What to do in Krakow.
Going on a trip, there is always a question of what to do, where to go, what to see, well, etc. So, what is better to do in Krakow?
As I have already told in Krakow there is a large number of historical monuments. Walking around the city you will constantly meet various churches, old buildings, etc. I will not list you all, I will just tell you about the most interesting places.
1. Market Square. Market Square is the heart of Krakow. There is located all major attractions of this city. Also, the Market Square is a meeting point and a venue for various events. Market Square is the largest medieval square in Europe, its dimensions are 200 m by 200 m.
2. St. Mary’s Basilica. St. Mary’s Basilica is one of the main attractions of Krakow. Firstly, it is one of the most beautiful basilicas in Poland.
Secondly, in that basilica is located St. Mary’s Altar made by Veit Stoss. The height of the altar is 13 meters and width of 11 meters and it is the largest medieval wooden altar in Europe. For the establishment of the altar Veit Stoss spend 12 years, and it is the main product of the author’s life.
And thirdly, because from the highest tower of the basilica (81 m) every hour a trumpeter gives a signal to the exact time, which is called St. Mary’s Trumpet Call.
Earlier, this signal served to inform the people about a fire or attack of enemies. Today, it is one of the good traditions that have survived to our times.
By the way, how a trumpeter plays on a trumpet, you can admire from the street and from inside the tower. To see from the street, is enough to be in the Main Square every hour. To see inside, is enough to buy a ticket and they will allow you to climb to the top of the tower by a long wooden ladder. And you can get acquainted with the trumpeter, enjoy his play and see the Market Square from a height of 81 m. I’ve heard from the local residents, that not everyone can be a trumpeter. They should pass some special school and what is more important they must be from the family of one trumpeter.
3. The Wawel Royal Castle. On top of the Wawel hill is located the Wawel Royal Castle, which was rebuilt over the centuries, and that is why today it is a mixture of three styles: Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance. You can stroll through the castle grounds is free, but to admire the lock from the inside, you have to pay.
By the way, the most “fun” exhibition in the castle, in my opinion, it is a chance to have a look at the original painting by Leonardo da Vinci “Woman with an Ermine”. You will be prompted to go to one of the rooms of the castle, in which will be located this picture. But in this room will be only the picture and nothing more. Fortunately, the organizers have provided outrage tourists, so they using one of the rooms, which is located near the balcony, from which you can enjoy the beauty of the castle courtyard and feel like a queen. Well, at least some moral compensation is exist.
And after, from the courtyard of the castle, you can go down to the “Dragon’s Den”. Really terrible dungeon, you’ll go down the spiral staircase down, then get into the dark cave, and when you finally find yourself back on the street, you will find with surprise that you are outside of the castle.
4. The Wieliczka Salt Mine. Salt Mine located in town Wieliczka, it’s a bit outside the Krakow, about 30 minutes away by car. You can go there by organized tour, then you will be picked up from your hotel, transfer to the Wieliczka Salt Mine, will provide a guide, well, etc. Or, you can go there on your own, by car or public transport. Buy tickets at the ticket office, at any favorite tour and enjoy visiting.
What is important to know is:
– You can’t go down by yourself. So, you must to go down with the guide.
– You can choice one of the tours. One is informative and another is practise. In one of that you will go down and listen the story about Salt Mine. In another one you can be in the role of a miner and do part of the work what they are doing every day.
– Under the ground is cold enough, take a warm jacket.
For me, the most memorable memories of visiting the mine, was the rise out on the two-tier mining elevator. I can not even describe it, I advise you to go down, and try for yourself.
5. The Church of Saints Peter and Paul. The Church of Saints Peter and Paul is very beautiful church. And attracts visitors from outside by the fact that inside of the church hangs the longest in Poland Foucault pendulum. Every Thursday you can watch experience, in which the pendulum is moving and you can see the Earth’s rotation about its axis.
6. Church of St Michael the Archangel and St Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr and Pauline Fathers Monastery, Skałka, which means “a small rock” in Polish. Skałka is a temple built in the tenth century. Down in the crypt of great personalities, are the graves of famous Poles.
7. Kazimierz (Jewish Quarter). Kazimierz was founded in the 14th century by King Kazimierz the Great as a separate town. From the 15th century until the Second World War in the north-eastern part of Kazimierz was the Jewish living area. After the war, Kazimierz was deserted and abandoned, but in recent years this place is becoming popular again. Kazimierz is the second in Europe (after Prague’s Josefov) such a large and valuable set of Jewish attractions, but about this is what I’ll tell you in the next article. Today, Kazimierz is a district of Krakow.
Have you already been in Krakow? What did you visit? Write in the comments your impressions about the trip!