An empty view of Piotrkowska Street in Lodz, Poland

An insider's guide to visiting Lodz, Poland

Ania James

Contributing writer

Lodz is one of the biggest cities in Poland, with more than 700,000 inhabitants. Since the 19th century, Lodz has always been an important industrial textile centre, often called the Polish Manchester, because of its many factories and its location on the crossroad of important European trade and transport routes.

From World War II until about 20 years ago, Lodz was Poland's most miserable and grey city. Now the city has changed. Old brick factories have become home to new hotels, museums and lofts. And buildings like the old power station are now the Art and Science Centre with a Planetarium and a viewing platform in one of the chimneys.

White building of an old closed textile factory, Lodz, Poland

The city of four cultures

Lodz is considered the city of four cultures: Polish, Jewish, Russian and German. These four nations build Lodz in the 19th century and have lived together ever since, creating a fascinating culture with their customs and traditions. Lodz was also known as one of the most important Jewish centres in Europe before World War II.

Things to do in Lodz

Lodz isn't just for tourists... it's for everyone. One of the coolest things about Lodz is that there is nothing just for tourists. Lodz is authentic. Every attraction which is in Lodz is a place where locals go.

Giant Manufaktura sign in Lodz
Outside in Manufaktura, Lodz


The most famous entertainment and shopping centre located in a complex of old factory buildings.

Piotrkowska street

The longest commercial shopping street in Lodz with many restaurants, pubs and shops. It is a street where locals do the celebration pub crawl with their friends, after graduation or a promotion.

The problem is that Piotrkowska is very long (4 km long) and some internal spaces off Piotrkowska have a few pubs clustered under one address. So, if you have a drink in each of them, you won't go far. However, if you have problems with finding your balance on your way, a bicycle rikshaw will happily escort you to another pub or home.

Have lunch at a restaurant in OFF Piotrkowska street

OFF Piotrkowska It is a place where people who work in fashion, design or other other creative fields hang out. It's probably currently the most trendy place to be in the whole of Poland. This is where you will find in quirky cafes, restaurants, exhibition spaces, art galleries and showrooms

Get outdoors

If you want some space and time on your own, have for a picnic at one of many parks in Lodz or head on a rented bicycle to Arturowek , Europe's biggest forest within a city's limits.

Blooming blue squill in the Klepacz park in city of Lodz, Poland

Discover the art and culture in Lodz

Lodz has one of the best art scenes in Poland and is the home of the Lodz Film School which educated artists like Roman Polanski, Andrzej Wajda, Krzysztof Kieslowski and more. So, if you want to see what shaped the minds of the great Polish directors, just take a long stroll through the streets of the city.

Lodz also has a great Philharmonic Orchestra which performs at least once a week during concert season. You can find many interesting museums in Lodz, including the Contemporary Art Museum, Factory Museum and more.

An art installation in Lodz
Piotrkowska - Lodz city's main street during the annual Festival of Light.

Where to stay in Lodz

Lodz is designed on a rigid grid system, with the main streets running north to south and east to west. The city's axis is Piotrkowska street, and any road off of Piotrkowska or parallel to it would be the best place to stay in the city. Piotrkowska itself can be a bit too loud for a hotel.

Getting around Lodz

The rigid grid makes it easy to navigate the city, plus it's very easy to rent a city bike or a scooter to commute in Lodz. And if you don't want to walk or cycle, Lodz has great public transport build-up from trams and buses.

Freedom Square and pink flowers in Lodz, Poland

I love Lodz not only because it's my home town but mostly because it has real character. From it's roots as an ugly industrial town, it's now one of the trendiest places in Poland to visit. I hope to see you somewhere on Piotrkowska Street sometime soon.

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Ania James

Author - Ania James

Ania is a restless soul, rule breaker and mother. She is an explorer at heart, and has passed this passion on to her children. They enjoy the world together.

Last Updated 3 October 2021

 Rynek square with small colorful houses and old Town Hall in Poznan, Poland


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