The best bars in Warsaw, Poland...

 

The bars in Krakow are largely aimed at the partying tourists, each claiming to offer "the best cocktails in town", with promotions girls on the street trying to talk you in. However with a bit of research, like our list below, you can find some great cocktail bars and unique venues away from the stag-parties and large groups looking to get wasted.

 
 
  • Warsaw bars generally get busy after 18:00 with most closing at midnight or 02:00, and clubs at 06:00
  • Warsaw is a small enough city to be explored easily by foot or short Metro rides.
  • Most Warsaw bars accept payment by credit or debit card
  • Staff in most Warsaw bars speak fluent English
  • Most Warsaw bars offer free WiFi, even at some of the older establishments
  • You can not smoke in bars in Warsaw
  • Generally, the locals tip by just leaving loose change however, when paying, be careful when saying "Dziękuje", or even "Thank you" in English, as that indicates you do not want any change back

 

Best Bars Warsaw ~ Dom Wodki / Photo: Facebook domwodki

Best Bars Warsaw ~ Dom Wodki / Photo: Facebook domwodki

1 ~ DOM WÓDKI ~ VODKA ATELIER

Opened in October 2015 next to the Opera house, and with plans to expand to the bar next door, this incredible modern cocktail bar specialises in vodka - 320 varieties of it to be precise with 120 from Poland alone. Dom Wodki is two concepts under one roof; the Elixir Restaurant offers some of the best Polish dishes we've tasted, each given a modern fine dining twist, whilst the Vodka Atelier bar is a stunning place to sample the national drink or enjoy some well crafted vodka cocktails and even sample food and vodka pairings.

Cocktails 25zł+     Beer (0.5l) 12zł+  Wine  10zł+

Ratusz Arsenał (7 mins walk)

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Best Bars Warsaw ~ El Koktel / Photo: Facebook elkoktel

Best Bars Warsaw ~ El Koktel / Photo: Facebook elkoktel

2 ~ EL KOKTEL

A few years ago, quality cocktail bars were a rare thing in Warsaw.  Now, there seems to be a plethora of openings, especially in the area around Poznanska Street.  However it's the drinks at this tiny basement bar below the Leniviec Cocktail Bar and Chill Out Hostel that stand out over anything else in the city, thanks largely to the return of two pioneers on the Polish bar scene.  Diageo World Class 2015 Finalist Mateusz Szuchnik is recognised as the best barman in Poland, learning his trade at Paparazzi, Pies Czy Suka (below), and London's Michelin-starred Pollen Street Social before returning to open this place in December 2014 with Paweł Rodaszyński (also formerly Pies Czy Suka).  Press the buzzer on the door and enter to be rewarded with some of the best drinks you've ever tasted.

Cocktails 25zł+     Beer (0.5l) 12zł+  Wine  12zł+

Centrum (10 mins walk)

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Best Bars Warsaw ~ Kita Koguta / Photo: Facebook kitakoguta

Best Bars Warsaw ~ Kita Koguta / Photo: Facebook kitakoguta

3 ~ KITA KOGUTA

Translated as "Cock" or "Rooster" Crest, this colourful two-storey April 2014 opening completely transformed the premises of the high-end cocktail bar, Columbia. Thankfully it's owned by two former Columbia bartenders so the seasonally changing drinks remain just as creative and tasty, presented in glasses that are either smoking or on fire, such as the delicious "Candy Man", a mix of Woodford Reserve bourbon, Laphroaig single malt whisky, Fernet Branca Menta, Polish berry liquor and white chocolate syrup, served in a smoking metal fish.  It's no surprise that the place is packed with some of Warsaw's most fashionable crowd.

Cocktails 26zł+     Beer (0.5l) 13zł+  Wine  13zł+

Centrum (14 mins walk)

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Best Bars Warsaw ~ Pies Czy Suka / Photo: Facebook piesczysuka

Best Bars Warsaw ~ Pies Czy Suka / Photo: Facebook piesczysuka

4 ~ PIES CZY SUKA

Translated into English as "Dog or Bitch", this hidden-away cocktail bar is one of our favourites in the whole of Europe.  Located inside a designer concept store, the drinks are every bit as bespoke as the furniture for sale around it, each presented in one unique glass or another.  The menu is delivered on an iPad and whilst many of the cocktails may no longer be of the same international competition standard as the days when one World Class Finalist after another learned their trade here, there's still plenty to keep you happy.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

Centrum (9 mins walk)

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Best Bars Warsaw ~ Między Ustami

Best Bars Warsaw ~ Między Ustami

5 ~ MIEDZY USTAMI

It comes as no surprise to us that this Victorian industrial style stunning cocktail bar has won numerous awards for its design since opening in March 2015.  Translated as "Between Mouth", its eye catching bespoke copper furniture is as well crafted as the delicious drinks on offer and the bar is relaxed enough to be a great place to enjoy a good conversation with friends.

Cocktails 27zł+     Beer (0.5l) 12zł+  Wine  15zł+

Politechnika (8 mins walk)

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Alchemia / Photo: Mercat Princesa

Best Bars Krakow ~ Alchemia / Photo: Mercat Princesa

4 ~ MIEDZY USTAMI

It comes as no surprise to us that this Victorian industrial style stunning cocktail bar has won numerous awards for its design since opening in March 2015.  Translated as "Between Mouth", its eye catching bespoke copper furniture is as well crafted as the delicious drinks on offer and the bar is relaxed enough to be a great place to enjoy a good conversation with friends.

Cocktails 27zł+     Beer (0.5l) 12zł+  Wine  15zł+

Politechnika (8 mins walk)

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Best Bars Warsaw ~ 6 Cocktails / Photo: Facebook 6cocktails

Best Bars Warsaw ~ 6 Cocktails / Photo: Facebook 6cocktails

6 ~ 6 COCKTAILS

This is Warsaw partying at its very best.  The first proper speakeasy to open in the city, you'll have to press a buzzer at 57 Mokotowska street and wait to see if the big wooden door to the building buzzes open for you.  From there, enter the courtyard and take the unmarked door on the left, climbing the unlit stairway to the third floor, following the noise to apartment number 6 as guidance, where once more, you'll need to ring the bell and hope the stern doorman lets you in.  It's all very clandestine and feels like you've been invited to a secret party at a private apartment.  Which, in essence is what it is. The apartment in question, being Enyo's, the 20 year old law-student who inherited it from his grandmother. Apparently he lived for most of his life in the room now used as the cloakroom, whilst the bathroom still boasts a shower cubicle.  A bar in the corner of one room serves up great cocktails to a smartly dresses young crowd, and a DJ in the living room provides the soundtrack.  Opened in January 2015, it's hard to say how long the place will last before the authorities pick up on the lack of fire escapes and sprinklers.  Something that became apparent when the lock on the door broke and we couldn't exit temporarily.  Not that we're complaining - there are far worse places to be trapped on a night out.

Cocktails 25zł+     Beer (0.5l) 16zł+  Wine  22zł+

Politechnika (13 mins walk)

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Taras Widokowy / Photo: taras-loungebar.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Taras Widokowy / Photo: taras-loungebar.pl

7 ~ TARAS WIDOKOWY

Open from April until the end of October, the terrace bar on the fifth floor of the plush Sheraton Hotel offers some of the best views in Krakow.  There's no better place in town to enjoy the afternoon sun or sip cocktails as you watch the sun set over the Wisla River and Wawel Castle.  A retractable roof offers some shade on hot days, as well as wind and rain protection when required.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Krako Slow Wines / Photo: krakoslowwines.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Krako Slow Wines / Photo: krakoslowwines.pl

8 ~ LIPOWA 6F / KRAKÓ SLOW WINES

Located next to the Fabryka Emalia Oskara Schindler (Schindler's Factory Museum). across the water from the main town, this wine bar and shop specialises in wines traditionally manufactured in Poland, Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, with many available by the glass.  Besides wine, there's also Polish, Hungarian and Romanian fruit distillates, Ararat Armenian brandy and a selection of Polish beer, meads and ciders.  There's regular tasting nights and Balkan events with various traditional dishes to help soak up the alcohol.  This is a place worth visiting when in the area for a totally different experience.  Open daily until 21:00 (22:00 at weekends)

Beer (0.5l) 6zł+   Wine  7zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Scandale Royal / Photo: Facebook ScandaleRoyalKrk

Best Bars Krakow ~ Scandale Royal / Photo: Facebook ScandaleRoyalKrk

9 ~ SCANDALE ROYAL

Elegant, glamorous and more expensive than most Krakow bars, this restaurant and cocktail bar, just off the main square, offers some of the best drinks in Krakow.  There's a great selection of creative cocktails and wines, with special events, wine tasting, and cocktail classes making it one of the nicest places in town to drink.

Cocktails 21zł+     Beer (0.5l) 12zł+  Wine  12zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Plaza Krakow / Photo: plazakrakow.com

Best Bars Krakow ~ Plaza Krakow / Photo: plazakrakow.com

10 ~ Plaża Kraków

A real beach bar, on the opposite side of the River Wisla, overlooking the picturesque panorama of the Old Town, this bar, club, swimming pool and restaurant claims to have the "biggest man made beach in Europe", with 10’000m2 of sand.  International DJs perform regularly, there's 150 sun loungers to relax on, the cocktails are some of the best in town and the floating swimming pool is built on the biggest barge in Krakow.  There's something for everybody here, including beach volleyball and tennis.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not knownWine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Spolem / Photo: pubspolem.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Spolem / Photo: pubspolem.pl

11 ~ PUB Społem

This basement exposed brick walled Soviet-era theme bar and club is the place to go if you want to grab a feel for Poland's communist past.  Alongside vintage memorabilia, the DJ booth is even made from an old communist "Żuk" car, from which DJs spin mainly 1960's, 70's, 80's and 1990's Polish and American hits. The drinks menu is mainly made up of aptly named shots, available by the flight.

Cocktails 11zł+     Beer (0.5l) 6zł+  Wine  6zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Bunkier Cafe

Best Bars Krakow ~ Bunkier Cafe

12 ~ BUNKIER CAFE

Located in the peaceful Planty Gardens, within the Old Town, and next to the Bunker Sztuki contemporary art gallery, one of Poland’s most important art institutions, this popular all year round terrace bar not only serves great coffee but is also one of the only places in Krakow to serve tank beer, which is transported directly fresh each day from the brewery, free from pasteurisation and microfiltering.  Kept at 4°C - 6°C from brewery to tap, it is never in contact with air or carbon dioxide until it hits your glass.

Cocktails 11zł+     Beer (0.5l) 10zł+  Wine  8zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Cafe Szafe

Best Bars Krakow ~ Cafe Szafe

13 ~ CAFE SZAFE

This literary and musical colourful hangout near Wawel Castle first opened its blue doors in 2002 and features four blue wardrobes, one of which two people can sit inside.  It regularly hosts book readings, poetry nights, art displays and music events, easily making it one of the most interesting places in Krakow.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Le Scandale / Photo: lescandale.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Le Scandale / Photo: lescandale.pl

14 ~ LE SCANDALE

This plush restaurant in the Kazimierz Jewish Quarter offers three very different bars under one roof, each serving some of the best cocktails in Krakow.  It's the perfect place to spend a relaxing afternoon or sample deliciously crafted cocktails.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Miejsce Bar / Photo: Miejsce Bar Facebook

Best Bars Krakow ~ Miejsce Bar / Photo: Miejsce Bar Facebook

15 ~ MIEJSCE BAR

Open until 02:00 every day, this low budget arty bar in the Kazimierz Jewish Quarter is popular with hipsters and students.  With white walls and bright coloured 1950's style seating, "The Place" stands out amongst the usual tourist-aimed bars in Krakow.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Piec Art Jazz Club / Photo: piecart.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Piec Art Jazz Club / Photo: piecart.pl

16 ~ Piec Art Acoustic Jazz Club

This live music bar, situated in a historical building in the centre of the Old Town, first opened in the 1990s and is considered as one of the best jazz clubs in Poland. Set over two levels, some of the greatest names in world jazz have performed here.  The main concert room can get smoky, however the cellar is also connected to a whisky bar with the longest bar counter in Krakow, serving over 50 whiskeys and perfectly prepared cocktails.

Cocktails 8zł+     Beer (0.5l) 8zł+  Wine  6zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Spokoj & Cisza / Photo: Facebook spokojcisza

Best Bars Krakow ~ Spokoj & Cisza / Photo: Facebook spokojcisza

17 ~ SpokóJ I CISZA

Translated in English as "Peace and Quiet", this two-room Bohemian drinking den is hidden up some stairs in a courtyard, just off the famous Bracka Street in the Old Town.  Open until 03:00 daily, the colourful retro 1960s surroundings attract hipsters and students for its good choice of Polish beers and huge choice of syrups, with which Poles like to mix them with.

 

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Pergamin / Photo: Facebook PERGAMIN.coktailbar

Best Bars Krakow ~ Pergamin / Photo: Facebook PERGAMIN.coktailbar

18 ~ PERGAMIN CHILL OUT MUSIC BAR

Located in the Old Town on the famous Bracka Street, this cocktail bar offers a huge list of drinks broken down into the base alcohol of your choice together with a menu compiled from famous mixologists as well as signature creations.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Singer / Photo: Facebook Singer

Best Bars Krakow ~ Singer / Photo: Facebook Singer

19 ~ SINGER

Named after the vintage sewing machines which decorate the room, this late night party bar in the vibrant Kazimierz Jewish Quarter is a Krakow institution. Dark and candle lit, the bar comes to life when other bars close (it's open until 03:00 during the week and 06:00 Friday and Saturday), as tables act as makeshift dance floors and everybody goes wild to the Klezmer, Balkan and Swing music.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Finka / Photo: klubfinka.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Finka / Photo: klubfinka.pl

20 ~ FINKA

This hipster hangout in the vibrant Kazimierz Jewish Quarter is decorated with recycled furniture, offers delicious Fair Trade Coffee and alternative music.  More relaxed, bright and contemporary than the other bars in the area, it's a great place to watch the world go by whilst sitting on hammock chairs and sipping on a smoothie, a cocktail, beer, or one of the many tasty homemade shots.

Cocktails 16zł+     Beer (0.5l) 8zł+    Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Chmiel Beer Pub / Photo: pubchmiel.eu

Best Bars Krakow ~ Chmiel Beer Pub / Photo: pubchmiel.eu

21 ~ CHMIEL BEER PUB

The only place of its kind in Poland and one of just a few in Europe.  This "Pinball Museum" is home to more than 40 pinball machines, with competitions regularly held. Oh, and if you're looking for something to drink whilst you play, there's over 200 beers to choose from in the cavernous brick walled bar. Open Tuesday - Sunday 16:00 - 24:00

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known   Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Baroque / Photo: jana.baroque.com.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Baroque / Photo: jana.baroque.com.pl

22 ~ BAROQUE

This upmarket restaurant and cocktail bar is another boastfully claiming to offer "the best cocktails in Krakow".  Located just off the main square (there is also another branch in the Kazimierz Jewish Quarter), a beautiful secret garden at the back offers a great summertime environment to enjoy one of the 200 cocktails, whilst the disco in the basement to dance the night away.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) Not known   Wine  Not known

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Cheder Cafe / photo: jewishfestival.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Cheder Cafe / photo: jewishfestival.pl

23 ~ CHEDER CAFE

In 1890, on the ground floor of the building at 36 Jozefa Street in Krakow’s Kazimierz district, the Jewish religious organisation, Khevra Ner Tamid, opened its bet hamidrash (house of prayers). It was devastated and desacrated during WWII and afterwards has never served its religious functions again. In 2009, the abandoned building regained its social and cultural functions thanks to the Jewish Culture Festival opening this amazing cafe bar.  With live music, workshops, a library and great drinks, it is a must-visit when in Kazimierz.

Cocktails 12zł+     Beer (0.5l) Not known  Wine  8zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ BaniaLuka / Photo: Facebook BaniaLuka-Między-wódką-a-zakąską

Best Bars Krakow ~ BaniaLuka / Photo: Facebook BaniaLuka-Między-wódką-a-zakąską

24 ~ BANIA LUKA

This cheap booze bar is possibly the best of those that typify many of the tourist and student targeted offerings located around Krakow's Old Town. Open 24 hours a day, the many beers, vodkas and drinks are all the same price (4zł), whilst the Soviet inspired bar snacks are all just 8zł.  With drinks this cheap and a team of pretty barmaids, it's no surprise that it can get rowdy as the night progresses.

Cocktails Not known     Beer (0.5l) 5zł+  Wine  4zł+

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Best Bars Krakow ~ Movida / Photo: movida-bar.pl

Best Bars Krakow ~ Movida / Photo: movida-bar.pl

25 ~ MOVIDA BAR

Formerly known as "Paparazzi" and boastfully claiming to offer "the best cocktails in Krakow", this popular establishment just off the main square is decorated with black and white photographs of Hollywood celebrities. Only bartenders with international experience are employed, serving up cocktails based on the best quality alcohol, fresh fruit and juices. There's a smoking room at the back and special offers, including free drinks, help entice customers in.

Cocktails 19zł+     Beer (0.5l) 11zł+  Wine  16zł+

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