Poland’s dark past as the location of Nazi Germany extermination camps and Jewish cemeteries will never be forgotten but it is a country now keen to portray a more positive twenty-first century image. Although a slow process, Poland’s cities are starting to modernise. This is thanks to the redevelopment aid from its recent EU membership, which is helping to undo the years of neglect. The beautiful medieval cities of Krakow, Wrocław and Toruń help the cause, attracting more tourists year on year to their charms. Warsaw is leading the way with the opening of new shops, restaurants and clubs to entice those seeking modern entertainment. Venture into the countryside and you will still find a very provincial scene. But those seeking the untouched will be rewarded with gothic castles, countless crystal-watered lakes in the Masurian Lake district, the ancient woodlands of Białowieża Forest and the beautiful Baltic coastline. So grab some Pierogi dumplings to sustain you and discover these Polish gems that have been waiting too long for their chance to shine.