Most people don’t think of luxurious seaside resorts when they think of Poland, but then again, most people haven’t heard of Sopot. This pretty seaside town has been attracting Eastern Europe’s elite for nearly two centuries, and this charming beach community still draws large, diverse crowds during the summer months. Located on the calm Bay of Gdańsk, Sopot provides a bit of peace, luxury and beauty, and it’s one of the most beloved vacation towns in Poland. So when I recently had the chance to spend a warm summer weekend in Sopot, I jumped at the opportunity.
As I journeyed from Krakow to the scenic spa town of Sopot, I pulled up my HotelTonight app on my phone and booked a great last-minute hotel in Sopot. Thanks to HotelTonight, I am always prepared for spontaneous getaways, because I always know I’ll be able to find fantastic last-minute accommodations on HotelTonight. As soon as I arrived in Sopot, I felt a dreamy wave of calm rush over me. I immediately knew why this pretty coastal town was so popular among locals and tourists alike. It’s elegant yet easygoing all at once, and I couldn’t wait to see what Sopot had in store for me.
It’s no surprise that the main attraction in Sopot is the beach. Poland isn’t typically known for their beach resort towns, but I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of Sopot’s beach. Its sand was white and fine, and the long, wide beach never felt crowded. The water was a bit cooler than the water at beaches in Spain or Greece, but the beach itself was just as beautiful as any you’d find in other major European beach towns. Since I was visiting Sopot near the end of summer, the weather was warm and the sun was shining bright, so the cool water of the Bay of Gdańsk felt refreshing. I think this beach would be beautiful year-round, even if the weather isn’t warm enough to go for a dip in the water. The beach is picturesque, and the boardwalk is lined with great restaurants, shops, and luxury hotels.
Sopot’s best-known landmark is its pier, which is the longest wooden pier in all of Europe. At over half-a-kilometer long, this pier is the pride of Sopot, and it’s also a great spot for an afternoon stroll, or for a stroll at any point of the day, really. It was on this pier that I started falling in love with Sopot, since there’s a sense of peace and beauty that far out in the water that you simply can’t get on land. Plus, from the pier you have a stunning view of the town of Sopot and the surrounding towns, so I would definitely recommend taking a stroll on the pier when you visit Sopot.
If you want to find the hub of energy and excitement in Sopot, you definitely need to walk down Monte Cassino Street (or “Monciak,” as the locals call it). This pedestrian street is ground zero for fun and excitement in Sopot, as this street is full of great restaurants, shops, and bars. You’ll find plenty of family-friendly activities on this street, but if you want to enjoy some Polish nightlife while in Sopot, this is the street you’ll want to explore after dark. There are a number of hip bars and nightclubs on Monte Cassino, as well as cute cafes and shops, which is why this street is always lively no matter the time of day.
On the other side of the main road is Aleja Niepodleglości, also known as Independence Avenue. As you continue down this street, you will notice that the town starts to look less like a ritzy beach town and more like an actual residential town. There may not be too much for tourists to see in Upper Sopot, but I loved exploring this small neighborhood because it gave me a great feel for what life is really like for locals in this pretty Polish town. Upper Sopot boasts beautiful old villas and open natural spaces, and strolling through this neighborhood made me understand just why Sopot locals love their city so much.
I didn’t know quite what to expect from Sopot, Poland, as I hadn’t heard much about the town before embarking on my quick weekend getaway. However, it didn’t take me long to fall in love with Sopot, though, because this beautiful Polish beach town was full of charm, elegance and natural beauty. As I left Sopot and headed back to Krakow, I thought about how lucky I was that HotelTonight makes it so easy to plan last-minute trips. Without HotelTonight, I probably wouldn’t have been able to make my Sopot getaway possible, and then I would have missed out on one of my most surprising and enjoyable weekends of that summer.