Warsaw/Western Centre

The area to the west of Warsaw/Śródmieście, consisting of the districts of Wola, Ochota and Żoliborz contains many parts of the historic core of Warsaw. While not as densely packed with touristic points of interest as Śródmieście, it is still full of interesting places to visit and discover.


The Wola district in dark red.
Ochota on the map of Warsaw
Żoliborz highlighted in dark red.

Wola is immediately to the west of Śródmieście and blends seamlessly with it, the border between them being the Jana Pawła II Avenue.

Wola has been rapidly changing from a former industrial area into a prime business district with office buildings, and modern upscale residential highrises as well. For tourists, it is important to know that Wola holds large parts of the area covered by Warsaw Ghetto during the Second World War, and many important places of remembrance can be found there. It also hold Warsaw's most important necropolis, the Powązki, and the Warsaw Rising Museum.

The word wola means "will" in Polish, referring to the fact that the royal elections (yes, Poland's noblemen used to elect their kings, they were not automatically hereditary) took place there over the vast expanses of open spaces it once encompassed.

Ochota is a district of Warsaw. The name means "willingness" or "fancy". It is a relatively small (by area), traditionally residential district. Ochota is further divided into Filtry, Rakowiec, Szczęśliwice and Stara Ochota (Old Ochota), which covers the traditional area of the district.

Żoliborz has traditionally been the intelligentsia district of Warsaw. It is further divided into Stary Żoliborz, Sady Żoliborskie and Marymont-Potok.

Get in




Get around

By tram

Trams run along Aleja Solidarności and Aleje Jerozolimskie (at the southern border of the district), and between them through Towarowa. Tram service along Prosta/Kasprzaka is suspended due to Metro construction, the entire street is a big construction site. Trams 8, 22 and 24 will take you from the centre and the Dworzec Centralny (railway station) to the Rising Museum, 22 also to the Powązki cemetery.

Consult those official tram network maps and schemas for up-to-date information and tram stops: ,

On foot

For the areas closer to the city centre, walking is a reasonable choice and the sights along the way are worth it (especially if you are heading into Chłodna from Plac Bankowy, or walking along Grzybowska). You can even endavour to walk as far as the Warsaw Rising Museum.

Otherwise, Wola becomes a sprawling district with little interest to the tourist beyond specific points of interest. You may walk, but you would be better advised to take advantage of the public transportation.


Museums in Wola

Powązki Cemetery (Cmentarz Powązkowski)

Roman Catholic Cemetery (Cmentarz Rzymskokatolicki)

Jewish Cemetery (Cmentarz Żydowski)

Calvinist Cemetery (Cmentarz Ewangelicko-Reformowany)

Lutheran Cemetery (Cmentarz Ewangelicko-AugsburskiCmentarz Ewangelicko-Reformowany)

Powązki Communal Cemetery (Cmentarz Komunalny - Powązki), previously: Military Cemetery (Cmentarz Wojskowy)

In Ochota

A significant part of the district's area is used by the Warsaw Waterworks (Filtry Lindleya)

In Żoliborz





Even in warm weather, you can go skiing in Park Szczęśliwicki






Wine tasting


Clubs and bars


You will find many more accommodation options in the neighbouring district of Śródmieście. Accommodations in Ochota are also convenient for visiting Wola.






This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Thursday, April 16, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.