The pier in Sopot and organ in Oliwa

During an extended stay in Gdansk, it’s worth visiting Sopot, located just up the coast. Founded in the mid-19th century, often called the Monte Carlo of the north, from the very beginning Sopot was a seaside resort and a place for vacationers. The city offers a wide range of attractions in the summer, including numerous restaurants, cafés and night clubs. After a day on the beach, there’s time for a stroll down the promenade and a concert at the beautiful Lesna (Forest) Opera. The pier is Sopot’s most unique feature - the half-kilometre-long wooden promenade is nearly 150 years old. The pier offers a great view of the long coastline and an equally picturesque panorama of the city. Right next to the beach is the Grand Hotel, Sopot’s largest and most elegant hotel, built in the 1920s in the Emperor Wilhelm Baroque style, and recently renovated. Halfway between Gdansk and Sopot is Oliwa, famous around the world for its precious organ, housed in Oliwa cathedral.

A few kilometers west of Sopot is Gdynia. This city was built from scratch, on the site of an existing village, in the 1920s and ’30s. It was designed as the port and shipbuilding center for Poland, which regained its independence in 1918. Gdynia’s modern center is a favourite shopping area among Tricity residents. Places to relax include the nearby Nadmorski (Seaside) Boulevard, which runs at the foot of a scenic park right on to Sopot. Gdynia is home to one of the world’s largest shipyards, built in 1923.