Open six days of the week (the museum is closed on Tuesdays), the Warsaw Rising Museum in Poland is a living tribute to the residents of the city who fought and even died for the capital to be free. Located in the heart of the city, the museum contains an enormous number of artifacts from the uprising.
Although the museum was dreamed up in 1983, it wasn’t until 2004 that the doors to the museum actually opened. The museum’s first day was July 31st, the 60th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising. Over 400,000 visitors check out the museum on an annual basis. It is located in the Wola District.
The museum focuses on two different sections of permanent exhibits.
The first section of the museum focuses on the actual fighting itself, and how the citizens of Warsaw went on with their everyday lives during that time. With exhibits focusing on the ways that regular people worked to keep the terror of the occupation of the city in the background, it’s a harrowing view of what daily life was like for the many men, women, and children literally caught in the crossfire.
The exhibition also goes into detail about how the international situation affected the Warsaw Rising, as well as what happened in the years after the war with the ensuing Communist regime change and the fate of the PRL (People’s Republic of Poland) insurgents. This section showcases over 800 items, with more than 1500 photos, sound and film recordings, all of them showing the days just prior to the start of the Warsaw Uprising. The flow of the museum leads guests through the uprising and follows the Insurgents after the war ends as well.
The second section of the museum showcases the story of the airdrops that were done by the Allies. Featured in this portion is a to scale replica of a bomber that would have been flown during that time, a Liberator B-24J. The majority of the exhibition focuses on the Germans and German Allies, using official text documents from that time period (as well as more private letters and notes) to track them from August to September 1944. There are even eye witness accounts that had been previously recorded that play in an attached hall.
Also, in this area of the museum is a movie theater, which shows panoramic films about the Warsaw Rising. There is also an area of the museum that hosts temporary exhibitions, which is located in the mezzanine gallery. Guests should make sure to climb the Museum Tower before leaving, which allows for a spectacular view of Freedom Park as well as the entire city of Warsaw.
Tickets can be purchased until half an hour prior to the museum closing. No admission will be charged on Sundays. Audio guides can be rented for those who want a little more structure while visiting the museum. They can be rented for a small fee, and are offered in English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, and Russian.
The Warsaw Rising Museum is the perfect place to bring a field trip. The museum seeks to use visual aids to help everyone understand this important part of local history better. This can be especially effective with children, who are actively learning about the material that is presented in the museum.
Tickets can be purchased in advance by contacting the staff at the museum. Tour guides can be arranged that way, as well. Teachers who would prefer to take their classrooms in by themselves are encouraged to check out a guide from the front desk, as they are offered in over twenty different languages and can help direct a tour.
Although reservations are not required, it is strongly encouraged that teachers contact the museum prior to a visit to schedule a good time to come. The museum will take about two hours to see from start to finish, and it is highly recommended that there is one adult chaperone present for every ten children. This is especially important for younger students.
Dining and Shopping
The museum is home to a small, 1940s themed cafe with a variety of options. Also, located just at the entrance of the Warsaw Rising Museum, is a small gift shop. Audio guides are available for purchase here, as well as a small selection of souvenir items that help support the continued existence of the museum. Although not a large gift shop, the offerings are tasteful considering the subject material.
Warsaw Rising Museum, Grzybowska 79, Warsaw 00-844, Poland