We spent a few days in Poznań. My impressions? I think I could live there. It is not so claustrophobic as Krakow. The Old Town is prettier than Krakow`s or Warsaw`s. Driving through Poznan is quick, I could park practically in the Old Town, which is impossible in Krakow.
The old architecture beyond The Old Town is impressive. Sort of "heavy and solid" - a visible influence of German occupation during a century long partitions.
The two zoos are attractive sites and the Greenhouses are just stunning. The National Gallery is enormous, packed with fine art.
I had probably never seen so richly decorated churches as in Poznań. Incredible.
What is worse than in Krakow or Warsaw? Old, obsolete play grounds for kids prove that Poznań is really backward!!! Also their Royal Castle is pathetic.
We spent a few days in Poznań. My impressions? I think I could live there. It is not so claustrophobic as Krakow. The Old Town is prettier than Krakow`s or Warsaw`s. Driving through Poznan is quick, I could park in a very close vicinity of the Old Town, which is practically impossible in Krakow.
I like Poznan very much too and share most of your impressions. Nonetheless I think that the Old Town of your old good Kraków beats all the old towns in Poland. As to 'wher I could live'. If I was to live in a 'dowtown' city again that would be back to Warsaw of course, but if I had to choose something else that would be Sopot.
Nice old discussion. I have so much sweet old memories of Poznań, that it is hard for me to say anything negative of that Polish city. Even during the Communist period it fits description Bonobo gave it in September 2009. I liked the mix of good Polish and German elements. I am over the past, and therefor actually liked the Prussian, heavy, monumental buildings, boulevards, castles and structures. The charm of Poznań is exactly that historical mix of Polish, German and other elements. I loved my grandparents apartment although it was modest, small and very old fashionate. I loved the street they lived in, Ulica Mickiewicza. When I went out in the morning as a small boy to go to the Sam ('Socialist supermarket') to buy these delicious little Polish Chleb; Bułki, fresh milk (which had to be cooked before it could be consumed), Jajka (eggs), Szynka, chrzan (delicious on meat. I stil use it in Holland, it is the only Polish element in my present culinairy life) and the very tasty products of the Bar mleczny. Very nice cheesecakes and pancakes. We (my sister and I) loved it as kids.
I also loved the little Zoo in our neighbourhood, with the old Indian elephant. We certainly loved the Polish cinema. We went to the cinema a lot as children during the seventees. I loved the Old town of Poznań to, with the market hall buildings in the centre of the old market square, with it's wonderful old buildings, restaurants, pubs and art galleries (if my memories are correct).
I remember the Gothic, Romanesque and very rich Baroque or Rococo churches too, the Opera house, the large bridge over the railways, the large boulevards that crossed the city for many kilometers. We loved to visit our uncles and aunts houses and to meet our nieces who lived in a small private wooden house in a green area with vegetable gardens.
Just walking in the appartment blok of my grandparents or walking the streets of Poznań was already exiting enough for our little ones. Poznań was the first large city we knew before we even knew the larger Belgian and Dutch cities in our environment. The first city with day and night traffic. I remember hearing the sounds of night traffic when I lay in bed in that period. I heard the metal, skreeking, sounds of the trams that past by a few crossings away, I heard the busses and taxi's and private cars that drove by. I didn't hear that back then in the small provincial coastal town I lived in back then in the Netherlands. Poznań to us kids was a magic world in another country, with another language, other people, another system, another mentality and etc.
But even though it was Communist or 'Socialist' it was a Modern city, with old fashionate elements. I also remember the Citadel, the monument with the crosses, the large state hotels, Hotel Orbis Poznań, and the other two state hotels of Orbis, and the poznańskiej Arenie shown on an image on a thread Bo posted over here.