Several thousands exhibits related to Polish Olympians and athletes, the kayak used by Karol Wojtyła during the rafting trip, 15 thousand photography, 16 thousand books and over 2thousand documents and archives, and in front of the main entrance a sculpture of the outstanding Polish artist Igor Mitoraj – this is how you can describe the collection of the Sports and Tourism Museum. The facility, located at Wybrzeże Gdyńskie in Warsaw, has been operating for almost 70 years and is one of the oldest museums of this type in Europe.
The central part of the museum is occupied by a permanent exhibition called “The history of Polish sport and Olympism”. It presents the history of sport: from ancient Greece, through the birth of the modern Olympic Games in the 19th century and the beginnings of Polish sport at the turn of the 19 and 20th centuries, up to the present day. In the facility, you can also see several thousands exhibits related to the Polish Olympians and athletes, representatives of over 40 disciplines. These are medals, cups, sports and tourist badges, clothes and sports equipment belonging to true sports legends. Among them, you can see Janusz Kusociński (Olympic Champion from Los Angeles from 1932), generał Mariusz Zaruski (pioneer of Polish sailing), Wanda Rutkiewicz (one of the world’s most outstanding mountaineers), sailor Mateusz Kusznierewicz, swimmer Otylia Jędrzejczak, jumper Adam Robert Małysz and Adam Korzeniowski. In 2021, the collection was enriched with such new Iga Świątek’s tennis racket from the Roland Garros tournament, Robet Kubica’s F1 suit and Bartosz Zarzlik’s seedway motorcycle.
Visitors are also attracted by an extremely interesting exhibit, which is the canoe used by Karol Wojtyła on sail on the Masurian lakes before he was elected Pope.
The collection also includes the smallest Olympic book in history and unique memorabilia from 1940 after the International Conspiracy Prisoner of War Olympics in Stalag XIIIA Langwasser near Nuremberg.
The museum also features sculptures, paintings, graphic, artistic medals and sports textiles, as well philatelic and numismatic collections. You can also find 15 thousand photographs, 16 thousand books and over 2 thousand documents and archives, including newsreels and audio recordings.
The Sports and Tourism Museum in Warsaw hosts regular fairs for collectors of sports memorabilia and the Review of Alpine Films of Wanda Rutkiewicz (every year in May).
The museum is located in the modern building of the Olympic Center. The architecture of the building refers to the symbolism ofthe Olympic idea -the lift shaft resembles a candle, and the roof – a sports stadium. In front of the building there is a sculpture of the outstanding Polish sculptor Igor Mitoraj “Ikaro Alato”.
Current visiting hours, information on temporary exhibits, ticket prices and guided tours can be found on the website www.muzeumsportu.waw.pl
You should allow at least 1 hour to visit the entire exhibition.
How to get to the Museum
The Olympic Center is located at 14 Wybrzeże Gdyńskie. The buses (on demand), nr 114, 118 and 185, the nearest metro station Plac Wilsona is approx. 1200 m from the building.
There is a small car park near the center with a limited number of free spaces; paid parking is located on the north side of the building. There are parking lots for disabled in front of the building.
A bicycle path runs by the Olympic Center (along Wybrzeże Gdyńskie and Gwiaździsta Street), and there are bicycle stand in front of the building, The nearest Veturilo stations are on the corner of Gwiaździsta and Promyka streets (500 m from the museum) and at the southern entrance to KS Spójnia (800m from the museum).