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Poland Vacation Itinerary: Top 5 Day Trips from Lublin 

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4 months ago

In my opinion, Lublin is the ideal base for a Poland vacation itinerary. The town itself is one of Europe’s best kept secrets: a beautiful old town, an incredible array of historic sites and very low prices!

Whether you are on a longer Eastern Europe backpacking trip, a quick tour of Poland or looking for a unique weekend escape from London, Lublin has something for everyone!  

But if I’m being honest, my favorite part of Lublin is the location. I always recommend people to set aside time to explore the southeast of Poland: picturesque towns, historic World War II sites and some beautiful rolling hills.

lublin old town
The beautiful Old Town of Lublin

Take advantage of Lublin on your next tour of Eastern Europe, stay a few days and visit some of the best sites in Poland!  

Getting around Poland

Renting a car is the best way to travel in Poland and some of the small towns on this list are not accessible by public transport.

For those visiting Poland from across Europe, your European SIM cards will likely work in Poland. However, if you are coming from outside of the EU, you will want to make sure you have data connectivity for all your Google Maps needs. If you have a British SIM card, you’ll want to check that you can roam without extra charges in Poland.

A local SIM can be arranged on the ground in Poland, but I prefer to have an eSIM ready to go from the moment I land. In my opinion, Airalo is by far the easiest eSIM provider.

Top day trips from Lublin, Poland

Once your rental car is organised, it’s time to hit the road. Here are my top day trips from Lublin.

sunflowers in poland
The landscapes of the Polish countryside are always a star attraction on any Poland vacation itinerary

1. Kazimierz Dolny

Kazimierz Dolny is approximately 1 hour by car from Lublin. Kazimierz Dolny is also only about 2 hours by car from Warsaw and is also one of our top day trips from Warsaw.

art gallery in kazimierz dolny, the closet town for a day trip from lublin, poland
Kazimierz Dolny is full of little art galleries

Colloquially known as the artist’s town, Kazimierz Dolny is a true gem in the Lublin region. 

Steeped in history, Kazimierz Dolny is a picturesque town along the Vistula River, best known for its well-preserved Renaissance architecture, small boutique art galleries and stunning landscapes. For those looking for unique souvenirs from Poland, many local painters have galleries where you can see the artists at work!  

main market square in kazimierz dolny, poland
The main square in Kazimierz Dolny is a hub of activity, street vendors and artists

For the best views over Kazimierz Dolny and the river, head up to the stunning Three Crosses Hill. 

Whether you’re on a Holocaust trip to Poland or simply interested in unique sites, I would recommend visiting the Jewish Cemetery in Kazimierz Dolny (Cmentarz Żydowski). While most Jewish cemeteries in Poland were destroyed during the Holocaust, in Kazimierz Dolny the broken gravestones were raised and joined together in the form of a cracked ‘Wailing Wall’.

The Jewish Cemetery in Kazimierz Dolny. The ‘Wailing Wall’ memorial reminded me of the newer memorial at Babi Yar (in Ukraine).

Set on an atmospheric hilltop and surrounded by tall trees, this memorial offers an extremely powerful symbol of the tragic history of Polish Jews.  

2. Sobibor and Włodawa

Sobibor and Wlodowa are approximately 1.5 hour by car from Lublin.

Even if you have visited Auschwitz and Majdanek, it’s hard to prepare for Sobibor. As an extermination camp deep in the Polish woods, Sobibor solely existed for gassing Jews in World War II. This camp saw about 250,000 Jews murdered, most only surviving a few minutes after their arrival.  

sobibor sign extermination camp

The camp itself was destroyed by the Germans. However, a brand-new museum takes visitors through the camp, with recently excavated artefacts and survivor testimony (there were only 58 survivors).  

jewish keys from holocaust at sobibor
A powerful exhibit from archaeologically excavated remains at Sobibor. The Germans had hidden the truth from the Jews, telling them they were being evacuated or relocated – leading many to bring their keys with them.

While there are no shortage of Holocaust sites in Poland, I am honestly baffled how Sobibor is often skipped on Poland Holocaust tours. But if you are spending a few days in Lublin, it really is an easy (and scenic) drive.

‘Escape from Sobibor’ is a true story and one of my favorite Holocaust films. Don’t let the grainy 1980s quality put you off – this film was co-directed by a Sobibor survivor!  

Włodawa synagogue, poland
The grand Baroque architecture of the Włodawa synagogue, a short stop from Sobibor.

About 10 minutes before Sobibor on the road from Lublin, you will pass the pretty town of Włodawa. I would recommend a short stop to visit the Włodawa synagogue, a grand Baroque structure with a surviving decorated Ark. 

3. Zamosc

Zamosc is approximately 1.5 hours by car from Lublin.

Colorful architecture of Zamosc, Poland

I’ll be honest: If you have the time, try to spend at least one night in Zamosc.  

Often referred to as the “Pearl of the Renaissance“, Zamosc is a real highlight of visiting Poland. Zamosc’s remarkably well-preserved Renaissance architecture makes the town very worthy of any Poland vacation itinerary.  

unesco heritage listed zamosc, a must-visit site on any poland vacation itinerary

The entire Old Town of Zamosc is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and wandering through its cobbled streets feels like stepping back in time. Explore the grand Market Square, visit the stunning Zamosc Cathedral. Don’t forget to take a leisurely stroll along the town’s historic fortifications!

zamosc synagogue
The Renaissance style Zamosc Synagogue

I would also recommend stopping past the Zamosc synagogue. This was one of the few Sephardi Jewish congregations in pre-Holocaust Poland. The synagogue building is decorated with black-and-white photos, a living memorial to those murdered.  

The beautiful interior of Zamosc syangogue

If you are lucky enough to spend the night in Zamosc, don’t miss out on having dinner in the main market square. The restaurant menus may be similar, but the evening atmosphere is pure magic.

For budget travelers in Poland, Zamosc is served by regular FlixBus services from Lublin (1.5 hours) and Warsaw (about 4 hours)  

4. Belzec

Belzec is approximately 1.5 hours by car from Lublin.

Belzec is the third deadliest extermination camp of the Holocaust, after Auschwitz and Treblinka.

belzec memorial site
The names of towns which were completely rid of Jews surround the main monument.

Approximately 500,000 Jews were murdered here. Only 7 Jews survived from this extermination camp.

Like Sobibor, Belzec has a powerful new museum which takes visitors through the tragic history of the site.  

belzec extermination camp piles of shoes
The shoes of victims of the extermination camp.

The main memorial at Belzec is one of the most powerful in Poland. A ‘death road’ descends into the memorial, symbolizing the path Jews would have taken into the gas chambers. As the walls get higher, for a brief moment, you can experience that inability to escape.   

belzec extermination camp memorial
The ‘death road’ descent into the memorial of Belzec

If you are interested in learning more about the history of Polish Jews, don’t miss my guide to the top 10 Jewish sites in Warsaw!

5. Lancut

Lancut is approximately 1 hour 50 minutes by car from Lublin.

Welcome to one of my favorite small towns in Poland.

The grand castle

For a tiny town, Lancut punches above its weight. The Castle here is the star attraction, a beautiful example of Polish Neo-baroque architecture with some elaborate gardens.  

hand-painted panels in Lancut synagogue
The interior of the Synagogue – a unique surviving example of Polish Jewish design.

With a unique Jewish history, you do not want to miss the Lancut Synagogue. Built in 1761, it is one of a handful of synagogues to survive the Holocaust and the interior walls are a magnificent example of Jewish Polish artwork.  

interior of lancut synagogue
interior detail of the Synagogue

If you are on an extended road trip, for example from Lublin to Rzeszow, Lancut makes for an easy stop on the way to Rzeszow (only about 20 minutes by train or car). Compared to many of these small towns, Rseszow offers excellent hotel options.

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