- General Info
- Points of Interest
Area: 312 685 kmÂ² (120 728 milesÂ²)
Capital: Warsaw. Population: 1.7 million
Population: 38.1 million
Currency: Zloty (PLN symbol Zl) = 100 groszy
Government: Republic since 1918.
Tipping: 10 to 15% is customary in restaurants and cafes. Tipping in self-service restaurants is not expected. Tips for porterâ€™s services in hotels and train stations are customary but amounts are at the travellerâ€™s discretion.
Legal drinking age: 18
Time zone: GMT + 1 (GMT + 2 from last Sunday in March to last Sunday in October)
Poland: Social customs
Poles are friendly, industrious people and foreigners are usually made very welcome. There are vast contrasts between urban and rural life and the Polish peasantry is very religious and conservative, maintainingRead more a traditional lifestyle. Roman Catholicism plays an important role in daily life and criticism or jokes about religion are not appreciated, despite the general good humour of the people. Music and art are also important aspects of Polish culture. Shaking hands is the normal form of greeting. Normal courtesies are observed when visiting private homes and it is customary to bring flowers, preferably in odd numbers. Fairly conservative casual wear is the most suitable attire, but dress should be formal when specified for entertaining in the evening or in a smart restaurant. Smoking is restricted in some public buildings. Photography: Military installations including border points should not be photographed.
Poland: Food and local specialties
Poland has a distinctive cuisine, with typical ingredients being dill, marjoram, caraway seeds, wild mushrooms and sour cream, which is frequently added to soups, sauces and braised meats. Soups play anRead more important part at mealtimes and are usually rich and very thick. Barszcz (beetroot soup), however, runs thin and clear and is often served in cups with small hot pasties stuffed with meat or cabbage. There are several salt- and fresh-water fish dishes using trout, carp and herring. Pastries, such as szarlotka (apple cake), packi (jelly doughnuts) and makowiec (poppy seed cake) can be bought at a cukiernia. Note that big cities offer a selection of other world cuisines. The national specialties are: Bigos (sauerkraut, fresh cabbage, onions and any variety of leftover meat). Salted and rolled herring fillets with pickles and onions. Kabanos (long, thick sausages). Pierogi (dumplings stuffed with either meat, mushrooms and cabbage, cheese or fruit). Kasza (buckwheat). Vodka (wódka, in many various flavours - try krupnik and źołądkowa). The best bottled beer is zywiec, a fairly strong lager-type beer.