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amother




OP
 

Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:40 pm
DrMom wrote:
You're not excited about going to Eretz Yisrael, so you thought you'd make up for it by enjoying yourself... in *Poland* (in January!) with 3 little kids?

Scratching Head

To each his own...


Yes! I guess I'm unique!!
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ggdm




 
 
 
 

Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 1:44 pm
Dear OP. First question: What would YOU enjoy. From your post it seems you might enjoy a Jewish/history museum, walking around historic places, maybe a shul or cemetery. As I said, I don't know Warsaw. I know other Polish cities and I could totally imagine you spending 1-2 hours at a museum, then a small tour through historic neighborhoods, restaurant and back to the airport. I'd personally plan a minimum 10 hour stopover to have relaxed time, but I am an anxious person Wink

Second question: Your kids. Imagine you had a few hours after a long trip in New York or San Francisco or Washington or whatever interesting American city you haven't been to. What would you do? Take them along to museum, walk, etc with stops for playground? Then you can do that in Warsaw, too, I don't see why not. Go to an amusement park the whole day as otherwise they will be impossible? Then sorry, chose your stopover city to be closer to a good amusement park (Paris for Eurodisney?). Basically that's your decision. [as an aside, will you travel alone with the kids?]

January will be cold in Poland, but if you are lucky on a sunny day, you can still have a good time outside with appropriate clothing. Polish people are in general friendly. There have been antisemitic incidents, but you will be ok with basic precautions.
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amother




Indigo
 

Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 2:23 pm
OP, it’s not weird to go to Poland to have a nice time- actually it’s a really nice place to visit, with kids at that. Also the nature is beautiful, if you're into the outdoors. Our family, which is clearly frum considering the boys wear kippahs and the girls are tznius, has been to Poland (Krakow, Warsaw, Wroclaw, Poznan) with kids. Does everyone there love Yidden- no, and we even had a 2 or 3 bad experiences during the 3 weeks we were there. BUT- that was the minority, and most people were fine, if not outright nice. Poland is a modern, clean, safe and developed country (you'll be surprised), and despite there being some hateful people, most have moved on from those beliefs. Don't worry- you feel safe there in a kippah. It's definitely not the Soviet Union or a Shtetl anymore. However if one goes around thinking everyone’s an anti-Semite… guess who they’ll meet? Lots of anti-Semites who respond to their vibe!

In addition to seeing beautifully preserved Jewish historical sites like the Polin Museum (our kids loved it), the original Beis Yaakov in Krakow, Sara Schenirer's house in Krakow (she was from Krakow!), several old shuls, the Jewish cemetery in Krakow, the old Jewish area in Krakow, the former Ghetto area in Warsaw and etc., we also did fun kid activities. The best one was an indoor play area at a Warsaw mall on the top floor 9most large city malls in Poland have these.They cost money, but they have so much for kids to do). It had a huge ball pit, slides, toys galore, a virtual colouring station, a regular colouring station, interactive virtual kids games, indoor bicycles, baby play area, and while kids play the parents sat on sofas/chairs working, reading or chatting. Nice atmosphere. That according to the youngest kids was the best part of the vacation. Despite being dressed differently, and in kippahs and tzitzit, no Polish kids teased ours, nobody didn't let them play with the toys, and no Polish parents there gave us bad looks or anything like that- in other words, we were treated the same as everyone else. Taxi drivers made friendly conversation. Store clerks were normal. I really hate to say this, but we got significantly fewer awkward and unwelcoming treatment in Poland than a Polish Gentile would have gotten walking around our Haredi neighbourhood in Israel…
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Ruchel




 
 
 
 

Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 3:57 pm
If it is important to you go to Jewish owned places
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PinkFridge




 
 
 
 

Post  Wed, Sep 11 2019, 5:17 pm
ggdm wrote:
People were saved in Poland as well. Lots of rightous among the people in Yad vaShem are Polish.


What I meant was, parts of France were officially safe.
Nowhere was it safe in Poland.
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Ruchel




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 6:25 am
That's not Polands's fault nor what people reproach Poland with. Occupation is occupation. It's the pogroms before etc (and sadly, after). But again, one day I'll go see my ancestors too. IYH. I will take Jewish airbnbs.
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amother




Amethyst
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 6:32 am
as an aside, the Poles by and large were vicious by all accounts of anyone who survived that Gehinom there
unfortunately we had family go through the Shoah in Poland H"YD
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Ruchel




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 6:41 am
Yes, in my country Ashkenazis are mostly Yekke (local) or Polish. My 3 grandparents are Polish.
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lucky14




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 6:59 am
As some others have said it is so so so so so cold there in the winter. If you are going for historic reasons I don't suggest going with the kids. They will probably be very bored. Bored + extreme cold. I don't think this will be the trip you are hoping it will be. I advise against it and suggest waiting until they are older.
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amother




Periwinkle
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 8:26 am
Yes, there's a reason holocaust survivors talked about the unbearable cold while trying to survive through the winter.
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Ruchel




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 8:39 am
I also don't suggest winter. It's a continental climate.
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DrMom




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 8:47 am
How long is your stopover?

You may be better off letting your kids blow off some steam in the airport than schlepping around in the Polish winter for a few hours.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 8:48 am
DrMom wrote:
How long is your stopover?

You may be better off letting your kids blow off some steam in the airport than schlepping around in the Polish winter for a few hours.


10 hours

Thanks everyone for replies

I think I would take them to a nice kids indoor place, restaurant and just drive by and have a quick look at the historic sites

Anyone have suggestions for kids indoor activity?
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DrMom




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 8:56 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
10 hours

Thanks everyone for replies

I think I would take them to a nice kids indoor place, restaurant and just drive by and have a quick look at the historic sites

Anyone have suggestions for kids indoor activity?

Where are you flying in from? How long is the first leg of your flight? From NYC it takes ~8-9 hours. Is that a night flight, and then you have the daytime in Warsaw?

Also, how will you "drive by?" Are you renting a car? That also takes time... esp the return process.

Are you travelling with 3 kids on your own, or will somebody be helping you?

This all sounds exhausting with 3 kids in tow.
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Raisin




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 9:12 am
PinkFridge wrote:
What I meant was, parts of France were officially safe.
Nowhere was it safe in Poland.


The whole of Paris was occupied by the Nazis. Part of the south of France was not, but the Vchy government collaborated so I don't know how safe it was.

As for why there is a continuous Jewish community in France, that is more to do with the communists then the Nazis.
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doctorima




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 10:30 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
10 hours

I think I would take them to a nice kids indoor place, restaurant and just drive by and have a quick look at the historic sites


There's nothing to "drive by and have a quick look at." You could drive by the cemetery, but unless you get out and go to specific kevarim, it'll just be another cemetery, if perhaps a little older than you're accustomed to. The remnants of the Warsaw Ghetto are completely non-remarkable if you just look at them from a car and don't get out to read the informative plaques next to them. The museum and shul are similarly meaningless from the street. If the weather and your kids ages are going to prevent you from properly experiencing the Jewish history of Warsaw, I don't really see any value to this stopover.
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Ruchel




 
 
 
 

Post  Thu, Sep 12 2019, 11:25 am
Commies, numbers of survivors, but also many survivors who went to Western Europe. Later on the Jews from the x colonies arrived en masse.
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