The overlooked Eastern European riviera with white sandy beaches & cheap booze – under 3 hours from UK

IF YOU want a European beach holiday with sandy beaches and cheap booze, then we’ve found the pocket-friendly holiday destination just a few hours from the UK.

And with cheap flights and hotels, it won’t break the bank this summer either.

Set in northern Poland, Sopot is home to white sandy beaches and blue waters


Set in northern Poland, Sopot is home to white sandy beaches and blue watersCredit: Alamy
Sopot has been nicknamed the "Polish Riviera" in recent years


Sopot has been nicknamed the “Polish Riviera” in recent yearsCredit: Alamy
Brit holidaymakers wishing to visit Sopot should fly to nearby Gdansk Airport


Brit holidaymakers wishing to visit Sopot should fly to nearby Gdansk AirportCredit: Getty

Why Sopot?

While most Brits flock to the French or Italian Riviera, a town in Eastern Europe offers a much more affordable alternative.

The seaside town of Sopot has been nicknamed the “Polish Riviera” thanks to its white sandy beach and blue coastline.

Set on the Baltic Sea in northern Poland, Sopot is home to a white sandy beach, blue waters, and the longest wooden pier in Europe.

The country doesn’t use the euro either, so you can get much more for your money when booking trips and when on holiday.

Food and drink is cheap too, with a bottle of beer costing as little £1, meanwhile, a meal out at a mid-range restaurant will cost around £12 per person.

When booking a trip, the summer is the best time to visit, with highs of 22C.

Hotels are extremely affordable too with a night at the Haffner Hotel & SPA Sopot, a five-star hotel and spa, costing as little as £86 per person per night.

Despite this bargain luxury stay, holidaymakers can also book to stay in a variety of three-star hotels including Anchor House SopotOpens for as little as £34 per night per person.

How do I get there?

The easiest way to reach Sopot is to fly to nearby Gdansk Airport.

Both Ryanair and Wizzair operate direct flights from a range of UK Airports including London Stansted, Leeds, Edinburgh, Liverpool, and Bristol.

Sun Online Travel has found one-way tickets starting from £13 during the school summer holidays, and the flight takes just over two hours from the UK.

From Gdansk Airport, it’s a 25-minute drive to the Polish town of Sopot.

For those holidaymakers who don’t want to hire a car, taxi services are also in operation from the airport and cost £10 for a one-way journey.

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What is there to do in Sopot?

There’s plenty to do on the “Polish Riviera” too.

Running along the Baltic Sea, Sopot has over 500m of coastline including Sopot Beach.

The white sandy beach is a haven for holidaymakers and has plenty of amenities including beachfront restaurants like Bulaj and Koliba.

Visitors to the beach can rent sunloungers and parasols – although most beachgoers simply bring their towels.

While holidaymakers can swim in the sea, it’ll be a bracing dip in the Baltic waters.

The beach is also home to other activities too including boat tours and water sports like flyboarding.

Another popular tourist attraction is Sopot Pier.

At 511m, it’s the longest wooden Pier in Europe with views of both the Baltic Sea and the Polish coastline, entry tickets cost 8 zloty (£1.55).

Meanwhile, in the heart of the old town, there are also other attractions too including Sopot Lighthouse.

Originally built as part of a spa, the lighthouse has now become a panoramic viewpoint for holidaymakers, entry tickets cost 9 zloty (£1.75).

There’s also Monte Cassino Street, which is the town’s main shopping street.

As well as being home to a string of shops and restaurants, there are a handful of tourist attractions dotted along the road.

There’s the crooked House, also known as Krzywy Domek, which was built in 2004 by Polish architects Szotyncsy & Zaleski.

Inside the unusually-shaped building are a string of shops and restaurants.

There are also plenty of religious buildings dotted throughout the town including the Garrison Church of St. George, which is also on Monte Cassino Street.

Other activities in Sopot include a visit to the Sopot Museum, which showcases a collection of 19th Century furniture.

What else is there to do in Poland?

As well as a visit to the Polish Riviera, Brit holidaymakers who are chasing the sun can also visit Hel Peninsula, which is considered to be “paradise on earth” by some avid beachgoers.

Nestled on the Baltic Coaster and stretching 21 miles, Hel Peninsula is becoming popular with beach-goers looking for a cheap getaway.

Hel is also known for its majestic lighthouse, being the highest point on the island, it offers stunning panoramic vistas of the peninsula.

Brit tourists who are after a city break will be pleased to know that Poland is home to plenty of those too.

First of all, there’s Karakow with its well-preserved medieval market town.

Meanwhile, the country’s capital Warsaw has more modern attractions including the Palace of Culture and Science, which offers great views across the city.

What else do I need to know about the Sopot?

The local language is Polish but you can expect English to be spoken at some hotels and restaurants.

There is a one-hour time difference, with the UK one hour behind.

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The currency is Polish Zloty with £10 currently worth around 52 Zloty.

Brits can stay in Poland for up to 90 days without a visa.

Sopot also has a main shopping street called Monte Cassino Street with shops and restaurants


Sopot also has a main shopping street called Monte Cassino Street with shops and restaurantsCredit: Getty
Holidaymakers can rent sunloungers along the beachfront


Holidaymakers can rent sunloungers along the beachfrontCredit: Alamy
The Polish town is also home to the longest wooden pier in Europe


The Polish town is also home to the longest wooden pier in EuropeCredit: Alamy

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