My time in Kraków was extremely brief. It was in the middle of my backpacking through Europe and didn’t spend a lot of time researching all that Kraków has to offer. I am sure that I missed a number of attractions & bites while I spent two days in the city. That is okay because I’ll be back in Poland in the future. But, until then here are a few highlights on my few days spent in Kraków! If you want to hear the story about the time we attempted to take an overnight bunker train from Kraków to Budapest but ended up in Katowice instead after spending a few hours at a deserted bar, tasting Poland’s flavored vodka. Lesson learned, more or less.
Kraków Old Town:
The pride of Poland is the historic Old Town located in the heart of Poland. Becoming a UNESCO World Heritage List in 1978, this square is filled with untouched architecture, cobbled pathways, cellar bars and much more.
Kraków Cloth Hall: located in the middle of the square, this Renaissance dated hall is Kraków’s main market. Once the major hotspot for international trade, inside you, will find just about any souvenir you can think of and so much more.
Town Hall Tower
Auschwitz Concentration Camp
Kraków is known for its history, and as depressing as it may be; we must remember it is still a part of our history, our story of the world. As George Santayana once said, “the one who does not remember history is bound to live through it: again.”
While in Kraków, I would strongly suggest visiting Auschwitz. As hard of a chapter it is to read in our books, it is a huge part of our past. Personally, I did not feel comfortable taking photos, regardless of the permission to do so. I really cannot give you any tips regarding attending Auschwitz, but I would recommend it. But, please remember this is a part of our past and needs to be shown the proper respect. If you do decide to take pictures please be respectful. Smiling next to a hanging site should NEVER be a photo you have saved to your memory card.
Things to remember:
- You are only allowed to bring a ‘paper sized bag’ into the camp. All personal items must be left in your mode of transportation, ie: don’t bring valuables.
- Bring water. Heat stroke, sunstroke, dehydration can happen when spending a large amount of time under the sun.
- Wear comfortable shoes: you will be walking a lot.
- If you decide to book your entrance ticket through a travel company, the only difference is that they (the travel company) will provide transportation to the camp.
- Regardless of where or when you learned the information regarding this chapter of our past, please be respectful to both your guide and those that are learning around you.
- Most importantly, be respectful. You are walking through a dark chapter of our history, but a chapter nonetheless and millions of people that have been affected by this.
Until Next Time Kraków ✌🏽