Warsaw

Praga

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Kino Praha sign from the Neon Museum at the Soho factory in Praga

Gritty. Bo-ho. Up-and-coming. There are a lot of terms being tossed around to describe Praga, the eastern district of Warsaw that hugs the Vistula River, and they’re all fairly apt. Praga has long been regarded as off-limits to Western visitors thanks to its criminal underclass and imposing tower blocks, but a revival of sorts now makes this section of town worthy of emphasising – especially if you prefer to see the city’s artsy underbelly and get away from the well-trodden tourist path. Today working-class Praga is the standard-bearer for cool, especially among those who find the tourist-heavy Old Town too Disneyfied and the sterile clubs in Warsaw's city centre as distasteful. Folks here prefer their bars dark and their fun improvised. Visitors can now easily hop on the new second line of the metro and shoot over to Praga to spend a day checking out the sights and an evening enjoying the ever expansive nightlife. The area is still a few years away from being hipster-soaked Brooklyn or boho Montmartre, but that’s exactly why now is the time to go: a visit will mean you can say you saw the evolution in progress.

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