I do Denmark to Częstochowa area of southern Poland as I work mostly in DK, but as an English man I have done West Yorkshire to Częstochowa perhaps 15 times in my life. Its more expensive, but I use the Hull to Rotterdam ferry. I don't like driving in the UK, its the one country I try not to drive in, its not worth the 6 hours to Dover for a cheap crossing, my choice. For the extra money to sail this route I get an overnight sailing and we are on the Dutch roads at 8.30 and from there we get home around 22.00 - 23.00.
Without I sat nav I would have thought finding your way around the dutch motor way network a struggle, you need to study a map and make sure you know which cities to aim for. We cross at Venlo into Germany. As stated before its often the case you pull out to overtake with no one behind you then your rear view mirror is full of German flashing headlamps seconds later, don't worry they are just happy to see you . Its a busy road with a lot of trucks crossing Germany, its a relief to get near Berlin and the last leg. I head towards Dresden and I cross at the German border near Forst. No passports to show, you still go through the old border control, so please slow down :-) There will be some customs bods hanging around.
The first 80km of motorway is hell. It used to be an A road which has been upgraded to a dual carriage. The old A road goes into Poland and the new one takes the traffic out. The deal is drive in the fast lane, its less bumpy and only pull out the way to let someone past and hope your teeth do not fall out. Everyone will be doing this, so go with the flow. After that it opens up into a very good motorway all the way to Katowice and then on to Krakow on the toll road. I get a 120km of A and B roads from Opole to Częstochowa. There are lots of parking places and gas stations, the Orlens 30km into Poland has great food BBQ style.
If you are going to northern Poland you will cross at Frankfurt Odder and they are doing a motorway link as I understand, but for now you have 120km of A road and most of Eastern Europe using it. Its a fast route, no one is hanging about. If someone is hanging on your rear bumper then try to run on the sort of hard shoulder and let them through, you may feel everyone is a mad driver, but they all do it, so it will be only you that is fact the hazzard, anyway is great fun to do 130 kph overtake on a row of trucks into oncoming traffic, it just is I love it. Beware this route has many cameras now and if you see flashing headlamps from oncoming traffic, slow down it will be a Police speed trap.
From around Nowy Tomysl there is the A2/E30 a newish toll motorway which points you towards Poznan/Warszawa and beyond.
As for winter tyres, I came into Poland from Denmark a few years ago with my DK car as snow hit, I bought a set while in Poland and found them to help a lot, but of course weigh up the cost option. We live in a village 18km before we get a treated road so come winter I change over. I had a PL van in the UK last January when the Bradford area got snow, a few cars following me never made corners, so I do believe winter wheels is a good thing.
I will put my neck out here as Brit and say I love driving here. I think we in the UK or perhaps the western world in general feel that driving should be a craft to hone, god forbid anyone should criticize your driving prowess. I would say here in Poland they do not have that feeling of driving excellence and rather just want to get from A to B as fast as possible. This might appear to have appearance of manic idiots to Western eyes, but join in its great fun, its my favorite place to drive.