Sopot – romantic, crowded and charming.
Sopot, not a big city, situated between Gdansk and Gdynia. On one side surrounded by the waters of the Baltic Bay and from the other by the Tricity Landscape Park. For some group of people, it is the most romantic city in Poland, for others the destination for health treatments, the rest come here to relax and to have fun.
Sopot is a health sea resort. Every year people from all over Poland come here to have health treatments and drink special salt brine and the iodine water from the deep ground.
Sopot is a city with rich history with its characteristic symbol of Poland – the pier. This pier is a symbol of Sopot as well as the longest such object in Europe. It was built Between XIX /XX c. The walking section is over half kilometre long, with its 450 metres leading into the Baltic bay waters. Gradually renovated and modernised, today the pier is proud to have a modern marina, where luxurious yachts and boats can come. Pier is Sopot is the place for strolls and relaxation. You can have a rest on one of the benches, direct Your face towards the sun, listen to the waves and the birds singing, to feel the true happiness.
The pier in Sopot with modern marina, fot. Pomorskie.Travel
Near the pier there are two historical parks – the Northern Spa and the Southern Spa. We can find over 60 different kinds of trees and plants under protection. There is a recreation park, small football pitch, picturesque walking paths and the cycling paths. In the southern Spa there are also so called inhalation mushrooms, where You can try the healthy salt brine.
Sopot - unobvious attractions
Sopot is also the place with a big number of walking paths along the sea shore, where we can walk (or cycle or use a pedicab or roller skaters) towards Gdynia or Gdansk. Along the walking paths there are plenty of bigger and smaller restaurants, serving mainly fish. There are also luxurious hotels along, including almost 100 years old Grand Hotel and spa and health facilities. There is also a Balneological Hospital which offers swimming in salt brine pools and the former lighthouse, from which there is a beautiful view to the pier, beach and the Baltic Bay.
Legendary Grand Hotel, fot. mat. Sofitel Grand Sopot
The central part of the spa is a pedestrian street called The Heroes of Monte Cassino. This is the place where are most of cafes, restaurants , clubs and the Chamber Stage of the Cost Theatre and characteristic due to its architecture Crooked House. Walking down the city towards South – West we reach the forested part of Sopot with the famous Forest Opera. It is an amphitheatre, which since 1909 is one of the most important point on the concert map of Poland. There are shows, festivals and concerts organised here till today.
Along the Haffner Street (the city founder, by the way), there are the most imposing houses and mansions in Sopot and the archaeological open air museum – “Grodzisko” in Sopot. It is something for the history lovers due to the fact that this was the place where the first settlement was located at VIII c.
Sopot is full of life all year long. It is worth coming here during the summer, when the streets are all the time crowded, as well as in the Winter time, when You can only hear the waves and the seagulls…
The Forest Opera in Sopot, center of artistic life in the resort
The first notions of a pier being created in Sopot derive from 18th Century and it was used for transportation purposes by the Russians during their siege of Gdańsk. The real pier (molo), however, was constructed for the enjoyment of guests at the beginning of the 19th Century.
The Pier in Sopot is one of the symbols of the health resort. Its history going back to the idea of creating a resort in the small fishing village on Gdansk Bay. The idea was pursued by Jean Georges Haffner, a French Doctor, who arrived there as an Army Doctor serving Napoleon's troops and who decided to stay in Gdańsk after the imperial plans of the French emperor had been demolished. He is the creator of the whole infrastructure of bathing and tourist attractions in Sopot, including the pier going into the sea.
The first pier from Haffner's times was only 30 metres long and was deconstructed before each winter to preserve its parts from sea storms. In the 19th Century it was extended to 150 metres and at the beginning of the 20th Century it was over 300 metres long, but today's length results from the reconstruction which took place at the end of the 1920's. Precise information on its current length depends on various measuring points chosen. The safest bet is to say that the pier in Sopot is approximately half a kilometre long.
It remains the longest wooden pier in Europe and was recently quite substantially modernised. First, in the 1890's, its tip was secured with a concrete head against the strong forces of the sea, and then in the 20th Century the pier underwent general preservation works and a yacht harbour was constructed at its southern end.
For almost 200 years a walk across the pier remains the obligatory part of any visit to Sopot, notwithstanding where you arrived from, be it a long distance or just a weekend family walk. Half a kilometre into the sea for anyone who walked from the beach to the end of the pier offers a great view onto the Sopot panorama and helps discover the dangerous beauty of the sea.
Pomorskie in books
Sopot walking trails.
The Grand Hotel
The Pier in Sopot
The Sopot Health Resort
Beach offer of the Tri-City
Bohaterów Monte Cassino - "Monciak"
The fishing harbour and fishing houses
Jean Georges Haffner
Night life in Sopot