There has been a boom in the number of Czech tourists travelling to Poland for their summer holidays, data from travel agencies and local authorities show.
Visitors from the landlocked Czech Republic are in particular heading to the beaches of Poland’s Baltic Sea coast.
“For the first time ever, we are seeing that Poland is among the most popular summer destinations,” Ladislav Veselý, director of the Czech booking portal Slevomat, told the Czech edition of Forbes. The magazine has dubbed Poland the “new Croatia”, in reference to another popular holiday destination.
Sales of stays in Poland booked through Slevomat have increased by 50% since last year, with destinations along the Baltic coast being the most popular for Czech holidaymakers.
“Czechs have discovered the charm of the beaches there, which are sandy, clean and above all not nearly as crowded as elsewhere,” Veselý told Forbes.
Many other travel agencies in Czechia have also seen heightened interest in and bookings of Polish vacations, with Forbes reporting that another booking platform, Dovolena.cz, has registered a 158% increase in interest in Polish holidays since January.
Travel company Invia, which represents more than 150 Czech and foreign travel agencies, has also reported a doubling of interest in holidays in Poland from Czech tourists.
“Poland offers beautiful monuments, historical cities, untouched nature, sea, mountains, lakes. It has a lot to offer,” Invia spokeswoman Jiřina Ekrt Jirušková told Forbes.
In addition to the beauty of the country, Jirušková also believes that Poland has become a popular destination due to its affordability. “Most services, whether it is accommodation, restaurants or entertainment attractions, are cheaper in Poland than [in Czechia],” she said.
Many Czechs have also been turned off the popular holiday destination of Croatia due to rising costs in the country, fueled in part by this year’s introduction of the euro.
The increased presence of Czech tourists has not gone unnoticed in Poland, including in Sopot, a popular resort town on the Baltic coast.
“Already last year, Czechs were among the top three nationalities of tourists visiting tourist information points in Sopot during the holidays,” Bartłomiej Barski, president of the Sopot Tourist Organisation, told newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza.
Barski credits improved transport infrastructure as one reason for the growing number of Czech visitors, noting that they can reach the Polish coast by motorway in a few hours. Since March, Ryanair has also been flying from Prague to Gdańsk, a city neighbouring Sopot.
Barski, along with others working in the tourist sector in Poland, are pleased with the growing number of Czech tourists. “We cannot just limit ourselves to the Germans or Scandinavians. Any new market that is interested in our region is welcome.”
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