Gdańsk & Pomerania

The 14th-century cathedral is the most important historic sight in town. Though badly damaged in 1945, it has been rebuilt close to its original form. For such a massive building, it has a surprisingly light-filled interior, illuminated by its extremely tall and narrow windows of beautifully patterned stained glass. Its colossal two conjoined towers occupy the whole width of the building, and the facade is a striking composition of windows placed haphazardly.

No, you haven’t had too much vodka, those columns on the right side of the nave really are leaning. But don’t worry, you don’t have to rush out to avoid being crushed – they’ve been that way since the 16th century. Still, the impression they create is slightly unnerving.

Old fittings include three 16th-century triptychs and a unique Gothic wooden chandelier (1523) in the central nave. There are some even older objects, such as the bronze baptismal font (1355) featuring scenes of Christ’s life; a 4m-high, seven-armed candelabrum (1327); and the stalls in the chancel (1340). The 20th-century stained glass is striking on sunny days and another modern feature in the shape of a monument celebrating 1000 years of Polish Catholicism stands outside.

Despite the time posted at the door (aimed more at huge, disruptive German tour groups), you can actually wander in whenever you like. The views from the tower are just sweeping enough to warrant the admission charged.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Gdańsk & Pomerania attractions

1. History Museum

0.06 MILES

Housed in an Empire-style merchant’s house called the Braunschweig Palace, the sister institution to the Polish Arms Museum has a neatly presented…

2. Town Hall

0.08 MILES

The Town Hall, just east of the cathedral, is a neo-Gothic structure designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel and erected by Ernst Friedrich Zwirner (who also…

3. Lontowa Tower

0.12 MILES

Sometimes erroneously known as the 'powder tower', this tower is a 15th-century survivor from the original city walls. It's currently for sale if you're…

4. Polish Arms Museum

0.14 MILES

This large museum isn’t as dull as you might expect and is well worth a look if you’ve time on your hands. The displays cover the history of weaponry…

5. Amber Museum

0.32 MILES

Kołobrzeg's Amber Museum displays several kilos of prehistoric tree sap in a gleaming white, 21st-century space. It's not a patch on the Malbork or Gdańsk…

6. Lighthouse

1.09 MILES

To the west of the beach stands the lighthouse, which you can climb for panoramic views. There's a small mineral museum in the base.