Historii Miasta Lodzi, ul. Ogrodowa 15, open: Sat-Fri 10.00-14.00, Tue, Thu 10.00-16.00, cp 14.00-18.00, admission paid, www.poznanskipalace.muzeum-lodz.pl) is located in another palace of the Poznanski and houses historical documents showing what the city looked like before the destruction during World War II.
Łódź Film School
Roman Polanski writes in his autobiography that “Łódź became the cinematic capital of Poland through a caprice of history. After the war, the capital Vashava lay in ruins. and the government chose the nearest suitable city when looking for a place for a film center.” Two years after the end of World War II, the Krakow Film School was relocated to Łódź, and it has been the place where Polish filmmakers have been trained ever since. Probably the best-known director of the Łódź Film School is Polanski (Rosemary’s Baby, Chinatown); other famous masters include director Andrzej Wajda (Promised Land, Man of Iron, Danton) and Krzysztof Kisłowski (The Double Life of Veronica, Three Colors: Blue, White, Red).
The way there and back
From the airport (www.airport.lodz.pl) , where buses number 55, number 56 and L (2.40zt, 20 minutes) , there are several flights in the British direction, including London (at least once a day) and Dublin (twice a week) . Domestic flights are not served by this airport.
From Łódź Fabryczna station, which is located 400 m east of the city center, you can get to Warsaw (33zt, one and a half hours, hourly departures) , Częstochowa (25zt, two hours, four trips per day) and Krakow (40zt, four and a half hours, two trips per day) . Lodz Kaliska station is 1.2 km south-west of the city center and can be reached by streetcar no. 12. Trains from here go to Warsaw (35zt, one hour and forty, four trips a day) , Częstochowa (35zt, two hours, seven trips a day) , Krakow (51zl, five hours, four trips a day) , Wrocław (46zt, four hours, five trips per day) , Poznań (31zt, 4.5 hours, five trips per day) , Turun (37zt, 2.5 hours, 12 trips per day) and Gdańsk (56zt, seven hours, five trips per day) . Buses go in all directions from the bus station near Lodz Fabryczna.
Łódź: things to see and see
“There’s nothing to see in Lodz,” they said. My inner skeptic raised his eyebrows up in surprise. Having taken more than 31 thousand steps in this beautiful day, I can confidently say … However, it is better to show first! And whether you should go to Łódź or not, you decide for yourself
It definitely differs from all tourist towns like Torun, Gdansk, Wroclaw… Red brick buildings, high chimneys of former boilers and factories, futuristic inserts, unexpected sculptures – all this makes a walk through Lodz feel like you accidentally got into the scenery of some early 20th century movie. And meanwhile, it’s only an hour and a half away from Warsaw. Shall we look into Łódź’s unique eyes?
You can describe the interesting places in Lodz in any order, but it’s probably best to do it by itinerary. I took the FlixBus lowcost bus – for value for money it’s probably the most convenient way. We get to Łódź Fabryczna railway station, which is actually in the center of the city. If you look at the map, the most important sights will be at the top. But if we go straight up, we won’t see a lot of interesting things, so first we will go a little aside, then go down and then go up the longest street in Poland – Petrykowska.
I carefully prepared an approximate itinerary for you. With museums and almost no rest, it took me almost 8 hours, and I didn’t have enough time to go to the Botanical Gardens on the left. However, I could always drive up, if necessary.
The station is .
Large and empty. Not much food, not much entertainment either, but there are elaborate waiting rooms where it doesn’t blow like the rest of the space.
Just a few hundred yards from the station is the up-and-coming EC-1 Science Museum Complex, rebuilt from an old power plant. The architects did a great job and wove a single whole from the industrial building and futuristic inserts. No wonder that this very complex won first place in the popular vote of the “7 New Wonders of Poland”, at the awarding ceremony of which I even managed to visit, thanks to an invitation from the National Geographic.
Today you can go to the Planetarium and wander around the building and its surroundings, as well as the Science and Technology Center. It’s worth spending at least three hours there! It is best to buy tickets in advance through the Internet. For example, family (2 +1) costs 18 PLN (and regular adult 23 PLN).
Park and conservatory
The park is pretty, the greenhouse is small, and I didn’t go inside.
Edward Herbsta Palace (Museum Pałac Herbsta)
We are used to kings and queens living in palaces. But we are in Łódź, the main city of factories! What about the industrialists? In the 19th century it was the center of the textile industry, and Herbst was one of the owners of the production. It’s curious to look inside the entrepreneur’s house, isn’t it? Inside there are paintings, furniture, household items of a bygone era. It’s interesting to listen to your own feelings: where is more comfortable – in the palace of a ruler or a factory owner?
I liked the house-museum very much, and judging by the ratings on Tripadvisor I am far from alone.
After your visit, be sure to relax in the garden and “savor” the experience – because there’s another museum ahead, so it’s worth a rest.
Opening hours: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., except Mondays. Tickets cost: 10 – full, 5 – discount, for youth up to 26 years old – 1 zł. Address: ul. Przędzalniana 72.
Museum of Textile Industry (Muzeum Włókiennictwa)
It is enough just to enter the territory, and we are in the museum. Or at the movies. If you go to the right, you will find historic houses, and if you go to the left, you will come to the weaving shop with machines.
I must say that the cottages and the church are more recent – they were transported from the outskirts of Lodz. This cute little box, for example, used to stand about 5 km away, serving as a streetcar stop.
The most interesting thing is in the loom hall, but be sure to take a look inside the old huts (which will be open).
Opening hours: 09.00 – 17.00 on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays, 12.00 – 19.00 on other days except Mondays. Tickets cost: 10 – full ticket, 6 – reduced ticket price, admission free on Thursdays Address: ul. Piotrkowska 282.
The Łódź Botanical Garden is popular with lots of people. Nearby is the zoo. Children are likely to be happy. I did not get to this place, although I’ve marked it on the map – there will be something to visit next time.
We climbed the main tourist street in Lodz – Piotrkowska. It is also the longest street in Poland and one of the longest in Europe – the way from the beginning to the end is 4.9 km. Part of it is pedestrian. The most fashionable cafes and popular street events and fairs are concentrated here.
Here and there – different sculptures, and also – its own alley of movie stars. The reason it’s here is because Lodz is home to the State Higher School of Cinema, Television and Theater, which is respected throughout Europe. Among the graduates of the school are the winners of prestigious awards – Krzysztof Kislewski, Roman Polanski, Andrzej Wajda, Krzysztof Zanussi and others.
Karol Poznański Palace (Pałac Karola Poznańskiego)
Another item that is frantically recommended by guidebooks, and which I did not get into. (There was not enough time! Who has nothing to see in Łódź :)))
Judging by the description, it resonates with the Edward Herbst Palace – both places display the interiors and household items of the factory owners. It’s worth a visit, especially since admission is free on Sunday.
Opening hours: 09.00-20.00, except Mondays. Ticket prices: No information yet. Please contact me if you will be there. Address: Gdańska 32.
City Museum (Muzeum Miasta Łodzi)
Another beautiful building in front of us. I don’t know about you, but before its façade I felt I was in aristocratic Vienna.
Inside is a museum of the city. But not a simple one. Its peculiarity is that the exposition is decorated in the form of rooms of famous Poles, natives of Lodz and the region. Among them are the famous pianist Artur Rubinstein, Nobel Prize winner Vladislav Reimont…
Opening hours: Mon, Tue, Thu: 10.00-16.00, Wed, Sat, Sunday: 12.00-18.00, Friday off. Ticket prices: 12 – full, 8 – preferential, Address: ul. Ogrodowa 15.
Yay! We are here! This museum and exhibition complex know everything. Erected relatively recently, it is very beloved by the citizens and guests of Lodz.
If you happened to overdose on cultural attractions, you can take refuge in the shopping center. If you don’t – welcome to the museum, which, it seems to me, already by industrial-lodz tradition is called in an unpretentious way – M32.
We sit, relax, drink coffee. It’s probably evening, and it’s time to enjoy the last minutes of our stay in Łódź before heading back home. Or to go on new adventures
Where to stay in Łódź
Besides sightseeing, Lodz is a great place to have a “factory” photo shoot in the now fashionable surroundings of red brick and glass. If you want to have a quiet trip, Lodz is the perfect place to spend two days. Here are some nice hotels near the center.
How to get to Lodz
The cheapest way to do it is with the low-cost bus carrier FlixBus – tickets start at 1 zloty, and the average price at which you can buy a ticket is about 15-20 zloty one way. Buses to Lodz from Warsaw depart from the platform at Młociny subway station.
You can also take the train, but it will cost a little more.
You can also rent a car and drive through several Polish cities at once, without rushing and at your own pace.