Warsaw is one of nicest cities in Central Europe. The architecture is impressive and the locals are some of the nicest people you will ever meet.
But behind the city’s calm veneer, lies a tumultuous past that continue to shape the way locals live and interact with the rest of the world. One of the darkest and bloodiest moments in the city’s history is the Warsaw Uprising in 1944.
The Warsaw Uprising was a solid testament to the Polish people’s resistance to the Nazi regime. During the event, thousands died as they fought against the Nazi Germany’s occupation of Poland.
As a memorial to those who gave their lives to the cause, the Warsaw Uprising Museum or Museum Powstania Warszawskiego was opened in 2004, as part of the 60th anniversary commemoration of the bloody event.
Occupying a former tram power station, the 2,000 square meter museum houses some of the most moving and important mementos of the uprising.
There are about 1,00 exhibits and 1,500 photographs including pictures of the brave men and women of Warsaw who fought against the Nazi forces.
But what really moved me is the dedicated exhibit for the young Polish soldiers who despite their age, contributed greatly to the uprising. Some of the young Poles delivered important mails and communications under the nose of the Nazi’s. Others served as medics and healed the wounded
A replica of the The Little Insurgent monument can also be found inside the museum. The actual monument is located inside the walls of Warsaw’s Old Town or Stare Miasto.
A Polish friend whom I visited during my visit to Warsaw insisted that I spend an hour or so inside the museum so I would have a better understanding of the city’s history and of its people psyche. He was absolutely right.
A great deal of exhibits inside the Uprising Museum brought me close to tears and silenced me.
There is the Hall of Remembrance, a tribute to those who perished in the war. There also the black and white photos of Warsaw before and after the Nazis burned it to the ground as retaliation. Fact: The entire Old City was obliterated by the Nazi forces and the old city that now stands is merely a a faithful reconstruction of the original.
A wall displaying the timeline of events is located right at the heart of the museum reminding visitors of the series of circumstances that led to Warsaw’s destruction.
You will also see a replica of the Warsaw sewers, which insurgents used to move around the city during the uprising.
One of the highlights of the museum is an exact replica of a B24 Allied plane used to drop supplies to the city.
Before you exit the museum, spare a few minutes to watch “City of Ruins” a short video showing the depth of destruction Warsaw suffered during the city’s liberation in 1945.
Visiting the Uprising Museum was one of the highlights of my visit to Warsaw. It opened my eyes to the true pain and suffering the people of Warsaw felt during the occupation.
The museum is also a great reminder to visitors and to the outside world of the need to be vigilant against any form of oppression. A reminder that never again should we let our freedom be curtailed and our voices stifled.
Mon., Wed., Fri. 10 am – 6 pm, Thu. 10 am – 8 pm, Sat.-Sun. 10 am – 6 pm
regular – 18 PLN, reduced – 14 PLN, groups – 10 PLN/person