ORP Blyskawica

Gdynia, Poland

ORP Błyskawica is a Grom-class destroyer which served in the Polish Navy during World War II and is the only ship of the Polish Navy awarded the Virtuti Militari medal. It is preserved as a museum ship in Gdynia, the oldest preserved destroyer in the world. It was the second of two Grom-class destroyers, built for the Polish Navy by J. Samuel White, Cowes in 1935–37. The name means Lightning. The two Groms were some of the most heavily-armed and fastest destroyers on the seas before World War II.

Two days before the war, on 30 August 1939, the Błyskawica withdrew, along with the destroyers Grom and Burza, from the Baltic Sea to Britain in accordance with the Peking Plan to avoid open conflict with Germany and possible destruction. From then on they acted in tandem with the Royal Navy's Home Fleet.

During the World War II Błyskawica took part in convoy and patrol duties in Norwegian Coast, Atlantic and Mediterranean. On 7 September 1939, Błyskawica made contact with and attacked a U-Boat, possibly the first combat between the Allied and the German fleets.

After the war, the ship returned to Poland. Since 1 May 1976, it has served as a museum ship in Gdynia.



Your name


Founded: 1935-1937
Category: Museums in Poland


4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Lukasz Sopala (29 days ago)
Awesome museum, reasonably short, took less than an hour to go through it, but is responsibly priced, had an awesome time there as someone who's interested in military history. Very educational too, learnt more about the history of this beautiful vessel and it's sisters.
Paul Shorney (8 months ago)
It's nice to see a well preserved piece of history. Well maintained, clean, looked after and well thought out. Signs and information in both Polish and English, taking time to explain the complicated history of this WW2 destroyer that also served as the Polish navy during Warsaw pact times. Tickets not cheap but well worth the investment and money well spent My only gripe is I would have liked to get a model of the ship but none of the local shops stocked anything other than a cheap Chinese tat one
Andrew Andrews (9 months ago)
Fantastic Museum of Polish Navy History. ORP "Błyskawica" call by many as LUCKY Destroyer survived WWII.
kacper123ful (10 months ago)
Beautiful pic of polish history I wish they open more rooms on this ship so we can enjoy more
Miles Macdonald (2 years ago)
Wonderful Destroyer with an interesting story behind it. It was commissioned in 1935 to be built in the UK and entered service before WW2 based in Gdynia. It managed to flee with other Polish ships to the UK in 1939 before the Germans invaded Poland and then acieved distinguished service alongside the British Navy particularly in the Norwegian area. It returned to be based Poland in 1947. The ship is so complete you feel it could almost set sail tomorrow. You start your tour in the Museum section of the ship which gives you it's history before going into the bowels of the Destroyer and seeing the Engine Room/Boiler Room etc. Finally finish with exploring the deck. Thoroughly recommend, easily spend an hour here.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

The Church of the Holy Cross

The church of the former Franciscan monastery was built probably between 1515 and 1520. It is located in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Rauma. The church stands by the small stream of Raumanjoki (Rauma river).

The exact age of the Church of the Holy Cross is unknown, but it was built to serve as the monastery church of the Rauma Franciscan Friary. The monastery had been established in the early 15th century and a wooden church was built on this location around the year 1420.

The Church of the Holy Cross served the monastery until 1538, when it was abandoned for a hundred years as the Franciscan friary was disbanded in the Swedish Reformation. The church was re-established as a Lutheran church in 1640, when the nearby Church of the Holy Trinity was destroyed by fire.

The choir of the two-aisle grey granite church features medieval murals and frescoes. The white steeple of the church was built in 1816 and has served as a landmark for seafarers.