Wroclaw – The Best City to Take Kids in Europe

For all parents that want to experience a really fun couple of days in a city, and for free, Wrocław is the place to go. We’ve all wanted our children, our students, our friends’ kids to enjoy the places we’ve brought them to; and, well, they sometimes just don’t. It’s exasperating and frustrating. Why can’t cities, museums, places of historical interest keep children in mind at all times? Well folks, Wrocław has done it! I hope they become an example for all city tourist boards! Wroclaw with kids; it’s where you want to go!

What is more magical than a whole orchestra of dwarfs? Dwarf hunting in Wroclaw Poland

What is more magical than a whole orchestra of dwarfs? Little M was fascinated by the many mini-statues he found all around the city. This is why Wroclaw with kids makes the city that much more fun!

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Wroclaw with Kids! The Best Way to See the City

Digital Nomad Dwarf working in Wroclaw, Poland the best city in Europe for kids

This is a position we can all relate to nowadays. Even Wroclaw dwarfs like their wifi!

Here a dwarf, there a dwarf...everywhere are dwarfs. Just the right height for every child to find one in Wroclaw, Poland

The money lender looks generous enough.

Wrocław has “doing it” down in spades, and has become the City of the Dwarfs. There are foot-high statues all over the city of one, or more, dwarfs representing a job or an activity, and often, but not always, related to the location. For example, the money machine dwarfs just happen to have their machine located next to three cash machines at one of the banks. Just walking along the streets becomes a treasure hunt for any kid, young or old.

Wroclaw - Gnomes everywhere...this one riding and waving from the back of a lion.

Why Do Dwarfs Inhabit Wroclaw City Center?

According to the Wrocław City website, the dwarf statues first started appearing in 2005 and have grown to a number of around 300.

Female dward photographing dwarfs.

Probably my favorite dwarf in all of Wroclaw, this tourist dwarf is taking photos of all the dwarfs she finds.

Why dwarfs? Well, I don’t think the city initially thought of all the kids in the world looking for them, and instead, it began as political statement and a tribute to the Orange Alternative and its founder Waldemar Fydrych. This anti-communist group was active in the late 1980s and would try to undermine the current regime in whimsical and silly ways so that the militia would look foolish when they tried to suppress them.

A dwarf taking money out of an ATM.

And another Wroclaw dwarf after my own heart…chasing down the ATMs so I can spend more money on those Polish souvenirs!

One way it would do so was through graffiti. It is a tradition that Wrocław still embraces today. You can see graffiti on almost every wall and door. It can be extremely unsightly; and, during the communist regimes, the militia could easily find the graffiti culprits.

Little girl finding time to photograph the Wroclaw dwarves

The Wroclaw dwards, only about 10 – 12 inches high, are at the perfect height for small kids, and they love it!

Many were arrested and imprisoned,the anti-communist slogans painted over, and everything would go back to normal, for a while. The OA started painting small dwarfs over the painted-over graffiti. These were more difficult to locate, and they were seemingly less threatening. Regardless, Fydrych was still arrested and given a life-long sentence.

 

A dwarf after my own heart, video Wroclaw.

Wroclaw dwarves come from all walks of life, and this one…a movie-lover, is one we can all relate to.

At any rate, graffiti or no, Wrocław is a joy to walk around. Not only does it have a gorgeous city hall, as well as many other beautiful buildings, it has these fantastical and fun little dwarfs to search out.

I challenge all of you kids, from 2 to 102, to go out there and find some of these dwarfs.

A dwarf holding his hand behind his ear to listen.

One of the very first dwarfs I found the first time I visited Wroclaw!

If you would like to find out more about the dwarfs, they do thave their own website, and you can also pick up a map of all the dwarfs’ locations at the Tourist Information. It is located right in the middle of the town square (Rynek).

Information Center in Wroclaw is right on the main square in the old town.

Grab a map at the Wroclaw information center in the main square and go on a dwarf hunt.

After searching for Dwarfs, why not do some Polish Pottery shopping at Poland’s Pottery Capital, Boleslawiec.

We love staying in Wroclaw at the LeoApart apartments. They are modern, clean and affordable and right in the old town with secure parking. We don’t have any type of special partnership with them or anything, but having the extra rooms and kitchen makes for a very comfortable stay, especially with children.

Find a hotel in Wroclaw, Poland

Have you been to Wrocław with kids?  How many dwarfs did you catch?

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Pin Wroclaw, the best city for Kids for later!

Here a dwarf, there a dwarf...everywhere are dwarfs. Just the right height for every child to find one in Wroclaw, Poland
Here a dwarf, there a dwarf...everywhere are dwarfs. Just the right height for every child to find one in Wroclaw, PolandHere a dwarf, there a dwarf...everywhere are dwarfs. Just the right height for every child to find one in Wroclaw, Poland

Here a dwarf, there a dwarf...everywhere are dwarfs. Just the right height for every child to find one in Wroclaw, Poland

31 Comments

  1. I was in Wrocław in 2009! I also loved the city. The sqaure where the Opera House is was really beautiful, as I remembered. (I don’t remember more detailed information. :P) But I didn’t know there are tons of dwarf statues in the city! I will try to look precisely if I have another chance to visit! 😀

  2. I found this old post from a pin on Mappin Monday and it’s such great timing as (I think I said to you before) we’re debating a road trip to Poland this summer…I’ve heard how lovely this city is and now it seems even more charming. Thanks Corinne!

  3. Hey! Great to see this article. We go to Wroclaw next week with our kids and can’t wait to do some dwarf hunting! They have been very excited about it ever since I told them.

  4. I have heard about the dwarves and that is what makes me want to visit Wroclaw. Well, after visiting Poland, I feel like it is a very underrated country. It is full of gorgeous cities and yummy food. But, this city has those unique characters all over the place. #wkendtravelinspiration

  5. What a genius idea to get kids of all ages involved in exploring a city. I love all these little Dwarfs especially the one of the fotografer taking a picture of the mini dwarf. It’s kind of like geocaching where you search out Treasures in a city that just happened to be near really cool historical things

  6. I had never heard of this city prior to this article, although I have had Poland on my mind for a while. Definitely need to do a little more investigation, as it looks like a fun place to visit! Thank you!

  7. I love this so much! Although it may not have been the original intent, this is such a fun thing for kids (and really adults too) to experience. I love cities that have hidden things throughout. I think there is a recent movement too in the US where people hid painted stones with encouraging messages on them and it has become a bit of a treasure hunt. Not exactly the same, but a similar spirit 🙂

  8. How cute are the dwarves. I can see how kids would be enchanted by them and the city generally. We haven’t been to Poland yet but can’t wait to go and take our little one. Looks like she will just love it. Thanks for sharing.

  9. This looks like such a fun city to explore, love these dwarves all over too! We’ve not visited Wroclaw but we’ve heard good things and visited Poland twice and loved it, so I am sure we would really enjoy it!

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