What to do in a weekend in Krakow
A weekend in Krakow
Krakow was our first stop in Poland, very intense both for the number of things we saw and for the emotions we felt.
We arrived in the afternoon and we passed our first day in the city.
All the things we saw were concentrated near the central square and we’ll talk about it above.
Krakow offers a lot of other things in the surroundings and we used our second day to discover two wonderful UNESCO sites.
In this long walk discovering Krakow we understood how much we have to learn about how to care about tourism and we talk about it in the point 4. of this post.
Are you ready?
1. Rynek Glowny
It’s the beautiful central square and, once in Krakow, this must be your first stop!
If you arrive there during the day, you will discover a colourful square full of stalls selling flower garlands and carts with bretzen.
In the evening, you’ll discover a different square. With super sumptuous carriages roaming tourists and lots of kids filling the streets.
Small note: the Poles drink a lot but no one will bother you, the only uncivilized are often tourists without the iron stomach of the locals.
We had a great time and we met only super friendly and willing people.
You can take a walk in the square to buy souvenirs in Swietego Jana, a street full of shops. Obviously in Cracow, you’ll not use Euros but everyone accepts credit cards and debit cards. We didn’t see Poles using cash, so we didn’t change Euros (also because they proposed a scary change).
2. St Mary’s Basilica
St Mary’s Basilica is in the central square, Rynek Glowny.
We found a bit weird the way they manage tourists in the basilica.
They split the church with ropes and tourists can access the nearest part of the altar only by the side entrances paying a small sum for the entrance.
The main entrance, on the other hand, is reserved for the faithful (no fees obviously) and dozens of controllers who scrutinize every move you do because taking photographs in this area of the Church is strictly forbidden.
You must stop here during your walk into the town, it’s really wonderful!
All the information you need to organize your visit are on their official website.
3. Cloth Hall
Right in the centre of the square, a beautiful palace houses in the ground floor the cloth hall and a Polish painting gallery on the first floor.
Here you will find every kind of souvenirs, including hand-painted Christmas balls for sale throughout the year. You are in the tourist heart of the city so prices are quite high compared to the average, but there is a lot of craftsmanship and not just industrial rubbish.
4. Salt mines
Even if your visit to Krakow lasts only 24 hours, you have to find absolutely the way to include a visit to the salt mines.
On the official website you’ll find ALL the informations useful to organize your visit as tickets’ price, guided tours and how to reach the mines from the city.
The site is well done and is perfect to organize your visit.
How did ours go?
We walked for three hours visiting more than 20 rooms accompanied by a guide who spoke an absolutely impeccable Italian.
You’ll read that often people feels like guides go very fast, it’s not the truth. In fact they are always very available to answer any questions. But you must consider that thousands of people go there every day and everyone must have the chance to watch every part of this incredible place.
In the mines we have been enchanted by the stories of the Princess Kinga and by the church made entirely by salt.
Guess what surprised us more?
To find out how much this immense resource has been valued!
Lights shows, simulations and musical performances in this incredible playground. We would really have so much to learn about tourism enhancement.
There is really nothing to tell about it, only that everyone should go there at least once in life.
It’s one of those places that leaves you in and out just so much silence.
Some practical information on the visit may be helpful.
It’s not true that you can only enter with guides, the entrance is also open to private people in both camps. “Both” because the fields are two and are about 3 km apart. Auschwitz 2 – Birkenau is the field where you can still see the tracks but without a guide (paper or not) you will understand very little because there are only few indications. The entrance is completely free.
Auschwitz 1 is the most touristic one and the tour lasts about three hours, considering there may be some queue at the entrance due to the metal detector. Admission is free but still consider a minimum expense:
- you still have to take the ticket from a barrack to the right of the entrance
- getting in without physical guide involves buying at least a paper guide (if you want to understand something) we bought it from the library to the right of the entrance spending 16 ZTL (about 4 Euros)
- the car park costs 8 ZTL (about 2 Euros) even with the motorbike
- the wardrobe where you must leave backpacks and bags, costs 4 ZTL (1 Euro each).
We were really impressed by the life and beauty of this city that is slowly coming up with its tourism boom like all of Poland and is greatly managing it.
If you have any doubts or curiosity about this city leave them in the comments!
- Fai clic per condividere su Facebook (Si apre in una nuova finestra)
- Fai clic qui per condividere su Twitter (Si apre in una nuova finestra)
- Fai clic qui per condividere su Pinterest (Si apre in una nuova finestra)
- Fai clic qui per inviare l'articolo via mail ad un amico (Si apre in una nuova finestra)
- Fai clic qui per stampare (Si apre in una nuova finestra)