Poznań, like many other cities, has different faces. Some are better known, others less so. Most, especially abroad, associate it only with the Poznań International Fair. This is a pity, because the city has a lot to offer. That is why today I have prepared a list of 10 unusual attractions, ideas for activities in Poznań.

Worth seeing attractions in Poznan

Poznań is the 5th largest city in Poland (in terms of both size and population, it seems to me to be the average). So it should not surprise anyone that it therefore has many worthwhile and interesting attractions.

Of course, not every attraction offered by Poznań will be for everyone. Each of us has different interests and thus something else may attract his or her attention. Nevertheless, it is worth exploring some of the alternatives.

Below you will find a list of some interesting attractions that may be of interest to different people. Some of these places are not known about by visitors to Poznań.

Stare zoo w Poznaniu Wilk
Stare Zoo (eng. Old Zoo) w Poznaniu Wilk

Poznan Fortifications Trail – for military enthusiasts

As you may or may not already know, the city of Poznań was once a stronghold. Consequently, various types of military buildings including a network of forts were built on its territory as well as in the surrounding area (now the city).

Most are not accessible on a daily basis. However, once a year at the end of August, Poznań Fortress Days are held. On this occasion, various festivities are held on the grounds of many of them, during which it is possible to visit the surrounding fort. Or at least the part that is suitable for this.

Poznan also has several museums dedicated to the military, e.g. the Museum of Armoured Weapons, the Museum of Wielkopolska Uprising 1918-1919 (Old Market Square), the Wielkopolska Military Museum (Old Market Square).

Fotoplastikon – for lovers of photography and science

Certainly not many of you know what a photoplasticon is at all. However, your grandparents and perhaps also your parents could describe this device with their eyes closed. In the simplest terms, a photoplasticon is a machine in which photographs are displayed. It looks a bit like a big barrel around which chairs are arranged for the observers. When you sit down on them, you can see different images through special viewfinders, depending on where you are. After a few minutes, the inside of the drum rotates and the picture that was next to it is shown.

Fotoplastikon in Poznań
Fotoplastikon in Poznań

In practice, however, it is an optical illusion because there are 2 images, one for the right eye and one for the left eye. This method gives the impression of a three-dimensional image.

Fotoplastykon is located at 44 Ratajczaka Street, 61-728 Poznań. Entrance to it is through the “CIK”.

The Trail of Poznań Murals and Neon Signs – for art lovers

Poznan is one of those cities where murals as well as street art have caught on fairly well. As a result, you can find a lot of them in the city itself. Many of them are even true works of art, which sometimes refer to symbols of cities, pop culture or to commemorate a person or an event.

Zegary słoneczne nad Maltą

Various types of sundials can be found at Malta (an artificial lake located between Śródka and Antoninek). They are made on the pattern of clocks from different historical eras.

So here we have clocks such as:

  • a ring clock showing the time with an accuracy of up to 15 minutes (during certain times of the year, of course),
  • a classical clock with a diameter of 65 cm, the time is shown on it by the shadow of a gnome,
  • the Proto-Slavic clock
  • analemmatic clock – where the observer (or rather his shadow) is the pointer
zegar słoneczny nad Maltą
sundial over Malta

KontenerART next to the River Warta

If you are looking for a moment of relaxation then the River Warta area is a good place to do this. And if you find that you want to have a beer or something to eat (even natural ice cream) while listening to good music, then the Kontenery is the place to go.

Fragment KontenerART

Rooftop café with views of the city

In Poznań, there are several restaurants and cafés which, when it is warm (in spring, summer, early autumn), have open leniency gardens on the roof or viewing terrace. Most are in the Old Town area, e.g. at Plac Kolegiacki (on the hotel roof) or in Galeria MM.

The terraces in Galeria MM have a view of Aleje Marcinkowskiego and overlook e.g. the National Museum in Poznań and the towers of the Royal Castle in Poznań.

Path in the treetops

A lot of my friends think that Poznań is practically flat. And this is not quite true. Poznań is not so much flat as it no longer has many hills (it has been partially flattened). However, in places such as the area around Lake Malta (the New Zoo), the terrain has retained a more natural look, with the result that there are several small hills and basins. Most of these are covered with forest. One such place is the so-called Szklarka Valley. Szklarka is a watercourse flowing practically in the vicinity of the car park at the New Zoo.

ścieżka w koronach drzew nad Szklarką w Poznaniu
ścieżka w koronach drzew nad Szklarką w Poznaniu

Models of old Poznań

In the basement of the Franciscan monastery on Góra Przemysła, you will find a place with a large number of models depicting old Poznań. There, you can see 17th-century Poznań together with its inhabitants.

Fraunzhkan Church

The entrance is from Ludgardy Street about 150 m from the Poznań Town Hall. This attraction is ideal for families with children.

City tours by vintage buses and trams

During the holiday and holiday period (roughly from mid-April to October), tourist buses and trams run through Poznań. Among them, the renovated and modernised former horse-drawn tram or Jelcz (known as the Cucumber) is particularly noteworthy.

Sometimes you can also visit the small transport museum located in the depot on Głogowska Street as part of a tour.

Jelcz 043 - Autobus ogórek

The Poznan Lakes Trail – Leisure without leaving the city

There are many bodies of water around Poznań and in the city itself. They are of different sizes and sometimes serve different purposes. One of them is recreation. For example, in the city you can go to the beach at the lake as part of your relaxation:

  • Rusalka,
  • Malta,
  • Strzeszynek,
  • Lake Kierskie (the largest natural lake),
  • and if you’re crazy, Swarzędz is also easy to get to

Another question is whether it is possible to swim in these lakes. Because in some of them you can only swim during the season when the sanitary authorities give permission.

Kiekrz i Jezioro Kierskie – Poznańskie jeziora
Kiekrz and Lake Kierskie – Poznan Lakes

I have also read that there are more lakes in Greater Poland than in Masuria, but they are much smaller and not as impressive.

Get to the zoo on the narrow-gauge railway

Poznań is one of the few cities to have a narrow-gauge railway which takes you to the Zoo. One of the largest in Poland, by the way.

City viewpoints – see the city from a different perspective

Like many cities, Poznan has vantage points from which most of the city can be seen. At the moment, only the observation tower at the Royal Castle is accessible.

Muzeum Sztuk Użytkowych w zamku królewskim w Poznaniu

Another vantage point is the observation tower on Szachtach (in Szachtachty Park).

Viewing tower on Szachty
Viewing tower on Szachty

Terrace in Galeria MM overlooking Wolności Square and Aleje Marcinkowskie.

kawiarnia na dachu mm
Taras in Galerii MM

In a few years’ time, one of the floors of the Collegium Altum of the Poznań University of Economics is to be open to tourists again.

There is also quite a good view from Alf na Św. Marcinie (e.g. from the top floor of the hotel).

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