Okay listen, I’m not going to say this twice: go to Krakow. Don’t even think of another destination for the next city trip. Krakow is your match! Trust me.
It’s not only the flavoured Wodka (although…) which you can taste in Wodka cafes and bars (hazelnut, cherry!!, pear, plum and raspberry are my favourites).
It’s the atmosphere, the golden light that shines on the red bricks and gothic faces of the Cloth Hall. The Wawel castel which enthrones over the Wisea river, where the group of swans will follow you.
The too-hip-to-live atmosphere in Kazimierz and the artists on Nowy Square. Plus the narrow roads which always seem to lead to another beautiful church (you know, I’m NOT into churches, but as Krakow is catholic they are so nice that it’s really worth visiting). Krakow is going to catch you and never let you go. So you’ll leave with sorrow…and the luggage filled with cherry wodka.
Town Hall Tower
The Town Hall Tower catched my eye every time I entered the Main Market Square, Krakows center, which is incredible 40.000 square meters. For those who suck – like me – in visualizing how big this is: thats about 6 football fields.
In the middle of the Square you’ll find the so called Cloth Hall, which is filled with souvenir stands offering polnish products. It was nothing a modern girl could use, but the building itself is impressive and divides the Square…which means that you can’t really get lost (another important point).
The last very important point on Main Square is…the Hard Rock cafe. Incredible view and best burgers. Okay, and the Church of St. Mary…
The higher tower is 81 meters high, and the inside is like a colourful mosaique. In front of the church you can see the iron instruments of torture, which were used for people which broke the law (for example by eating at Hard Rock Cafe).
On Main Market Square
Although you’ll know the square after surrounding it twice, you will come back several times a day, as there’ll always be interesting things to see, like this:
The Wawel Castle
The next sight your map is going to recommend is the Wawel castel. I would recommend you to take the Grodzka street for the Main Market Square, which means that you’re going to pass a lot of chocolate and shoe shops <3
But I guess you expect some infos about the royal castle? No…okay that’s fine, so I can keep telling you about unimportant facts I liked. After coming to the end of the Grodzka street, putting on 1 kilo and minus 100 Euro on the banc account, you can turn right and take the rising road which will lead you on top of the hill into the heart of the castle.
The castle offers some exhibitions, but as I have not entered I can’t rather recommend or advice you to skip it. The reviews they get are really good, so if you have time give it a try. You will see about the life of the king and the crown treasury, so if you are interested in that topics go inside.
Smok Wawelski – Dragons Den
Once upon a time Krakow was the home of a dragon – Smok – who liked nothing more than eating local maidens. But who doeen’t. As the village ran out of virgins (the statistics showed a crazy picture) the king promised his daughter to the one who…etc. A poor cobbler named Krak (poor because of THAT name) tricked Smok into eating a sheep stuffed with sulphur. And with immense thirst the dragon (as the virgins always tasted sweet) went and drank half of the river, so his belly exploded and the town was free (although lacking drinking water). Krak married the princess (let’s hope his surname was nicer), became king and buuild Wawels castel on the dragons lair. And the city around was named Krakow.
The dragons den is a treat for kids and kids-remained like me. You can climb through the tower and enter the cave under it. A short walk through the dark will lead you to the dragon figure, which will spew fire every 5 minutes.
Hip enough for Kazimierz!?
The jewish quater is THE hip place to be in Krakow. Alternative-but not too – bars, restaurants and shops can be discovered there. If you walk along the river from the castle, you should turn left into Paulinska street (the street before the Peter & Paul cathedral), which is sort of my favourite street around Kazimierz.
Oskar Schindlers Factory
It’s not only where the film was made. It’s the place where history was made! At Lipowa Street No 4 there is the former enamel factory, where Oskar Schindler employed the jews form Krakow first in order to make his fortune – by which he meant lots of money for woman, drinks and fast cars.
After he witnessed the assault in the jewsih getto, he started to save jews by using bribes and his nsdap contacts. He saved 1200 people, and whoever saves one life, saves the world entire.
Schindlers desk and a range of the enamel goods he produced, far too much as was needed, but to be able to employee so many people.
Where the list was typed, as some of you remember from the movie. In this room you can as well listen to videos of the jews who worked in Schindlers factory and therefore survived.
St Florians Gate
It’s just a tower which you’ll find following Florianska road from the Main Square. On this street you’ll find affordape shops, but don’t expect too much: all brand are mainstream.
Okay now in the end what have you of course noticed? It was easy wasn’t it, far too easy, I know. But Krakow really seems to consist of TOWERS. Tower everywhere you are an on every picture you take. You know what: I like towers!
Na zdrowie on that!