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For its stature, Krakow certainly packs a sightseeing punch, with landmark architecture, medieval palaces and hard-hitting museums. It’s also blessed with a well-priced shopping scene, a buzzing nightlife and the best of world cuisines. Although three days can barely scratch the surface, following this three-day itinerary guide will help you glimpse right into the heart of Poland's most entrancing city.

Good for
  • History Buff
  • Art and Architecture Lover
  • Nightlife Seeker
  • Foodie
  • Thrifty Traveller
  • Trendsetter

12 Places

3 City Tips

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12 Places

Day 1

Main Market Square

Historic Walking Areas, Points of Interest & Landmarks

Church of the Virgin Mary (Kosciol Mariacki)

Religious Sites, Architectural Buildings

Cloth Hall (Sukiennice)

Historic Sites, Shopping Malls

Rynek Underground

Speciality Museums

Wierzynek

Restaurants

Day 2

Wawel Royal Castle

Castles, Historic Sites, Historic Walking Areas

Oskar Schindler's Factory

Speciality Museums

Galicia Jewish Museum

Speciality Museums

Jewish District (Kazimierz)

Neighbourhoods, Historic Walking Areas

Stara Zajezdnia Krakow By DeSilva

Restaurants

Day 3

Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum

Speciality Museums

Chopin Concerts Bonerowski Palace

Theatre & Performances

Sasha H's City Tips

  • The Krakow Tourist Card offers two- or three-day packages of free travel on all public transport as well as free entry into up to 30 museums in the city.
  • A tip of around 10% is expected in Krakow restaurants; leave it in cash rather than adding the amount to your credit card bill.
  • Krakow is a sophisticated city and not a seaside resort, so don't dress as though you're bound for the beach! (And always dress respectfully when visiting the many churches.)
    Day 1
  • Save
    Main Market Square
    Historic Walking Areas, Points of Interest & Landmarks
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Poland’s most beautiful medieval market square is also its biggest; at 200 square meters the Rynek Główny (Main Market Square) is the social hub of Krakow, lined with pastel-colored townhouses and clusters of cafes and restaurants that spread onto the cobblestones in summer. It should be your number-one stop for the horse-and-carriage tours, the flower stalls, the weekend antiques market and the never-ending supply of jugglers and living statues. If that’s not enough, the Rynek is also home to three of Krakow’s biggest attractions: St Mary’s Basilica, the Cloth Hall and the city’s newest, glossiest museum: the Rynek Underground.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Must See
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The easiest meeting place in the square is by the central Adam Mickiewicz statue.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Music in all quarters 06/07/2015
    • Beautiful market square 06/07/2015
    • Main Market Square
    Address:
    Center of Old Town
    Krakow
    Poland
    Other:
  • Save
    Church of the Virgin Mary (Kosciol Mariacki)
    Religious Sites, Architectural Buildings
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Occupying pole position at the southeast corner of the Rynek is the misleadingly plain red-brick exterior of St Mary’s Basilica, chiefly admired for its mismatched spires; the northern tower stands 80 meters high and it is here that the traditional hourly bugle call rings out across the city. The interior of the church could not be more different — a mad Baroque frenzy of adornment, where a sky-blue ceiling scattered with gold stars competes for attention with gleaming stained-glass windows, patterned marble flooring and altar paintings by 19th-century masters. And yet all of this is outshone still by the immense, intricately carved altarpiece, one of Poland’s artistic treasures and the best work of sculptor Veit Stoss, who was much in demand for his wood-carving skills in 15th-century central Europe.

    Good for
    • Peace and Quiet Seeker
    • Must See
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The Veit Stoss altarpiece is unveiled Monday to Saturday at 11.50am to reveal the delicate carvings of the Virgin Mary painted in blue and gold.
    Plan to stay:
    Less than 1 hour
    From the community
    Ranked #4 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Worth a visit 06/07/2015
    • Stunning ceilings. 06/07/2015
    • Church of the Virgin Mary (Kosciol Mariacki)
    Address:
    Plac Mariacki 5
    Krakow
    Poland
    Other:
  • Save
    Cloth Hall (Sukiennice)
    Historic Sites, Shopping Malls
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Sitting smack in the middle of the Rynek, the Cloth Hall (Sukiennice) has its origins in medieval times and started life as a medieval trading hall — the world’s first undercover shopping mall. Today its delicate, Neo-Gothic proportions hide a souvenir-hunter’s paradise on its ground floor, with scores of market stalls flogging brightly costumed wooden puppets, hand-painted eggs, cheery textiles and decently-priced amber and jet jewelry. It has a surprise on the upper floor too, in the shape of the glorious but sadly often-overlooked gallery of 19th-century Polish Art (Galeria Sztuki Polskiej XIX Wieku), displaying vast historical canvasses by Jan Matejko and abstract work by the nation’s favorite, Witkacy.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    • Shopping Fanatic
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • The Cloth Hall looks awesome when floodlit at night.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #31 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great building. 06/07/2015
    • get all your gifts bought here 03/07/2015
    • Cloth Hall (Sukiennice)
    Address:
    Rynek Glowny 1 - 3
    Krakow
    Poland
    Phone:
    012 422 11 66
    Other:
  • Save
    Rynek Underground
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Krakow’s newest, flashiest museum has been carved out – at vast expense – directly underneath the Cloth Hall and sits at the medieval level of the city. It provides a thoughtful jaunt through the historical and cultural development of Krakow using clever multi-media presentations, interactive models, touch-screens and multi-lingual labeling. Highlights include walking among the excavated walls of the medieval marketplace, getting weighed in medieval units and the films showcasing Poland’s past.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Kids love this museum for treating a dusty subject with the very lightest of touches; it is both informative and fun — if only all museums were the same!
    • Buy timed tickets in advance of your visit (from the office at the rear of the Cloth Hall) as only 300 people are permitted entry at a time.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #18 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Rynoc Krakow Underground Museum 06/07/2015
    • Old History of Krakow 03/07/2015
    • Rynek Underground
    Address:
    Rynek Glowny 1
    Krakow 31-042
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 12 426-50-60
    Hours:
    Mon
    10:00 - 1:00
    Tue
    10:00 - 21:00
    Wed - Fri
    10:00 - 1:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Wierzynek
    Restaurants (Polish, Cafe, Vegetarian)
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    The oldest restaurant in Krakow (Wierzynek opened its doors in 1364) is also one of its best, with elegant surroundings, historic portraits and weaponry on the walls, decorative timbered ceilings and suitably hushed service. The excellent menu teams the very finest of Polish cuisine with contemporary flair to produce dishes such as venison tartar and wild boar goulash.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Luxury Traveller
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Dress up for an evening at Wierzynek; jeans and sneakers just won't do!
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #69 of 853 restaurants in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Great service and wonderful food 06/07/2015
    • Dinner 05/07/2015
    • Wierzynek
    Address:
    Rynek Glowny 16
    Ist and 2nd Floor
    Krakow 31-008
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 12 424 96 00
    Price range:
    $6 - $57
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    13:00 - 4:00
    Other:
  • Day 2
  • Save
    Wawel Royal Castle
    Castles, Historic Sites, Historic Walking Areas
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    At the end of Krakow’s Royal Route — the path taken by medieval Polish kings on their way to their coronation — Wawel Castle sits on a hill south of the Old Town and is Poland’s emotional heart. This jumble of palace, chapels, cathedral, colonnaded courtyards, armories and crypts sits behind fortified walls and was built in a clash of Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance styles from the 14th century onwards. Highlights of a visit here include Poland’s Crown Jewels in the treasury; the royal tombs and Russian murals in the cathedral; and the highly decorative apartments and state art collections in the castle.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • History Buff
    • Art and Architecture Lover
    Tips
    • Audio-guides are available for the exhibitions in different languages (Polish, English, German, Russian and French).
    Plan to stay:
    2-3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #13 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Stunning! 06/07/2015
    • Great place to visit. 06/07/2015
    • Wawel Royal Castle
    Address:
    Wawel 5
    Krakow 31-001
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 12 422 51 55
    Hours:
    Sun
    10:00 - 21:00
    Tue - Sat
    9:30 - 21:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Oskar Schindler's Factory
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Immortalized by Spielberg’s award-winning film Schindler’s List, Oskar Schindler was a Nazi who saved the lives of hundreds of Polish Jews by employing them in his enamel factory. Today that factory operates as a profoundly moving museum of the Holocaust in Krakow, utilizing graphic images, 3D dioramas, video testimonies and interactive displays that run chronologically from the arrival of the Nazis in 1939, through the gradual extinction of the city and its inhabitants in the death camps of Płaszów and Auschwitz-Birkenau, and on to liberation in 1945.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    Tips
    • If time allows, pop into the contemporary art museum MOCAK next door.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #11 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Moving but overwhelming 06/07/2015
    • Good history lesson 06/07/2015
    • Oskar Schindler's Factory
    Address:
    ul. Lipowa 4
    Krakow
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 12 257 10 17
    Hours:
    Mon
    10:00 - 19:00
    Tue - Sun
    10:00 - 23:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Galicia Jewish Museum
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    An award-winning and minuscule museum in Kazimierz, Galicia features a heart-warming collection of rarely seen images of Jewish life during the 20 years around World War II, as well as an exhibition celebrating Jewish culture in Eastern Europe. It is strangely almost unknown on the Krakow tourist trail, which makes a visit doubly worth the effort.

    Good for
    • Hidden Gems
    • History Buff
    Tips
    • The Galicia Jewish Museum has a superb bookshop.
    From the community
    Ranked #32 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Moving experience 05/07/2015
    • Outstanding photography 04/07/2015
    • Galicia Jewish Museum
    Address:
    Dajwor Street 18
    Krakow 31-052
    Poland
    Phone:
    (0048)12 4216842
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    10:00 - 23:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Jewish District (Kazimierz)
    Neighbourhoods, Historic Walking Areas
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Buzzy Kazimierz is the former Jewish ghetto that today houses some of the wackiest, most stylish independent stores, art galleries, bars and clubs in Krakow. It’s best to tour the tangle of streets and hidden courtyards off the main square of Plac Nowy and find a spot that suits your mood to sit back with a coffee and watch bohemian Krakow pass by.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Must See
    • Like a Local
    • History Buff
    • Nightlife Seeker
    Tips
    • 15 years ago Kazimierz was all but abandoned, but today many of its old churches, synagogues and cemeteries have been refurbished and are open to visitors.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #15 of 243 things to do in Krakow
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Interesting area 06/07/2015
    • Somber 06/07/2015
    • Jewish District (Kazimierz)
    Address:
    Szeroka 24
    Krakow 30-527
    Poland
    Other:
  • Save
    Stara Zajezdnia Krakow By DeSilva
    Restaurants (Polish, Noodle)
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    Krakow’s grandest beer hall is also one of its most popular; you may have to stand in line at the city’s longest bar to get your hands on a glass of home-brewed honey beer but the taste will be worth it. This is also the place for sampling good-old Polish home cooking, as Stara Zajezdnia cooks up dishes such as pork schnitzel and pierogi (dumplings stuffed with meat or cheese) at a cracking price.

    Good for
    • Foodie
    • Like a Local
    • Nightlife Seeker
    Tips
    • If you're up for a late night, Stara Zajezdnia has the best selection of whiskies in Krakow.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #486 of 853 restaurants in Krakow
    • Don't Waste Your Time 16/06/2015
    • The worst service in Krakow. 14/06/2015
    • Stara Zajezdnia Krakow By DeSilva
    Address:
    Ul. Sw. Wawrzynca 12
    Krakow 31-060
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 664 323 988
    Hours:
    Mon - Fri
    15:00 - 4:00
    Sat - Sun
    12:00 - 4:00
    Other:
  • Day 3
  • Save
    Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum
    Speciality Museums
    See more photos
    Sasha H Says:

    After getting a feel for Krakow city, it’s time to bite the bullet and visit Auschwitz in otherwise-unremarkable Oświęcim, west of Krakow. Touring the site of the systematic extermination of 1.1 million Jews, gypsies, homosexuals and Soviet prisoners of war is never going to be easy, but it’s a deeply emotional and thought-provoking experience. A guided tour of the museum reveals austere prison blocks, the execution yard, and the only remaining solitary gas chamber, standing silent witness to the hundreds of thousands who died there. At Birkenau you’ll spot the iconic railway arch through which cramped trains brought throngs of unsuspecting prisoners to their deaths; at the far end of the decaying rows of wooden barracks there’s a stone memorial that provides the only flicker of hope in this devastating reminder of the Holocaust.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • History Buff
    Tips
    • There are hourly trains between Oświęcim and Krakow, regular buses depart from the main bus station, or the 75km journey takes 90 minutes by car.
    Plan to stay:
    More than 3 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #1 of 3 things to do in Oswiecim
    Certificate of Excellence 2014Certificate of Excellence 2014
    • Everyone should come here once 06/07/2015
    • A bit too Hollywood for me 06/07/2015
    • Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum
    Address:
    ul. Wiezniow Oswiecimia 20
    Oswiecim
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 33 843 21 33
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    8:00 - 0:00
    Other:
  • Save
    Chopin Concerts Bonerowski Palace
    Theatre & Performances
    Sasha H Says:

    Fryderyk Chopin is Poland’s best-loved composer and an uplifting evening unwinding to his tinkling piano concertos is one of the best after-dark activities you can opt for in Krakow. Regular concerts are held in a 16th-century Gothic-paneled hall in the elegant Bonerowski Palace on the Rynek.

    Good for
    • Must See
    • Hidden Gems
    • Solo
    • Friends
    • Couples
    • Senior
    • Nightlife Seeker
    Tips
    • Enjoy a post-concert snack in the Bonerowski Palace's Burlesque Music Club.
    Plan to stay:
    1-2 hours
    From the community
    Ranked #2 of 18 Theatre & Concerts in Krakow
    • An intimate Chopin Concert 28/06/2015
    • Very talented pianist 26/06/2015
    • Chopin Concerts Bonerowski Palace
    Address:
    1 Sw. Jana Street
    14 Sławkowska Street
    Krakow
    Poland
    Phone:
    +48 604 093 570
    Hours:
    Sun - Sat
    19:00 - 1:15
    Other:
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