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25 Interesting facts about Poland

25 Interesting facts about Poland

Are you looking for facts about Poland? Here’s a list of 25 interesting facts about Poland plus some more general Poland facts such as total population, biggest lake, biggest mountain, type of government, currency, biggest cities etc. 

To make this even more fun, I want to challenge you. Which of these Poland facts did you already know about before reading? Share your result in the comment section at the bottom of this article!

1. Home to the world’s largest Castle

Want to visit the world’s largest castle? Malbork Castle is located in the northern part of Poland, and stretches over a huge area – 143,591 square meters, which makes Malbork Castle the largest castle in the world!

MALBORK CASTLE

2. At least 90% of Poles have completed secondary school

Poland is, in general, a very well-educated country and at least 90% of the total population have completed secondary school!

3. Poland has won the most “Strongest man in the world” titles

They say Polish Women are the most beautiful in the world. But the Polish men can also pride themselves as strong as the most titles “Strongest man in the world” has been won by Polish men.

4. First constitution in Europe

Another thing the Poles can pride themselves on is the fact that they introduced the first constitution in Europe, and second worldwide. The Polish constitution was adopted on the 3 May 1791, by the Sejm of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

5. Home to about 800 European Bisons

In one of the last and largest primeval forests who used to stretch along the European plain, you’ll find the biggest and heaviest land animal in Europe – The European Bison. Poland is home to around 800 European Bisons.

One of the unique facts about Poland!

european bison - animal in poland

Photo: Shutterstock

6. Famous Polish Inventions

Several Polish inventions have helped the world to become a better place. Some examples of Polish inventions are the Commodore 64 (Jack Tramiel, born in Lodz), Kerosene Lamp, the bagel, the bulletproof vest, and the walkie-talkie just to mention a few!

7. At the age of 18, you’ll start to celebrate your name day instead of birthday

Birthdays are becoming more and more popular. However, your name day is still the most important day. And apparently many Poles especially the elder ones think that you should only celebrate your name day after turning 18. Before that, you usually celebrate your birthday or both.

8. Geographically, Poland is not actually in Eastern Europe – it is in fact in the very center of Europe

Culturally it’s more like Western Europe, and the location is Central Europe, but due to a political past with Russia, many have and still are considering Poland to be a part of Eastern Europe. But in fact, the country is in the very center of Europe.

9. Only in Poland can you go to Hel(l) and back again in a day

One of the funnier Poland facts on this list, and not so much a fact as the other points, but this one is too funny to not mention. There’s a peninsula called Hel, and there’s a saying that “only in Poland can you go to Hell and back again in a day”.

hel island - poland facts

10. The Polish alphabet consists of 32 letters

The English alphabet has 26 letters, but the Polish alphabet has some more letters. 32 in total. The Polish language is considered to be one of the hardest languages to learn, especially when it comes to pronunciation for non-natives.

11. Polish-born astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus was the first person to propose that the earth was not the center of the universe

facts about poland - nikolaus copernicus

12. Nearly 35 % of all polish people live abroad

Did you know that Polish diaspora is the largest in the world? There are almost 40 million Poles living in Poland, but there are about 20 million Poles living abroad!

Definitely one of the most interesting facts about Poland

13. Poland is the world’s biggest amber exporter

Amber is fossilized tree resin that have been admired for its color and beauty for centuries. Did you know that Poland is the world’s biggest exporter of Amber?

14. Polish Vodka is considered to be one of the best

You have probably heard about Russian vodka, but Polish vodka is also high-quality and you can find some of the best vodkas here!

15. Poland has been invaded and fought for a freedom 43 times between 1600-1945

One of the interesting facts about Poland which is sad and reminds of a brutal history and attacks against the country. But to bring something positive out of it, even though the Poles have been invaded, they still stand strong and keep their culture and traditions alive.

10 x Fun facts about Poland and the Poles

  1. A minimum of 100 million pączki are consumed every year on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday
  2. Kissing a woman’s hand is still a common gentleman practice
  3. Watching Home Alone is a Christmas tradition
  4. Every year at the end of winter a human-sized doll is made and drown to mark the beginning of spring. The polish tradition is known as Marzanna. 
  5. People of Polish descent have won 17 noble prizes, including four for peace and five for literature
  6. Wearing a hat inside is considered rude
  7. Traditional Polish Last Names Change Depending on the Sex
  8. The cost of a Big Mac at Mcdonald’s is one of the lowest prices in the world
  9. Poles marry the youngest among all European Union.
  10. They put ketchup or tomato sauce on their pizza at the table
polish pastry

A minimum of 100 million pączki are consumed every year on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday

General Poland Facts

Below are some general info such as total population, land area, biggest lake, highest mountain and other general facts about Poland that might be interesting to know.

  • Total Population: 38,108,519
  • Highest Mountain: Rysy – 2,499 meters above the sea
  • Land area: 312,679 km2
  • Biggest Lake:Śniardwy 113.8 km2
  • National Day: 11 November.
  • Government: Unitary semi-presidential republic
  • Primary minister: Mateusz Morawiecki
  • Currency: Polish Zloty (PLN)
  • Official language: Polish.
  • Official Website: Poland.pl
  • Member of EU: Since 2004.
  • Member of Nato: Yes.
  • National song: “Mazurek Dąbrowskiego”
  • Time zone: CET (UTC +1), summertime, CEST (UTC +2)
  • Country Number/Prefix: +48
  • Country Code: PL
  • Capital: Warsaw
warsaw - capital of poland

Warsaw – The Capital

Biggest Cities

If you’re looking for facts about Poland, it might also be interesting to know which the biggest cities are.

  • Warsaw
  • Krakow
  • Lodz
  • Wroclaw
  • Poznan
  • Gdansk
  • Szczecin
  • Bydgoszcz
  • Lublin
  • Katowice

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Greg

Wednesday 9th of January 2019

Very good summary!

Ian anderson

Saturday 8th of September 2018

I have been to Gdansk and loved it.

Emil

Friday 15th of June 2018

#7 is not true. It is an old tradition. Now only some people celebrate name day.

matamatipl

Friday 24th of August 2018

agree

Radek

Wednesday 13th of June 2018

A great summary. I can see that you really liked Poland!

PS. Next time in Poland, check out Tuchola Forest area :) It's the largest UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in Poland, which consist: 1 National Park, 4 Landscape Parks, and 25 other nature reserves.

PPS. Historical sources indicate that the "vodka culture" came from Poland to Russia - not the opposite ;).

Oski

Wednesday 13th of June 2018

First wódka destilery was in Poland Gdansk 1505.