When choosing transportation to Poland from Copenhagen, I decided against flying. That’s because, on such short notice, the flight (we didn’t decide on this trip until just a few days prior) would have cost the same as what I paid for my flight to Seattle! (I paid less than 4000 kr – or 600 US dollars – for my flight to and from Seattle. The quote from Copenhagen to Katowice was roughly the same). Since I was traveling with my daughter, Nani, I would be paying twice as much. That seemed a bit steep, considering how inexpensive flights within Europe tend to be! So I decided to go the cheaper and a lot more scenic route.
(Scenic means long.)
Someone suggested to me to take the bus, which is comfortable and also scenic, but sitting in one spot for over 17 hours seemed a bit much. At least on trains and ferries, you can get up and walk around.
I chose trains and ferries.
We left our house in Lyngby at 5:40 am on a Saturday and caught a train to Copenhagen central. At Copenhagen central, we took a train to Sweden and got off at the first stop at Malmö Hyllie. From there we took another train to Trelleborg, for the 9:30 am ferry.
In Trelleborg, we dragged our luggage with us to the ferry terminal. The ferry tickets warned us that the check-in closes at 8:30 am, but that was not the case. We checked in and waited for over an hour. Oddly enough, we were the only walk-on passengers (until a young woman with her two little kids showed up). Everyone was getting on the ferry by car. And most of the cars were actually trucks!
Trucks come with truck drivers and judging from how they behave truck drivers seem to go for days, weeks or maybe even months without seeing a woman. Being stared at like you’re a sandwich to a man who just skipped a meal is never pleasant. Being stared at like that for six hours straight is torturous (on the way back we’re getting a cabin and locking the doors).
The ferry crossing was six hours long. We left at 9:30 am and had disgusting, truck-driving men staring at us until 4:30 pm. They also talked and unfortunately, they mostly spoke Polish so I could understand them. Here I had a chance to brush up on all the swear words before docking in Świnoujscie.
From there we still had an 11-hour train ride across the entire country. We spent the night in this cute seaside town of Świnoujscie and then the entire next day. In the evening we took the night train to Gliwice.
Although I slept on the train (we got a sleeping compartment), I was disappointed to find out that the old train tracks have been replaced with new ones and no longer go: bump-bump in the night. Sleeping on a train wasn’t as rhythmic as it once was. But I mostly slept.
Arrived in Gliwice around 7:30 am (the train was a little late) on a Monday.
Poland is definitely further than I thought. Next time, I plan to fly.