With around 775,000 inhabitants (1.4 million in the agglomeration), Kraków (Polish: Kraków) is the second largest city in Poland and the capital of the Lesser Poland Voivodeship. The former capital (until 1596) and coronation city of Polish kings is one of the oldest and most beautiful cities in Poland. That is why Kraków is seen as the country's secret cultural capital.

Unlike most Polish cities, Kraków was not destroyed in World War II and thus fully documents the development of European architectural history from Romanesque to Art Nouveau, with a particularly large number of Gothic and Renaissance monuments. The medieval core city of Kraków, the Wawel Hill complex with the royal castle and cathedral and the independent city of Kazimierz until 1800 are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The city lies in the Kraków Gate, a valley along the Vistula River between the mountain ranges of the Polish Jura and the Beskids, the northern part of the Carpathians. Like Warsaw or Wroclaw, Kraków is a student city. Almost a third of Kraków's residents are students. The city was visited by around 13.5 million tourists in 2018 and is the most popular travel destination in Central Eastern Europe alongside Prague and Budapest. The majority of foreign visitors are young adults from the British Isles.

Kraków is situated on the pilgrimage and cultural routes of the Lesser Poland Way of St. James, Via Regia and Via Jagiellonica. Its Mogiła and Szklane Domy monasteries are on the Cistercian route.



The city of Kraków has been repeatedly expanded throughout its history, with formerly independent cities and municipalities being included. However, some of these have retained their own character and traditions. Some of the places incorporated in the second half of the 20th century are far from the center and still have the character of villages or small towns. According to the 1990 administrative division, Kraków is officially divided into 18 districts, which are given Roman numerals. However, not all of them are equally of tourist interest. For the purposes of this travel guide, several districts are therefore combined in one article. There is a separate article for each of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites Old Town, Wawel and Kazimierz, where most of the sights are concentrated.

Old Town – medieval Kraków within the walls of the city, as rebuilt after the Mongol invasion of 1241-1257. Here you will find the Large and Small Market Squares, the University, numerous churches and, to the south, the former town of Okół, which is older than the newly created Kraków, but has been absorbed into it since the mid-13th century.
Wawel - the limestone hill above the swamps of the Vistula was the nucleus of Kraków, on which the rulers built numerous castles, palaces, churches and cathedrals for more than a thousand years.
Kazimierz – the city newly founded by Casimir the Great in the first half of the 14th century on an island on the Vistula south of Wawel. Also one of the most important centers of Polish Jews since the 15th century. Largely left to decay after the Second World War, Kazimierz has developed into a lively student, bar and hipster district since the 1980s.
West – this includes the formerly independent city of Kleparz (also called Florenc), which was also founded by Casimir the Great, the quarters along the ring road that emerged west of the old town in the 19th century, and the outskirts of Krowodrza, Prądnik Biały, Bronowice and Zwierzyniec. The latter is considered the greenest and at the same time the most exclusive district of Kraków with the Wolski Forest, vineyards, zoo and several residential areas.
East – the districts east of the Old Town such as Stradom and Wesoła, the area around the Main Train Station and the industrial districts of Grzegórzki and Prądnik Czerwony that were added at the beginning of the 20th century.
South - the parts of Kraków south of the Vistula, especially Podgórze, where the Jewish ghetto and Oskar Schindler's factory were located during the German occupation. In addition, there are extensive outskirts, some of which are still rural, such as the spa town of Swoszowice and Tyniec with its Benedictine abbey towering prominently over the Vistula.
Nowa Huta – created in the 1950s as a socialist model town for the workers of the huge ironworks, Nowa Huta has almost had the character of a town within a town to this day. This is so autonomous that some residents only drive to the center of Kraków twice a year. In addition to the neoclassical architecture of the Stalin era, the modern church "Ark of the Lord" is remarkable, which Archbishop Karol Wojtyła (later Pope John Paul II) enforced in the actually atheistically conceived city.


Tourist info

Tourist information offices are located in several places in Kraków:
1 Town Hall Tower on the Market Square, Rynek Główny 1. Tel.: +48 (0)12 433 73 10.
2 Wyspiański Pavilion, plac Wszyskich Swiętych 2. Tel.: +48 (0)12 616 18 86.
3 Airport in Balice. Phone: +48 (0)12 285 53 41.
4 Tourist Information Office, ul. Szpitalna 25. Tel.: +48 (0)12 432 01 10.
5 Tourist Information, ul. św. Jana 2. Phone: +48 (0)12 421 77 87.
6 Tourist Information Office, ul. Józefa 7. Tel.: +48 (0)12 422 04 71.
7 Tourist Information, os. Słoneczne 16. Tel.: +48 (0)12 643 03 03


According to legend, the name goes back to Prince Krak, who lived on Wawel Hill in the 6th century. Two burial mounds from this period, that of Krak and his daughter Wanda, as well as the Dragon Cave below Wawel Castle, are among the oldest evidence of Kraków's early history and are reminiscent of this legendary time.

Kraków was first mentioned in a document in 965 and was the capital and royal city of Poland from 1038 to 1609. After the destruction of old Kraków by the Tartars under Genghis Khan's successors, the city was rebuilt on a large scale in the Gothic style from 1241 around the largest medieval market square in Europe. The town charter was then already awarded again in 1257. About a hundred years later, in 1364, the Jagiellonian University, famous for its mathematical and astronomical faculty, was founded by Casimir the Great, where Nicolaus Copernicus, among others, studied in the 15th century. The golden age of Kraków coincides with the reign of the Jagiellonian dynasty from the 14th to the 16th century, when they ruled from Kraków over what was then the largest state in Europe in terms of area, the Polish-Lithuanian Noble Republic. At times Kraków belonged to the Hanseatic League in the 15th century, where it dominated the copper trade.

Veit Stoss carved the world's largest and most beautiful Gothic altar in Kraków. In addition to him and his son Stanislaus Stoss, numerous artists from southern Germany created in the late Gothic period, including Hans Dürer, Hans Süss, Peter Vischer, Hans Vischer, Hans Beheim the Elder, Georg Pencz and Peter Flötner. At the end of the 15th century, numerous local artists were also active, such as Nicolaus Haberschrack and Stanisław Samostrzelnik, who founded the Kraków school of Gothic painting, and from whom Jan Polack achieved fame and fortune in Munich.

At the beginning of the 16th century, the Jagiellonians married the Milanese Sforzas, and Bona Sforza and her husband Sigismund the Old brought the best Florentine artists to Kraków at the time, including Francesco Fiorentino, Bartolommeo Berrecci and Giovanni Maria Padovano, who in the first half 16th century made Kraków the most beautiful Renaissance city outside of Italy. The Sigismund Chapel is her masterpiece. In the second half of the 16th century, Santi Gucci, Giovanni Maria Bernardoni and Martin Kober worked in Kraków in the late Renaissance, Mannerist and early Baroque styles. If the late Gothic and the Renaissance are considered Kraków's golden age, the high baroque was its silver age. Although the royal court moved to Warsaw at the turn of the century, the nobility and especially the clergy remained as the city's important patrons of the arts. Architects and artists from Ticino worked here in the 17th century, including Giovanni Trevano and Constantino Tencalla, but also Tylman van Gameren and Tommaso Dolabella.

From around 1650 to around 1750, Poland-Lithuania experienced a series of successive wars, from the Chmielnicki Cossack Uprising, the Swedish Deluge, the Polish-Turkish War, the Great Northern War to the War of the Polish Succession. Here, Kraków was often occupied and plundered by enemy troops. Both of these resulted in economic and structural decay and the city fell into a slumber in the 18th century, from which it only came out about a hundred years later after being incorporated by the Habsburgs in 1846, from 1867 in the K-und-K- Monarchy, reawakened. The Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria, to which Kraków now belonged, enjoyed extensive political and cultural autonomy, which encouraged the city's development. In the second half of the 19th century, industrialization began in Kraków, which resulted in very strong population growth and the incorporation of numerous suburbs. Numerous new buildings were built in the style of historicism and the Vienna Secession. The Kraków art scene around the turn of the last century was one of the most interesting in Austria-Hungary. Jan Matejko, Stanisław Wyspiański and Józef Mehoffer worked here.

During the First World War, Russia was unable to conquer Kraków Fortress, so the city suffered no significant war damage. The building fabric of the city also survived the Second World War largely intact, as the Nazi occupiers were unable to carry out the planned destruction due to lack of time and had to flee head over heels. To this day, Kraków is considered the most important cultural center in Poland next to Warsaw. The appointment as "European City of Culture" in 2000 also expressed the international importance of the city. Today Kraków is a European cultural center, famous artists like the composer Krzysztof Penderecki live here. A four kilometer long green belt instead of the former ring wall, the Planty, shields the world-famous old town of Kraków from traffic. Today, Kraków is a city with loose buildings, many green spaces and a clear spatial separation.


Getting in

Kraków is a major transport hub in southern Poland. This is where the old trade routes from west to east (Hohe Strasse) and from north to south (Bernsteinstrasse) cross(ed).

By plane
Kraków John Paul II Airport (IATA: KRK) is located around 11 km east of the city center in Balice. It has been expanded and modernized several times since the 2000s and offers all the expected amenities. The largest airlines here are the Polish LOT and the low-cost airlines Ryanair and Wizz Air.

As of 2022, there are the following connections from German-speaking countries several times a week, sometimes daily:
Austrian Airlines from Vienna
Eurowings from Dusseldorf and Stuttgart
Lufthansa from Frankfurt am Main and Munich
Ryanair from Berlin, Dortmund, Nuremberg and Vienna
SWISS from Zurich

If a direct flight to Kraków is not possible, Katowice Airport (90 km north-west) can be considered as an alternative. There is a bus shuttle service from Katowice Airport to Kraków (Matuszek Transfer and Pyrzowice Express), travel time is 90 minutes, tickets can be bought online and cost €10 for a single journey.

From the airport to the city
The airport is connected to the city center by an S-Bahn and several bus lines.
The SKA1 suburban train departs every 30 minutes during the day (last journey at 12:30 am) from the airport train station directly opposite the terminal (hidden by the multi-storey car park) and runs via Krakow Glowny main train station. Tickets are available from the English-speaking machines on the platform (be sure to buy a return ticket right away, the operator's machines are practically impossible to find at the main train station) or for cash from the train attendant. The S-Bahn takes about 20 minutes to the main station, the trains are modern and air-conditioned, but also relatively full during rush hour.
The bus lines 208, 209 and 300 as well as the night line 302 run between the airport and the city or the surrounding communities. However, these take a relatively long time and are not preferable.
Expensive airport taxis are waiting right in front of the airport exit, costing 100 PLN for the trip to the old town. demand. "Normal" taxis stop a few meters away, which generally use a taximeter - at their stop there are signs with the official tariffs - and depending on the route to the old town (country road or motorway) 70-90 zł. costs. The official airport operator, which can also be booked online through the airport website, is Krakow Taxi.
Ride-hailing services Uber and Bolt are available in Kraków via their respective smartphone apps and also operate to and from the airport. A trip to the old town costs €10-20, depending on demand and vehicle type.
For self-drivers, the airport's motorway entrance is immediately after leaving the airport on the A4. Take this a short distance north (to the "left" coming from the airport terminal) and then at the following interchange turn north-east via the S52 onto the A7, which then heads east directly to Kraków. For the old town, it is advisable to turn off after a few kilometers onto aleja 29 Listopada, which also leads past the main train station. The journey takes about 30 minutes, depending on traffic. For the alternative country road, do not drive onto the motorway at the airport, but follow the 774 from the first roundabout north parallel to the motorway and after a few hundred meters turn east ("right") onto Krakowska, which also leads in the direction of the city centre.

By train
Direct arrival by train is possible from Germany (Hamburg, Berlin) and Austria (via Vienna). There are direct international connections (partly with sleeper cars) with Berlin, Budapest, Bucharest/Varna, Hamburg, Kiev/Odessa, Lemberg, Prague, Vienna and Zlina as well as with all larger Polish cities. All long-distance trains stop at Kraków Główny, the main train station in Kraków. The rail network is operated by the state railway PKP. Train travel in Poland is very cheap, but unfortunately does not always correspond to German quality. However, one should consider it. Especially for longer journeys, it is recommended to use an IC or Ex (express train). These usually run every hour. The journey to Warsaw takes about 3:00h. Katowice can also be reached by train in just over an hour from Kraków, where more trains depart every day for Prague, Bratislava, Vienna and Budapest.

By bus
Numerous bus companies offer travel to Kraków from Germany (Sindbad, Eurolines, Touring, Omnia, Agat, Awizo, Comfort Lines, Interglobus, Rumat) and Switzerland (Agat, Bermuda, Orbis Transport) by bus. Despite growing private transport, an extensive intercity bus network serves the still very important public transport from Kraków. In addition to the state bus lines PKS, there are numerous offers from private providers. Traveling by bus is one of the most affordable ways to explore Poland. Numerous bus companies offer trips to Wieliczka, Zakopane, Auschwitz or Slovakia for tourists at reasonable prices. Especially in winter, one-day (or weekend) ski trips combined with a trip to the warm springs in the High Tatras are popular.

In the street
The road network around Kraków is very well equipped with the A 4 (E40, E462) and expressways. The journey from the German border (Forst or Ludwigsdorf) takes about four hours when traffic is calm.

The A 4 (E40) connects Kraków with Katowice, Gliwice, Opole, Wrocław, Legnica and runs to the border with Germany and east with Tarnów, Rzeszów, Łańcut, Jarosław and Przemyśl in the east and further into Ukraine. The journey to Rzeszów takes about an hour when traffic is calm, and about two hours to Przemyśl. For the section between Kraków and Katowice (approx. 80 km) you have to pay a toll of 24 PLN. be paid (as of Oct 2021). Cash payment in euros is only possible with bills, change is given in złoty. However, this section can be bypassed on the S 94 in the north.

The S 7 (E77) connects Kraków with Kielce, Radom, Warsaw, Olsztyn, Elbląg and Gdańsk in the north. If the traffic is calm, the journey to Warsaw takes about three hours.

The S 7 connects Kraków with Myślenice, Rabka, Nowy Targ and Zakopane in the south and continues into Slovakia. The journey to Nowy Targ takes about an hour when the traffic is calm, and about an hour and a half to Zakopane.

The DK 44 connects Kraków with Zator, Auschwitz and Gliwice in the west, where it meets the A4 again. When the traffic is calm, the drive to Auschwitz takes about an hour and to Gliwice about two hours. The toll section of the A4 can also be bypassed on this route.

The S 52 connects Kraków with Lanckorona, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, Wadowice, Inwałd, Andrychów, Kęty, Bielsko-Biała and Cieszyn in the southwest and continues to the Czech Republic. If traffic is calm, the journey to Bielsko-Biała takes about an hour, to Cieszyn about two hours.

The DK 79 connects Kraków with Sandomierz and Lublin in the northeast. The journey to Sandomierz takes about two hours when the traffic is calm, and about four hours to Lublin.

However, the S 7 (North), the S 44, the DK 52 and the DK 79 are not developed in a motorway-like manner and are not height-free. The S 7 to the south has been expanded to be similar to a motorway only as far as Lubia

By boat
The Vistula in Kraków is a navigable waterway. Excursion boats travel south and north. Several docks also offer kayak, pedalo or sailing boats. There are also several bathing lakes such as Kryspinów, Zakrzówek or Bagry in the city of Kraków or directly adjacent to it. In particular, on the latter, sailing and other sports are possible. A small marina is located on its shore. Zakrzówek, on the other hand, is particularly popular with divers, who can discover numerous relics from the mining period in the clear waters of the former limestone quarry.

Kraków is located on the Vistula Cycle Route and on the European long-distance cycle routes EuroVelo 4 (“Central Europe Route” from Brno, Ostrava and Lviv, Rzeszów) and 11 (“Eastern Europe Route” from Košice, Tarnów and Warsaw, Kielce).


Getting around

On foot and by bike
The old town is largely a pedestrian zone. In some cases, only rescue vehicles and vehicles with a special permit are allowed to drive inside the former city wall ring, today Planty Park. The best way to explore the old town is on foot, by bike or e-scooter. You can rent them in many places.

In the street
Even parts of the city center that can be reached by car are better off using public transport. There is a shortage of parking spaces almost around the clock. If you still want to drive to the city center by car, you should use the large multi-storey car park at the main train station. The first few minutes are free of charge, after that you have to pay moderate parking fees. From this multi-storey car park you can walk to the northern old town in five minutes. Rental cars from Polish and international providers can be rented as well as bicycles and e-scooters, for example directly at the airport or in the city center.

Common taxi providers are iCar, Barbakan, Wawel, Dwójki, Uber and Taxify. Taking a taxi in Kraków is comparatively cheap.

In terms of local public transport, Kraków has a well-developed transport network (prices for public transport in Kraków; network maps for public transport in Kraków, interactive map with all stops).

Buying single-ride tickets can be difficult for visitors. Although all new trams have machines on board, they no longer accept cash. When paying with a foreign credit card, the bank charges can be significantly higher than the fare. Ticket machines are only available at very few large stops, they do not always work reliably and often cause problems, especially with coins.

20 minutes 4 PLN. (approx. EUR 0.85)
60 minutes PLN 6.00. (approx. EUR 1.30)
90 minutes PLN 8.00. (approx. EUR 1.70)
24 hours PLN 17.00. (approx. EUR 3.65)
48 hours PLN 35.00. (approx. EUR 7.50)
72 hours PLN 50.00. (approx. EUR 10.75)
7 days PLN 56.00. (approx. EUR 12.05)
Free travel for people over 70 years of age

bus, tram and train
Kraków does not have a subway, but an express tram that runs to several stops in a long tunnel in some parts of the city center. The linchpin of local public transport is the area around the main train station. There are suburban and intercity buses for regional and suburban traffic. For long-distance traffic there is a modern main train station, which is about 300 m north-east of the old town, and a large bus station right next to it, which has just been rebuilt.

The international airport, which can be reached by bus and train in about 20 minutes from the main train station, offers direct flights to a large number of destinations around the world, especially destinations in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and North America.

By boat
Water trams and excursion boats operate on the Vistula.



Kraków has numerous sights. Its old town has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1978. The city is also very popular with visitors because of its southern flair. The heyday of Kraków was the late Gothic, Renaissance and early Baroque period, that is, the period coinciding with the reign of the Jagiellonians. The epoch of Historicism and Art Nouveau, in which Kraków belonged to the Austro-Hungarian Empire between 1846 and 1918, left numerous monuments behind. The basic structure of Kraków was neither destroyed in the First nor in the Second World War and the monuments are therefore preserved true to the original. These include over a hundred historic churches and monasteries, hundreds of town houses and palaces, seven synagogues and numerous works of art from all eras of the city's history.

The old town has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1978 as a unique architectural ensemble. Its center is the 200 by 200 meter Rynek Główny, one of the largest and most beautiful market squares in Europe. The square is divided by the mighty Cloth Hall, built in the 13th century and rebuilt in 1550 in the Renaissance style. The entire marketplace has a basement. The medieval interconnected cellars, originating from houses that stood before location 1257 on the market square, have been restored and are partially open to tourists. All around, narrow streets with magnificent churches and town houses invite you to stroll.


Castles, palaces and castles

1 Royal Castle on Wawel (Zamek Królewski na Wawelu). Renaissance building from the early 16th century with Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque elements. Rebuilt several times.
2 Łobzów Royal Castle (Pałac Królewski w Łobzowie (Kraków)) . Renaissance building from the 16th century. Rebuilt several times.
3 Erasmus Ciołek Bishop's Palace (Pałac biskupa Erazma Ciołka) . Renaissance building from the early 16th century.
4 Florian Mokrski Bishop's Palace (Pałac biskupa Floriana z Mokrska w Krakowie), 31-002 Kraków, ul. Kanonicza 18 . Renaissance building from the 16th century.
5 Bishop's Palace (Pałac Biskupi), Franciszkańska 3 . Renaissance building from the 16th century.
6 Samuel Maciejowski Bishop's Palace (Pałac Samuela Maciejowskiego w Krakowie) . Renaissance building from the 16th century.
7 Górków Palace Kraków (Pałac Górków w Krakowie), 33-332 Kraków, ul. Kanonicza 24. Mannerist building from the late 16th century.
8 Gniezno Primate's Palace in Kraków (Pałac Arcybiskupów Gnieźnieńskich w Krakowie) . Renaissance building from the 16th century.
9 Wartenberg Castle (Zamek w Przegorzałach). Nazi building from the 20th century



1 Wawel Cathedral (bazylika archikatedralna św. Stanisława i św. Wacława w Krakowie). Originally from the 10th/11th Century, rebuilt several times with stylistic elements, especially Romanesque, brick Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque. Coronation and burial church of Polish kings and Kraków archbishops. Nineteen Gothic, Renaissance, Mannerist, Baroque and Classicist chapels are arranged around the Gothic nave and side naves, in which monarchs rest - including the Czartoryski Chapel, the Gamrat Chapel, the Holy Cross Chapel, Jan Olbracht Chapel, Konarski Chapel, Queen Sophie Chapel, Lipski Chapel, Maciejewski Chapel, Lady Chapel, Potocki Chapel, Rogowski Chapel, Sigismund Chapel, Skotnicki Chapel, the Szafraniec Chapel, the Tomicki Chapel, the Vasa Chapel, the Zadzik Chapel, the Załuski Chapel, the Zebrzydowski Chapel and the Leonhard Crypt.
2 Marian Basilica (kościół archiprezbiterialny pw. Wniebowzięcia Najświętszej Marii Panny), pl. Mariacki 5 (east side of the Great Market). Brick Gothic church from the 13th century, rebuilt several times with Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Classicism and Art Nouveau style elements. There are numerous works of art here, such as the Marienaltar by Veit Stoss. Every hour on the hour, a fire brigade musician blows the Hejnał trumpet signal from the tower room at a height of 54 meters. This apparently breaks off in the middle of the melody. According to legend, this commemorates the Mongol invasion of 1241, when the watchman was shot with an arrow while blowing the warning signal. This story is probably a 20th century invention.
3 Jesuit Church (Kościół Świętych Apostołów Piotra i Pawła, Peter and Paul Church), ul. Grodzka 52a, Grodzka 52A, 31-044 Kraków . Early Baroque church from the 16th century, modeled on the Church of Il Gesù in Rome, is considered to be the first Baroque church in Poland-Lithuania.
4 Franciscan Basilica (Bazylika św. Franciszka z Asyżu w Krakowie), pl. Wszystkich Świętych 5 (ul. Franciszkańska). Church from the 13th century with Gothic, Neo-Gothic and Art Nouveau elements.
5 Pauline Basilica (Kościół św. Michała Archanioła i św. Stanisława Biskupa w Krakowie, St. Michael and Stanislaus or Skałka), ul. Skałeczna 15. Church from the 13th century with Gothic and Baroque elements. A kind of pantheon of deserving Poles has been in the crypt since the 1880s. For example, the late medieval diplomat and chronicler Jan Długosz, the writer Józef Ignacy Kraszewski, the artists Stanisław Wyspiański and Karol Szymanowski, and the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, Czesław Miłosz.
6 St. Andrew's Church (Kościół św. Andrzeja w Krakowie), ul. Grodzka 54. Church from the 11th century, originally Romanesque, rebuilt several times with Baroque elements.
7 Corpus Christi Basilica (Bazylika Bożego Ciała w Krakowie), ul. Bożego Ciała 26. Church from the 14th century with elements of brick Gothic and high Baroque style.
8 Adalbert Church (Kościół św. Wojciecha), Rynek Główny 2 . Originally Romanesque from the 10th century, rebuilt several times with Baroque style elements.
9 Anna Church (Kościół św. Anny w Krakowie), ul. św. Anny 13. Originally a Gothic church from the 14th century, rebuilt several times with Baroque and Rococo style elements.
10 Augustinian Church (Kościół św. Katarzyny Aleksandryjskiej i św. Małgorzaty w Krakowie, St. Catherine of Alexandria and Margaret), ul. Augustiańska 9 . Church from the 14th century, rebuilt several times with brick Gothic and Baroque style elements.
11 Dominican Basilica (Bazylika Świętej Trójcy w Krakowie, Holy Trinity Church), ul. Stolarska 12 . Brick Gothic church from the 13th century with Baroque, Neo-Gothic and Art Nouveau style elements.
12 St. Joseph's Church in Podgórze (Kościół św. Józefa w Krakowie (Podgórze)), ul. Zamoyskiego 2, 30-523 Kraków, ul. Jana Zamoyskiego 2 . Neo-Gothic church from the 19th century with Art Nouveau style elements.
13 Mogila Cistercian Monastery (Opactwo Cystersów w Mogile), ul. Klasztorna 11, Klasztorna 11 (Mogiła district) . Gothic-Baroque church from the 13th century with Gothic, Renaissance and late Baroque style elements.
The Ägidius Church - Romanesque-Gothic church from the 11th century, rebuilt several times with Romanesque and Baroque style elements.
The Agnes Church - Goric-Baroque church from the 15th century, rebuilt several times with Gothic and Baroque style elements.
The Resurrection Chapel - neoclassical cemetery church from the 19th century.
The Barbara Church - Gothic-Baroque church from the 13th century, rebuilt several times with stylistic elements of brick Gothic and Baroque.
Church of Mercy - Renaissance-Baroque church from the 16th century with Renaissance and early Baroque style elements.
The Bartholomäus Church - baroque church from the 17th century with stylistic elements of the high and late baroque.
The Benedict Church - Romanesque church from the 11th century with Romanesque and Gothic style elements.
The Bednedictine Church - Romanesque-Baroque church from the 11th century with Romanesque and Baroque style elements.
The Bernhardiner Church - Gothic-Baroque church from the 15th century, rebuilt several times with stylistic elements of the late Baroque and Rococo.
Bronisława Chapel - neo-Gothic church from the 19th century.
Church of the Nativity of Christ - Gothic-Baroque wooden church from the 14th century with Gothic and Baroque style elements.
The Dominican Church - Baroque church from the 17th century.
Trinity Church - Baroque church from the 17th century with late Baroque and Rococo style elements.
St. Florian's Basilica - Romanesque-Baroque church from the 11th century with high-Baroque style elements.
Church of the Holy Cross - Gothic-Baroque church from the 12th century with Romanesque, Brick Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles.
Sacred Heart Basilica - neo-Gothic church from the 20th century with brick Gothic and Art Nouveau style elements.
The Kleparz Herz-Jesu-Kirche - Art Nouveau church from the 19th century with stylistic elements of the neo-Romanesque and classicism.
The Neuwelter Herz-Jesu-Kirche - neo-Gothic church from the 19th century with neo-Gothic and Art Nouveau style elements.
The Church of the Heart of Mary - neo-Gothic church from the 19th century with elements of neo-Gothic and Art Nouveau styles.
The Old Town Church of St. John - Romanesque-Baroque church from the 11th century with stylistic elements of the High and Late Baroque.
The Josef Schutz Church - neo-Gothic church from the 19th century with Art Nouveau style elements.
The Josefskapelle - Neo-Gothic church from the 19th century with Art Nouveau style elements.
The Old Town Joseph's Church - baroque church from the 17th century.
The Camaldolese Church - early baroque church from the 17th century.
The Capuchin Church - High Baroque church from the 17th century.
The Carmelite Basilica - Gothic-Baroque church from the 14th century with Romanesque, Gothic and High Baroque style elements.
The Old Town Casimir Church - baroque church from the 17th century.
Church of the Exaltation of the Cross - Baroque church from the 17th century.
The Lazarist Church - baroque church from the 17th century with stylistic elements of the late baroque and rococo.
The Loreto Church - baroque church from the 17th century.
Lourdes Church - Neo-Gothic church from the 19th century.
The Margaret and Judith Church - baroque wooden church from the 17th century.
The Warsaw Suburbs Church of the Conception of the Virgin Mary - neo-Gothic church from the 20th century.
Church of the Conception of the Virgin Mary in Wesoła - Baroque church from the 17th century.
St. Mark's Church - Gothic-Baroque church from the 13th century with brick Gothic and Baroque style elements.
Martins Church - baroque church from the 17th century.
St. Nicholas Church - Romanesque-Baroque church from the 11th century with Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque style elements.
The Norbertanerinnenkirche - Romanesque-Baroque church from the 12th century with Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque style elements.
The Old Town Piarist Church - Rococo church from the 18th century with late Baroque and Rococo style elements.
The Salvator Church - Romanesque-Baroque church from the 10th century with Romanesque, Renaissance and Baroque style elements.
The Theresien Church  - baroque church from the 18th century with stylistic elements of the late baroque and the rococo.
The Thomas Church  - baroque church from the 17th century.
St. Vincent's Church - neo-Gothic church from the 19th century.
The Visitant Church - a baroque church from the 17th century with late baroque and rococo style elements.



Most of the synagogues are located in the Kazimierz district, also known as the Jewish Quarter.

14 Old Synagogue (Synagoga Stara w Krakowie), ul. Szeroka 24, 31-053 Kraków, ul. Szeroka 24 . Synagogue in brick Gothic and Renaissance style. Founded in the 15th century, it is the oldest surviving synagogue in Kraków and was the nucleus of the Jewish community in Kazimierz. The core of today's building dates from 1550 and was designed by the Italian architect Mateo Gucci. The vestibule with the two women's prayer rooms was added in the first half of the 17th century.
15 Temple Synagogue (Synagoga Tempel w Krakowie), ul. Miodowa 24 . Reformed synagogue built in Moorish style in 1860-62.
16 Kupa Synagogue (Synagoga Kupa w Krakowie), ul. Miodowa 27 . Baroque synagogue built in 1643 from donations to the treasury of the Jewish community (Kahal). The name derives from kupat, the Hebrew word for treasury.
17 Remu Synagogue (Synagoga Remu w Krakowie), ul. Szeroka 40 . 16th-century Renaissance synagogue. It is named after Rabbi Moses Isserles, also known as Rema or Remu after his Hebrew initials.
18 High Synagogue (Synagoga Wysoka w Krakowie), ul. Józefa 38, Józefa 38 . 16th-century Renaissance synagogue.
The Deiches Synagogue - neo-baroque synagogue from the 20th century.
The Isaac Synagogue - Baroque synagogue from the 17th century.
The Popper Synagogue - Baroque synagogue from the 17th century.
The Sugar Synagogue - Neo-Gothic synagogue from the 19th century.
The Great Mikveh - Renaissance mikveh (Jewish ritual bath) from the 16th century.



10 Cloth Hall (Sukiennice w Krakowie), Rynek Główny 3 (in the middle of the Main Market Square) . Originally a Gothic building from the 14th century, it was rebuilt in the Renaissance style in the mid-16th century. Largest Renaissance building of its kind in Europe. As the name suggests, the halls were used for trading in textiles. The Cloth Hall underwent another reconstruction in the years 1875-1878, during which the neo-Gothic arcades were created along the long sides. The column capitals were designed by Jan Matejko. The exhibition rooms of the Kraków National Museum with paintings from the 19th century (including works by Matejko) are located on the upper floor. Souvenirs are now sold in the passage in the basement.
11 Florian's Gate with the rest of the city walls (Brama Floriańska w Krakowie) . The 14th-century Gothic city gate is located on the north side of the old town. The Fur Makers' Guild was once responsible for its defense. The gate is part of Kraków's Royal Route: the Polish kings entered the city here on their coronation procession from St. Florian's Church to Wawel. The baroque bronze spire was added in 1660. The building thus reaches a height of 34.5 meters. The south side of the tower is decorated with an 18th-century bas-relief of Saint Florian. When the medieval city fortifications were removed in the 19th century, the section with the Florian's Gate was spared in order to protect the old town from strong north winds.
12 Barbican . The late-medieval brick rondel built in 1498/99 in front of the Florianstor is the largest preserved barbican in Europe. It was intended to protect the then Polish capitals against attacks, especially from the Ottoman Empire and the Tatars. Since the city had natural protection from the Vistula River to the south, and marshes to the west and east, the northern side was the most vulnerable and was specially fortified.
13 Słowacki Theater (Teatr Miejski), pl. Świętego Ducha 1, plac św. Ducha w Krakowie 1. Magnificent theater building built in 1891-93 in eclectic style. The Opéra Garnier in Paris served as an architectural model. As a local feature, however, grimacing faces were added to the roof, reminiscent of those on the cloth hall on the main market. At the time of the partitions of Poland, Polish culture enjoyed somewhat greater freedom in the Austrian-ruled part than in the Prussian and Russian parts. The City Theater of the former capital of Kraków played a special role in the preservation of national culture. Works by the young Polish playwright Stanisław Wyspiański were premiered here, including Wesele (“The Wedding”) in 1901, with which he called on his people to revolt against foreign rule. Since 1909 the theater has borne the name of Juliusz Słowackis, one of Poland's national poets.
14 Old Theater (Stary Teatr im. Heleny Modrzejewskiej w Krakowie), ul. Jagiellońska 5 or plac Szczepański 1. The building of the Old National Theater was erected in 1841–1843. From 1865 the chess player Helena Modrzejewska, whose name the theater bears, played here. During a renovation in the years 1903-1906 it received its Art Nouveau ornamentation.
15 Collegium Maius, ul. Jagiellońska 15, ulica Jagiellońska w Krakowie15, ul. św. Anna 8-10. The brick Gothic building dates from around 1400 and is the oldest surviving building of Kraków University, founded in 1364. Originally, the classrooms were on the ground floor, while the library and living quarters of the professors were on the upper floor. It was here that Nicolaus Copernicus studied mathematics and astronomy in the 1490s. Gradually, the university moved into other buildings. Today the Collegium Maius serves as the university museum.
16 Town Hall Tower (Wieża ratuszowa w Krakowie), Rynek Główny. Gothic tower of the town hall from the 13th century. It is made partly of brick and partly of stone blocks and is 70 meters high. In the 17th century it got a baroque spire. Since a storm in 1703, the tower has tilted slightly. When the dilapidated Gothic town hall was demolished in 1820, only the tower remained. Today it houses the city history museum, and the viewing platform can also be climbed. The Ludow Theater is located in the basement.
17 August Witkowski Lyceum (V Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. Augusta Witkowskiego), ul. Studencka 12, Studencka 12. The magnificent Neo-Renaissance school building was built in 1893–95 for the Oberrealschule founded under Emperor Franz Joseph. Since 1921 it has borne the name of the physicist August Witkowski. Numerous prominent Krakóws went to school here, e.g. B. Foreign Minister Józef Beck, director Małgorzata Szumowska and actress Alicja Bachleda-Curuś.
18 Kossakówka, pl. Juliusza Kossaka 4 (Nowy Świat district, a little off aleja Zygmunta Krasińskiego). Former noble residence of the Kossaków family, built in 1851 in neo-Gothic style. In the period before the Second World War, this was a meeting place for Kraków's intellectuals and artists.
The Academy of Fine Arts - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Royal Arsenal - Renaissance building from the early 16th century, expanded in the Baroque style in the early 17th century.
The Municipal Arsenal - Renaissance building from the 16th century, part of the preserved city wall at Florian's Gate.
The Collegium Broscianum - Renaissance building of the Kraków University from the 16th century was commissioned by the Jesuits.
Collegium Iuridicum - Gothic-Renaissance building of Kraków University from 14th century. Next to the Collegium Maius, the oldest surviving building of Kraków University.
Collegium Kołłątaj - Classicist building of Kraków University from the 18th century.
Collegium Minus - Gothic-Renaissance building of Kraków University from 15th century. Expanded in the 19th century.
Collegium Novum - neo-Gothic building of Kraków University from the 19th century. The Kraków special action was carried out here during the Nazi era.
Collegium Nowodworski - Renaissance building of Kraków University from the 16th century. Among others, King John III studied here. Sobieski.
Collegium Śniadecki - Renaissance building of Kraków University from the 16th century, later enlarged in Baroque style.
Collegium Witkowski - neo-Gothic building of Kraków University from the 19th century.
Collegium Wróblewski - late baroque building of Kraków University from the 18th century.
The Music Academy - Neoclassical building from the 20th century.
The Philharmonie - neo-baroque building from the 20th century.
The National Bank of Poland - neoclassical building from the 20th century.
The Polish Savings Bank - neoclassical building from the 20th century.
The City Hall of Kazimierz - Gothic-Renaissance building from the 14th century, stands on the market square of the formerly independent city of Kazmierz.
The New Town Hall of Podgórze - historicism building from the 19th century, stands on the market square of the formerly independent town of Podgórze.
The Business Academy - neo-baroque building from the 19th century.
Provincial Office - eclectic building from the 19th century.



The Badeni Palace Kraków - Historicism building from the 19th century.
The Villa Baszta - historicist building from the 20th century.
Białoprądnicki Palace - classicism building from the 18th century.
The Celestat Palace - Neo-Gothic building from the 19th century.
The Czapski Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Czarkowski Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Czartoryski Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Villa Decius - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Dembinski Palace - Rococo building from the 18th century.
The Dunaevsky Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Fischer-Benis Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Hotel Grand Palais - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Hebdowski Palace - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Jerzmanowski Palace - historicist building from the 18th century.
Jutkiewicz Palace - eclectic building from the 19th century.
The Kirchmayer Palais - eclectic building from the 19th century.
The Kmita Palace - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
Krzysztofory Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Art Palace Kraków - Art Nouveau building from the 19th century.
The Larisch Palais - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Lasocki Palace - Historicism building from the 19th century.
The Lewalska Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Lubomirski Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
Małachowski Palace - Baroque building from the 19th century.
Mańkowski Palace - Neo-Baroque building from the 19th century.
The Montelupi Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
Ogiński Potulicki Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Ostaszewski Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Popiel Palace - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Potocki Palace - classicism building from the 18th century.
The Press Palace - Neo-Baroque building from the 20th century.
The Przebendowski Palace - baroque building from the 18th century.
The Puget Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
Raczynski Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Radzikowski Palace - historicist building from the 20th century.
Rydlówka - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Rzewuski Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Sanguszko Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Sierakowski Palace - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Stadnicki Palace - Rococo building from the 18th century.
Stryjeński Palace - Neo-Renaissance building from the 19th century.
The Tarnowski Palace - baroque building from the 17th century.
Tyszkiewicz Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Wielopolski Palace - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Włodkowicz Palace - Neo-Baroque building from the 19th century.
The Wodzicki Palace - late baroque building from the 18th century.
The Wodzicki Palace - baroque building from the 17th century.
Wojewodziński Palace - Renaissance building from the 16th century.
The Zbaraski Palace Kraków - Rococo building from the 18th century.
The Zieliewski Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.
The Zipser Palais - classicism building from the 18th century.
The Zofiówka Palace - historicist building from the 19th century.



After Kraków was annexed by the Habsburg monarchy, the Austrians under Emperor Franz Joseph I had numerous forts and bastions built around Kraków to defend the city against an expected Russian attack. Almost a hundred bastions and forts were built in eight rings. When the Russian attack came during the First World War, Kraków Fortress was able to fend it off. The older forts were abandoned after World War II, but some have been preserved as monuments. Other parts of the fortress were used for military purposes until the 1990s. Today, a tourist walking and cycling route (Szlak Twierdzy Kraków) connects some of the bastions and forts.

The remains of these fortifications include:
the bastions at Wawel
Bastion Kleparz north of downtown
Warsaw Lunette near Rakowicki Cemetery
Bastion Lubicz at Rondo Mogilski in Grzegórzki
Fort St. Benedict (artillery tower) on Lasota Hill in Podgórze
Fort Kościuszko on Kościuszko Hill.


Modern architecture

Unity Tower (Szkiele Gate) . A high-rise building east of the old town that was unfinished for almost 40 years. Construction began in 1975, but was canceled in 1979 due to financial problems and was left as an investment ruin. Since then there have been repeated plans as to how the building could be completed and used, but they have never been realised. Since March 2016, however, construction has continued, and in 2020 the Unity Tower was completed as an office and apartment building
The K1 - a skyscraper east of the old town built in the 1970s.
The Salwator Tower - a skyscraper west of Old Town built in the 2000s.
The Congress Center - a modern building from the 2010s.
The Expo Kraków - a modern building from the 2010s.
The Tauron Arena - a modern building from the 2010s.
The Manggha - a Japanese exhibition pavilion from the 1990s.



Adam Mickiewicz Monument (Pomnik Adama Mickiewicza w Krakowie), Rynek Główny. It commemorates the Polish national poet Adam Mickiewicz (1798–1855). The statue was created by Teodor Rygier and inaugurated in 1898 on the occasion of the poet's 100th birthday. It was destroyed during the occupation of Poland by German troops in 1940, but was rebuilt in 1955 after the end of the war. If Krakóws want to meet in the city center, they often meet at Adaś (“Adamchen”).
Grunwald Monument (Pomnik Grunwaldzki). Equestrian statue of the Polish-Lithuanian King Władysław II Jagiełło, who defeated the troops of the Teutonic Order in 1410 in the Battle of Grunwald or Tannenberg. The memorial was erected in 1910 to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the battle and was designed by Antoni Wiwulski
Monument to the Dog Dżok (Pomnik psa Dżoka), bulwar Czerwieński (on the bank of the Vistula between Wawel and Grunwald Bridge). Monument designed by Bronisław Chromy and inaugurated in 2001. Faithful dog Dżok was seen in 1990-91 at the Grunwaldzkie roundabout, where he waited in vain for his deceased master.
Wawel Dragon (Smok Wawelski) . The 6 meter high bronze statue was created by Bronisław Chromy in 1969 and placed in front of the Dragon's Cave at the foot of Wawel in 1972. It is reminiscent of the legend of the Wawel dragon, which is said to have haunted the Kraków area at the time of the mythical founder of the city, Krak. The duke promised the hand of his daughter Wanda to whoever would kill the dragon. Many knights failed in the attempt. Finally, a shoemaker who stuffed a lambskin with sulfur succeeded. The dragon ate the supposed lamb and got extremely thirsty from the sulfur. He drank so much water from the Vistula that he burst. The dragon statue "spits fire": A gas flame in its mouth is ignited at intervals of approx. 5 minutes.
The Fryderyk Chopin Monument - by Władysław Marcinkowski.
The Nicolaus Copernicus Monument - by Cyprian Godebski.
The Józef Dietl Monument - by Xawery Dunikowski.
The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier - by Marian Dąbrowski.
The Tadeusz Kościuszko Monument - by Leonard Marconi and Antoni Popiel.
The Jan Matejko Monument - by Jan Tutaj.
The Memorial to the Victims of Fascism - by Witold Cęckiewicz.
The memorial for the victims of communism - by Stefan Dousa.
The Ignacy Paderewski Monument - by Czesław Dźwigaj.
The Józef Piłsudski Monument - by Czesław Dźwigaj.
The Tadeusz Rejtan Monument - by Czesław Dźwigaj.
The Władysław Sikorski Monument - by Bogusz Salwiński.
The Piotr Skarga Monument - by Czesław Dźwigaj.
The Piotr Skrzynecki Monument - by Grażyna Borkowska-Niemojewska and Łukasz Niemojewski.
The Solidarność Monument
The Walenty Badylak Fountain
Monument to Stanisław Wyspiański - by Marian Konieczny.


Honor mound

Kraków has a long tradition of raising mounds of honor to commemorate deceased eminent personalities. Five of the original eight mounds of honor are still preserved.

1 Krak Hill (Kopiec Krakusa). Krak Hill was built around 500 BC. Heaped up as a burial mound for an unknown person of the Przeworsk culture on the Lasota limestone cliffs south of the Vistula. He later became associated with the legendary founder of Kraków, Krak. From the summit there is a wide panorama of the city.
2 Wanda Hill (Kopiec Wandy). Wanda Hill was built around 500 BC. heaped up as a burial mound for an unknown person from the Przeworsk culture in what is now the Nowa Huta district. He was later linked to the daughter of Wanda, the legendary founder of Kraków, Krak.
3 Kościuszko Mound (Kopiec Kościuszki w Krakowie) wikipediacomons. Kościuszko Hill was raised in the city forest in 1820-1823 in honor of the Polish national hero Tadeusz Kościuszko. From the summit there is a wide panorama of the city and the Beskids to the Tatras.
4 Piłsudski Hill (Kopiec Piłsudskiego w Krakowie) . Piłsudski Hill was raised in the city forest in 1934–1937 in honor of the Polish Marshal Józef Piłsudski. From the summit there is a wide panorama of the city and the Beskids to the Tatras.
5 John Paul II Hill (Kopiec Jana Pawła II w Krakowie) . John Paul II Hill was raised in 1997 in honor of Pope John Paul II south of the Vistula in the Dębniki district.



Listed are just some of the most famous of more than a hundred museums in Kraków.

Wawel Museums
Audience Chambers of the Wawel Castle (Reprezentacyjne Komnaty Królewskie na Wawelu) . The throne rooms of Polish kings with Renaissance furniture and works of art.
Private Royal Apartments of Wawel Castle (Prywatne Apartamenty Królewskie na Wawelu) . The living quarters of Polish kings with Renaissance furniture and works of art.
Crown Treasury of the Wawel Castle (Prywatne Apartamenty Królewskie na Wawelu) . Art of the Polish royal crown.
Wawel Castle Armory (Zbrojownia na Wawelu) . Collection of weapons of the Polish kings.
Art of the East at the Wawel Castle (Sztuka Wschodu na Wawelu) . Art collection of objects that King John III. Sobieski captured by the Ottomans during the relief of Vienna in 1683.
Sunken Wawel (Wawel Zaginiony) . Exhibition on the no longer preserved buildings on Wawel.
Dragon Cave (Smocza Jama) . Karst show cave under the Wawel Castle.
Cathedral Museum (Muzeum Katedralne im. Jana Pawła II na Wawelu) . The museum exhibits the treasury of the cathedral, including the crown jewels.
Tombs of the Kings and Sigismund's Bell (Groby Królewskie na Wawelu). Royal tombs in the crypts of Wawel Cathedral and the Sigismund Bell in the bell tower.
Royal Castle Gardens (Ogrody Królewskie na Wawelu) . Reconstructed Renaissance gardens of Queen Bona Sforza from the first half of the 16th century.
The Wawel Museum also includes the Pieskowa Skała Castle and the Stryszów Manor, located outside the city limits of Kraków.


National Museum

Main Building (Gmach Główny Muzeum Narodowego w Krakowie), Edificio principale (Gmach Główny): Al. 3 Maya 1, 30-062. Divided into several collections with over a million works of art.
Czartoryski Museum (Muzeum Książąt Czartoryskich w Krakowie), Museo Czartoryski ul. Św. Jan 19:31-017. Phone: +48 12 370 54 66 . The oldest public museum in Poland dates back to the 18th century with works by Leonardo da Vinci, Rembrandt, Raffalo and many other well-known artists. The most famous exhibit is da Vinci's Polish Mona Lisa. The museum is located in the northern old town.
Czartoryski Library (Biblioteka Książąt Czartoryskich) . The library museum houses over 70,000 old prints and 3,000 manuscripts from the Middle Ages to modern times.
Europeum (Ośrodek Kultury Europejskiej "Europeum") . European art in the Gothic Old Warehouse with works of art from the late Gothic to the Baroque and Classical periods, including works by Paolo Veneziano, Pieter Brueghel the Younger, Lucas Cranach the Younger, Lorenzo Lotto, Nicolaes Maes, Cornelis de Vos and Bertel Thorvaldsen.
Cloth Hall Gallery (Sukiennice w Krakowie), Rynek Główny. Polish painting and sculpture from the 19th century. The museum is located on Kraków's Main Market Square.
Erasmus Ciołek Bishop's Palace (Pałac biskupa Erazma Ciołka) . medieval, especially Gothic art from Kraków.
Jan Matejko House (Dom Jana Matejki w Krakowie), ul. Floriańska 41, 31-019 Kraków. The museum on the Royal Route of the Old Town is dedicated to the painter Jan Matejko.
Wyspiański Museum (Muzeum Stanisława Wyspiańskiego w Krakowie), ul. Szczepańska 11, 31-011 Kraków. The museum in the Old Town is dedicated to the painter Stanisław Wyspiański.
Józef Mehoffer House (Dom Józefa Mehoffera), Casa Mehoffer ulicy Krupniczej 26 . The museum in the old town is dedicated to the painter Józef Mehoffer.
Emmerich Hutten-Czapski Museum (Muzeum im. Emeryka Hutten-Czapskiego), ul. J. Piłsudskiego 10-12, 31-109 Kraków . The museum is dedicated to a coin collection.
The National Museum also includes Villa Atma in Zakopane, which is outside the city limits of Kraków.


City ​​Museum

Main Building (Krzysztofory) . The museum on the Main Market Square in the Krzysztofory Palace is dedicated to the history of Kraków.
Theater Museum (Dom pod Krzyżem w Krakowie), pl. sw. Ducha 5 . The Museum in the House under the Cross in the Old Town is dedicated to the history of theater in Kraków.
Old Synagogue (Synagoga Stara w Krakowie), 31-053 Kraków, ul. Szeroka 24. The museum in the Old Synagogue is dedicated to the Jewish community of Kraków from the Middle Ages to the present day.
Eagle Pharmacy Museum (Apteka Pod Orłem w Krakowie), plac Bohaterów Getta 18, 30-547 Kraków. The museum in the Adlerapotheke in the former Jewish ghetto is dedicated to the Jewish ghetto.
Pomeranian Street Museum (Ulica Pomorska (oddział Muzeum Historycznego Miasta Krakowa)) . The Museum in the Gestapo Torture Cellar is dedicated to the history of Kraków from 1939 to 1956 during the Nazi occupation and Stalinism.
Celestat wikipediacommons. The museum is dedicated to the medieval Kraków Riflemen's Association.
Hipolitów House (Kamienica Hipolitów w Krakowie) . The museum is a reconstruction of a typical dwelling house of the Kraków bourgeoisie from the 17th and 18th centuries.
Zwierzyniec House (Dom Zwierzyniecki), ul. Królowej Jadwigi 41, 30-209 Kraków. The museum is a reconstruction of a typical 19th-century residential building on the outskirts of Kraków.
Town Hall Tower (Wieża ratuszowa w Krakowie), Rynek Główny w Krakowie 1 . The museum is the reconstruction of the city's medieval town hall. From the top floor you have a beautiful view of the old town.
barbican . The museum is the reconstruction of the city's medieval fortifications.
City Walls (Trasa turystyczna Mury Obronne) . The museum is a tour of the preserved part of the city wall.
Nowa Huta Museum (Dzieje Nowej Huty) . The museum is a reconstruction of a typical workers' apartment from the communist era in Kraków.
Oskar Schindler's Emalia Factory (Fabryka Emalia Oskara Schindlera) . The museum is the reconstruction of the Emalienfakrik, where Oskar Schindler employed forced laborers from the Jewish ghetto and was able to save some of them from deportation to Auschwitz.
Cellars under the Main Market Square (Podziemia Rynku w Krakowie) . The museum is the reconstruction of the cellars and vaults under the Main Market Square.
Podgórze Museum. The museum is dedicated to the history of the city of Podgórze.
concentration camp Plaszow. The museum is deals with the history of the Nazi concentration camp Plaszow in Podgórze.
Home Army Museum (Muzeum Armii Krajowej w Krakowie) . The museum is dedicated to the history of the Home Army during World War II.
Museum of the People's Republic (Muzeum PRL-u w Nowej Hucie), osiedle Centrum E1 wikipedia. The museum is dedicated to the history of the People's Republic of Poland. It is located in Nowa Huta.
Aviation Museum (Muzeum Lotnictwa Polskiego) (Muzeum Lotnictwa Polskiego w Krakowie), al. Jana Pawła II 39. Tel.: +48 12 6428700 . The very interesting museum offers a large collection of aircraft and aircraft technology. There is also an exhibition about the Cold War. Also interesting is a collection of old German airplanes from the beginning of the 20th century. The museum is located in the Czyżyny district east of the city center. Train line 12 ends near the museum, then it's a 10-minute walk. Open: Tue-Sun 09:00-19:00. Price: Admission: PLN. 10/5 (adults/children, students); Free admission on Tuesdays.
Manggha House (Muzeum Sztuki i Techniki Japońskiej “Manggha”), Konopnickiej 26, 30-302 Kraków . The museum houses Japanese collections. It lies on the opposite side of the Vistula from Wawel.
Museum of Contemporary Art (Muzeum Sztuki Współczesnej w Krakowie), ul. Lipowa 4, 30-702 Kraków. The museum is dedicated to modern Polish and foreign art.
Museum of Stained Glass Windows (Muzeum Witrażu w Krakowie), al. Krasińskiego 23, 31-111 Kraków. Email: . The museum exhibits stained glass windows from the Middle Ages to the modern day, with an emphasis on Art Nouveau.
Palace of Arts (Pałac Sztuki w Krakowie) . The Art Nouveau museum shows changing exhibitions of modern art.
Art Bunker (Galeria Sztuki Współczesnej "Bunkier Sztuki"). Modern art in the western part of the old town with changing exhibitions.
Archdiocesan Museum (Muzeum Archidiecezjalne w Krakowie) . The museum exhibits sacred art.
University Museum (Muzeum Uniwersytetu Jagiellońskiego Collegium Maius), ul. Jagiellonska 15, 31-010 Kraków. Museum of the Jagiellonian University with numerous medieval exhibits, including one of the first globes with America and the instruments of Nicolaus Copernicus.
Pharmaceutical Museum (Muzeum Farmacji Collegium Medicum Uniwersytetu Jagiellońskiego). Located on the Royal Route in the old town, it is one of the oldest medical museums in the world.
Archaeological Museum (Muzeum Archeologiczne w Krakowie). With the permanent exhibitions: 1000 years of Kraków and Egypt. The museum is located in the southern old town at Planty Park. Its Renaissance gardens offer an imposing view of the Wawel.
Geological Museum (Muzeum Geologiczne Instytutu Nauk Geologicznych PAN w Krakowie). Geological Museum of the Polish Academy of Sciences.
Museum of Natural History (Muzeum Przyrodnicze Instytutu Systematyki i Ewolucji Zwierząt PAN), Świętego Sebastiana 9, 31-049 Kraków . Natural History Museum of the Polish Academy of Sciences.
Paleobotanical Museum (Muzeum Paleobotaniczne Instytutu Botaniki PAN w Krakowie) . Paleobotanical Museum of the Polish Academy of Sciences.
Ethnographic Museum (Muzeum Etnograficzne in Seweryna Udzieli in Krakowie) . The museum in the Old Town Hall of Kazimierz shows the folk art of different peoples.
Jewish Museum of Galicia (Żydowskie Muzeum Galicja w Krakowie) . The museum shows Kraków's Jewish past and present from a contemporary perspective.


Streets and squares

Main Market (Rynek Główny) . Medieval market square, laid out in its present form in 1257. It is square in shape, each side measuring 200 meters, making it one of the largest medieval squares in Europe. In its center stands the Renaissance-style Cloth Hall. The Romanesque Adalbert church, the town hall tower and the Adam Mickiewicz monument are also located on the square. It is surrounded by the Marienkirche as well as representative palaces and town houses. There are numerous dining establishments that set up their outdoor seating on the square when the weather is nice.
Ring road (I obwodnica). A ring road leads around the Planty park, which was laid out in the 19th century to replace the medieval town fortifications. It is lined with numerous representative buildings from the Imperial and Royal period, which is reminiscent of the Vienna Ringstrasse. The ring has a total length of 3.7 kilometers and is used by trams.
Aleje Trzech Wieszczów (Avenue of the Three Poets; II obwodnica). Umbrella term for aleja Juliusza Słowackiego, aleja Adama Mickiewicza and aleja Zygmunta Krasińskiego, which merge into each other and are named after important Polish poets. They form the western and north-western parts of the second ring road surrounding the city center (district 1) and were built in the 1930s to replace an earlier ring railway line. The avenues are lined with residential buildings in the style of classic modernism and neoclassicism, but also representative buildings such as the National Museum, the Agricultural University and the Academy for Mining and Metallurgy.
Ghetto Heroes' Square (Plac Bohaterów Getta) . The former Small Market (Mały Rynek) of the once independent town of Podgórze. During the Second World War, the National Socialists set up the Jewish ghetto here. The square has been designed as a memorial since 2005: 70 empty chairs are spread across the square, commemorating the victims and heroes of the ghetto. On the square (no. 18) is the pharmacy under the eagle, whose non-Jewish owner helped the inmates of the ghetto. There is a museum there today.
Plac Nowy (New Square). Square in the center of the Jewish part of Kazimierz. It was built in the early 19th century in place of the earlier Libuszhof (hence it is "new" compared to the very old structures in Kazimierz). In the middle of the square is a round low-rise building (Okrąglak), also called rondel (“cooking pot”) by the locals. This was once a Jewish slaughterhouse for poultry. Later it was converted into a market hall, today it houses snack bars that are open late into the night.
The Vistula Boulevards – walking and cycling paths along the Vistula.


Parks and gardens

Planty . The old town center is surrounded by a three-kilometre-long green promenade ring that begins and ends at Wawel. It was created at the beginning of the 19th century after the medieval city wall had been removed and the moat filled up.
Błonia . A large green space west of the Old Town that King Kazimierz the Great gave to Kraków's citizens around the mid-14th century to raise livestock. Since then, the area could not be built on and this has remained so to this day.
Jordan Park (Park im. Henryka Jordana w Krakowie), between aleja 3 Maja and ul. Reymonta. The park to the west of the old town connects to the Błonia to the north. It was created in 1889 on the initiative of Henryk Jordan on the site of a former state horticultural show. There is a pond with pedal boats, tourist cafes and numerous busts commemorating important Polish personalities.
Medieval gardens are still preserved in the monasteries of the Cistercians, St. Bernard and Pauline monks, baroque ones in the monasteries of the missionaries and the Capuchins.
The Wawel Royal Castle Gardens - is a Renaissance garden laid out in the early 16th century on the east wing of the Royal Castle.
Decius Park - is a park in the Las Wolki city forest, laid out in 1535 in the Renaissance style.
The Gardens of the Archaeological Museum in Kraków - is an early 16th-century Renaissance garden in the Old Town, originally laid out by the Discalced Carmelites.
The Botanical Garden - is a botanical garden of the University of Kraków, created in 1783 east of the Old Town.
The Schützenpark - is a park east of the old town that was laid out in 1831 by the Schützenvereinigung.
The Krakauer Park - is a park to the east of the old town, which was laid out in 1885 based on the Viennese model on the site of a site formerly used by the Austrians for military purposes.
The Mehoffer Garden - is a park west of the old town that was created in 1907 by the artist Józef Mehoffer on his private property.
City Forest - City Forest stretches north of the Vistula over much of Kraków's hilly west, which is already part of the Kraków-Częstochowa Jura. There are numerous karst formations, the Kraków Zoo, monasteries and castles, and vineyards.



Rakowicki Cemetery - from 1801 with numerous historical tombs, one of the largest municipal cemeteries in Poland. Expanded in 1920 to include a military cemetery.
Remuh Cemetery - Jewish cemetery from 1551 with numerous Renaissance and Baroque tombs, the oldest preserved Jewish cemetery in Kraków.
The New Jewish Cemetery - Jewish cemetery from 1800 with numerous tombs from the 19th century, the largest Jewish cemetery in Kraków.
Mogiła Cemetery - from 1347, officially opened as a municipal cemetery in 1836 with numerous historical tombs in the Mogiła district.
Old Podgórze Cemetery - from 1784 with numerous historical tombs in the Podgórze district.
Podgórze Cemetery - from 1900 with numerous historical tombs in the Podgórze district at the foot of Krak Hill.
The Evangelical Cemetery - laid out before 1626, with numerous historical tombs in the Łuczanowice district.
numerous military cemeteries from the time of the First World War, when numerous soldiers on both sides died when the Russian army invaded Galicia in the Battle of Kraków in the first months of the World War.


What to do


Listed are just some of the most famous of Kraków's more than 30 theaters.

1 Teatr Stary. The Old Theater in the Old Town dates back to the 18th century and is considered the most traditional stage in Kraków. It is named after the actress Helena Modrzejewska, who first appeared here in 1865.
2 theaters in the. Juliusza Słowackiego (Teatr Miejski), plac św. Ducha w Krakowie 1 wikipediacommons. The Słowacki Theater is a grand 19th-century building in the northern part of the Old Town. It is named after the poet Juliusz Słowacki.
3 operas. The opera was founded in 1954, the modern new building from 2008 is located near the main train station.
4 Operetka. The operetta is in close proximity to the opera.
5 Teatr Bagatela. The 1918 Bagatela Theater is located in Planty Park, just north-east of the Old Town. It is named after poet Tadeusz Boy-Żeleński.
6 Theater STU. The STU Theater from 1966 is located on the Dichteralleen.
7 Teatr Groteska. The Groteska Theater from 1945 is located on the Dichteralleen and was initially created as a puppet theater for children.
8 Theater KTO. The KTO theater from 1977 was initially created as a student theater that performed in public places.
9 Teatr Ludowy. The People's Theater of 1955 was built in the new Stalinist district of Nowa Huta.
10 Teatr Łaźnia Nowa. The Theater Neues Bad from 2005 was also built in the Nowa Huta district, but as a young new theatre.
11 Teatr Barakah. The Theater Barakah from 2004 was also created as a young new theater in the former Jewish district of Kazimierz.
12 Teatr El Jot. The El-Jot Kraków Chamber Opera theater from 1991 was also built in the former Jewish district of Kazimierz.
13 Teatr Nowy. The New Theater from 2006 was also built in the former Jewish district of Kazimierz.



Kraków is known for its old tradition of literary cabaret, which is maintained to this day.
14 Piwnica pod Baranami. One of the most famous cabaret theaters. The legendary Polish chanson singer Ewa Demarczyk had her first performances in "Piwnica pod Baranami". She is still closely connected to the cabaret cellar to this day.
15 Jama Michalika. One of the most famous cabaret theaters.
16 holes Camelot. A new, young cabaret.


Regular events

Hourly trumpet call from the tower of St. Mary's Church (played by a trumpeter)
International Sea Shanties Festival - (February)
International Festival of Alternative and Experimental Theater - Krakowskie Reminiscencje Teatralne - (March)
Organ Music Days - (April)
Off Camera - (April) - international festival of independent cinema
Krakowskie Noce - Kraków Nights - (from May to September) - free entry to five night events:
Night of the Museums
night of the theatres
Night of Jazz
Cracovia Sacra Night (church music)
Night of Poetry

Photomonth - (May) - Photofestival
International Festival of Short Films - (May)
Juvenalia - Student Festival - (May)
ArtBoom Festival - (June)
Wianki - (June) - celebration of the beginning of summer
Festival of Jewish Culture - (June) - one of the highlights of Kraków's cultural year
Bajit Chadasz - Jewish cultural festival
Jazz Festival in “Pod Baranami” - (July)
Pierogi Festival in the Small Market
Festival "Classical Music in Historical Places" - (August)
Festival "Live Music Festival" - (August)
Festival of Jazz Trumpeters - "Miles Davis Memorial Night" - (September)
Festival "Sacrum Profanum" - (September) - Modern music in ancient church buildings
Cracovia Music Festival - (September/October) - International Choir Festival and Orchestral Festival
Festival "Genius Loci" in Kazimierz - (October)
Festival "Unsound" - (October) - Festival of experimental music
Etiuda&Anima - (November) - international film festival
Christmas market at the main market - (November/December)
Cracow Nativity Scene Competition - (December)



There are many exchange offices in Kraków, which you should also use, as the exchange rate is usually better than at Kraków Airport or the main train station. Shops in Kraków are not expensive even by Polish standards and very cheap compared to Western European ones. You can always snag a few bargains at markets and in smaller shops. You can and should haggle at markets. In Poland there are no shop opening time restrictions for smaller shops. Many shops are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Large supermarkets have to close on some Sundays.

In Kraków there are numerous large shopping centers, but also many small corner shops where you can browse for that special souvenir

1 Galeria Krakowska, Pawia 5, 31-154 Kraków, Polonia . one of the largest shopping malls in Poland, centrally located at the main train station.
2 Bonarka City Center . large shopping mall south of the Vistula.
3 Gallery Bronowice. large shopping mall in the northwest of Kraków.
4 Kazimierz Gallery . large shopping mall east of the Kazimierz district.
5 Centrum Handlowe Serenada . large shopping mall in the north of Kraków.
6 Cloth Hall (Sukiennice w Krakowie), Rynek Główny . medieval shopping mall in the center of the main market with numerous souvenir shops.



Polish cuisine has many specialties such as Żurek, bigos, pierogi, borscht, uszka, gołąbki, flaki, etc. Polish meat products enjoy a high reputation around the world, such as Kraków, which originated in the city. Other local specialties are the obwarzanek and the bagel, which has become extremely popular, especially in the USA. Among the most famous local breweries are Okocim and Żywiec. The vodka, whose origin goes back to the nearby town of Sandomierz, is either clear, e.g. B. Wyborowa, with aromas, e.g. B. Grasovka or Żołądkówka. The local vodka producer is called Krakus. In the urban area there are several vineyards on the southern slopes of the Silberberg above the Vistula, which are grouped around the Bielany Monastery. There are more vineyards in the vicinity. Also drinking honey and Nalewkas, old Polish specialties with roots in the Kraków region. Groceries and dining out are inexpensive in Kraków. See also the relevant section on Polish cuisine in the Poland article.

The cheapest places to eat are in the university canteens near the city center or in the student district and in the milk bars, which are signposted as Bar Mleczny.

Restauracja Monarchia, Kraków-Kazimierz, Józefa 6. Tel.: +48 12 430-60-13.
1 U Babci Maliny, Ulica Sławkowska 17 (Old Town). Rustic interior, good traditional Polish cuisine in a milk bar style at reasonable prices, tucked away in the basement of a university building.
Bistro Kulinarne Rozmaitosci, Podbrezezie 2 (Kazimierz). Unpretentious bistro with homemade pierogi, soups and smoothies. Perhaps the best pierogi in Kraków, cheap prices, cash only.
2 Bar Smak, Karmelicka 10. Tel.: +48 12 431 21 49. Small place with only a few seats, quickly overcrowded, but very good Polish home cooking at reasonable prices with large portions. Open: daily 11am-10pm. Price: Main dishes from 8 PLN, cash only.
3 Gościniec Pod Zamkiem, Kraków-Kazimierz, ul. Stradomska 11. Tel.: +48 12 292 22 12, e-mail:

4 Podkowa, Plac Wolnica 10 (Kazimierz district). Phone: +48 12-3414966. Good Polish cuisine in a loving ambience. The somewhat playfully designed inner courtyard with its fresh air places is very nice. Open: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.
Restauracja Zdybanka, 3/1 Szczepańska Street (between the Main Square and the Teatr Bagatela tram stop). Tel.: +48 12 426 4072, e-mail: Located in a ground-level barrel vault, this restaurant primarily offers good grilled dishes, including vegetarian dishes, created by the young team with fresh ideas and a subtle Polish touch. The portions are plentiful, the prices are reasonable given the good quality, and the service is good. Open: daily 11:00 a.m. - 11:00 p.m.
5 Restauracje Sioux, Rynek Główny 22 (right on the main square). Phone: +48 12 421 3462, email: The Sioux is part of a chain with currently (March 2014) 8 restaurants in major Polish cities. The focus is on steaks, the quality is good, the price is reasonable considering the central location, the portions are generous, and the restaurant is lovingly decorated in a Wild West style.
6 Szynk, ul. Podbrzezie 2 (near the Temple synagogue). Tel.: +48 694 029 530. Fine Polish cuisine, mainly meat dishes (e.g. duck or rabbit), but also fish; attentive service. Open: daily 12pm-10pm. Price: main dishes 25–48 zł, draft beer 0.5 l 9 zł.

7 Restauracja Wierzynek, Rynek Główny 16, 31-008 Kraków (directly on the Main Square). Phone: +48 12-424-9600, e-mail: Wierzynek considers itself one of the oldest restaurants in Europe, dating back to the Wierzynek Festival during the Kraków Congress in 1364. There is excellent food that combines haute cuisine with traditional Polish cuisine in a medieval-modernized ambience with excellent service. Open: daily from 1 p.m. to 11 p.m.
8 Trzy Gęsi ("Three Geese"), ul. Kupa 7. Tel.: +48 602 690 494. Chic restaurant with modern European cuisine and a seasonally changing menu. The tasty creations are also visually beautifully prepared. The portions aren't small, but they're big enough to fill multiple courses. You should check the bill carefully. Open: daily 1 p.m. to 11 p.m. Price: main dishes 26–69 zł.


Night life

Most of the nightlife takes place under the historic pavement. Cafes and restaurants, jazz clubs and discotheques have moved into many of the old brick vaults. Life pulsates here in the evenings. In recent years, however, Kazimierz has also developed into the "in" district of Kraków, overtaking the old town. Many bars and pubs are concentrated around the "Plac Nowy".



Anyone looking for cheap and clean accommodation should stay in a student residence (see Żaczek: Hotel Studencki). The rooms are very modern and on request you can also get a room with an integrated bathroom (only a small surcharge). There are also single rooms. The equipment is very modern and most of the rooms are newly renovated (there is usually also a radio/kettle). The reception is open 24 hours a day and the students are very friendly and helpful. The hotel is very well located on the outskirts of the center. Supermarkets and train stations are also in the immediate vicinity.

1 «Bursa Jagiellońska» hostel, ul. Śliska 14, Kraków XIII. Podgorze, PL 30-516. Tel.: +48 12 3973113, mobile: +48 501 721949, fax: +48 12 3973118, e-mail: Hostel in a Polish old-new building and residential area. Bed linen and towels are included in the price. Towels can be obtained from reception on request. Open: Breakfast 07:30-11:00. Check in: 11:00 am. Check out: 11:00 am. Price: SR 65 PLN. pzpn, double room 110 PLN. pZpN, 3 bed MZ 132 PLN. pZpN, 4 bed MZ 164 PLN. pZpN, 5 bed MZ 200 PLN. pZpN, 6 bed MZ 240 PLN. pZpN, 10% discount for students, teachers and pilgrims. Prices are calculated without breakfast. BB costs 12 zł. pPpN extra (as of 2019). Accepted payment methods: Mastercard, Visa.
Facilities and services available: Towels (on deposit), Luggage storage, Internet access LAN (no WiFi), Room for bicycles, City maps, Possibility of laundry / washing machine.
Arrival: nearby public transport stop Smolki, can be reached by tram lines № 8, 10, 19, 23.
From Kraków Main Railway Station walk to the "Dworzec Główny" tram stop south of the old station building. Get on the № 10 towards Łagiewniki. Get off at the 7th stop "Smolki" (it's the second stop after the Vistula). Then go along Kalwaryjska Street about 150 m in the direction of travel and turn right onto Śliska Street.
2 Hostel «Kadetus», Zwierzyniecka 25, PL 31-105. Phone: +48 12 422 36 17, email: Hostel in a Polish old-new building and residential area. Bed linen and towels are included in the price. Towels are available on request at the reception. Open: Breakfast 08:00 - 10:30.
Facilities and services available: Free internet access (WLAN), free luggage storage, 24-hour reception, airport reception, guarded parking lot, bike rental, laundry.
Getting there: nearby public transport stops Filharmonia and Jubilat can be reached by tram lines № 1, 2, 6, 8, 13, 18.
From the Main Train Station (Kraków Główny) you can either take tram line 2 to the stops mentioned above, or walk the two kilometers across the Old Town.
3 4UHostel, Dietla 31/7, Kraków (near the tram stop, south of the castle). Phone: +48727933259. Small hostel on the second floor of an apartment building. Check-in: 2:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. Check-out: until 11:00 a.m.
4 Green Hostel, ul. Krakowska 1, Kraków (the intersection of Dietla and Krakowska streets). Accommodation in the center of Kraków. Check-in: 2:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. Check-out: until 11:00 a.m.
Overview of other hostels.

5 Amadeus Hotel, Mikołajska 20. Tel.: +48 12 429 60 70. The hotel was built in an ancient building in beautiful surroundings, near the Old Town and the green areas surrounding Kraków. Nearby there is the building of the Academy of Music and the Słowacki Theater, which was the largest theater in Habsburg Galicia. The theater is now famous as the opera stage and operetta stage of the royal city of Kraków. Feature: ★★★★.
Grand Felix, Osiedle Złotej Jesieni 12, 31-827 Kraków. Tel.: +48 12 681 86 00. Price: upper middle class.
6 Hotel Gródek, Na Gródku 4, 31-028 Krakow (On the eastern edge of the Old Town (Stare Miasto), a five-minute walk from the Main Market Square (Rynek Główny)). Phone: +48 12 4214865, email: Very centrally located boutique hotel. English speaking staff. Organizes excursions. Price: double room €95.
Hilton Garden Inn Krakow. Modern chain hotel southwest of the Vistula near the city center. Feature: ★★★★.
Hilton Garden Inn Krakow Airport. Modern chain hotel located directly opposite the airport terminal. Feature: ★★★★.
Holiday Inn Krakow City Centre. Hotel of the well-known US chain with a historic, newly renovated main building. Feature: ★★★★.
7 Hotel «Metropolitan», ul. Berka Joselewicza 19, Kraków I. Kazimierz, PL 30-031. Tel.: +48 12 4427500, mobile: +48 696 737708, fax: +48 12 4427501, e-mail: Boutique hotel with a total of 59 rooms (27 classic rooms, 24 superior rooms with extra bed and 8 suites), in a former residential building with its side wing and back building from the 19th century, to which two additional floors have been added. The old town is about 20 minutes and the main train station about 30 - 40 minutes away on foot. Feature: ★★★★. Accepted payment methods: Mastercard, Visa
Equipment and services available: towels, hair dryer, TV with satellite reception. Luggage storage, wireless Internet access, safety deposit box at reception.
How to get there: the nearby public transport stop Miodova can be reached by tram lines № 3, 9, 19, 24, 50 or by night line № 69.
From Kraków Main Railway Station walk to underground tram stop "Dworzec Główny Tunel" and get on tram № 50 towards Kurdwanów. At the 3rd Miodova stop on Starowiślna St. exit. Walk back in the opposite direction to the junction with Berka Joselewicza Street. Turn right there and then after about 20 m on the right-hand side.
Radisson Blu Hotel Krakow. Modern Scandinavian style hotel in a central location. Feature: ★★★★.
Sheraton Grand Krakow. Luxury hotel of the Marriott chain directly on the Vistula with a view of the Wawel. Feature: ★★★★★.



Cracow universities maintain exchange programs, e.g. B. Erasmus, with universities in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Polish courses for foreigners are offered by various organizers (including universities) in Kraków.

The most well-known include:



Working in Kraków for EU foreigners is basically possible without any problems, the wages are low compared to Western Europe. German native speakers are often employed as language teachers and have very good chances in this market. Besides, it's not easy to get odd jobs if you don't speak Polish.



Kraków is considered a safe city. However, in large crowds - as everywhere in the world - one should not neglect the necessary care. The Nowa Huta district was long considered a problem area, but the situation has largely calmed down.



The medical care is very good. Most health insurance companies from other EU countries cover the costs of treatment in Poland. You may need to ask your own checkout. Some insurance companies also pay for cures in Poland. There is an emergency medical service. In Kraków there are always some pharmacies on night duty. See also the relevant section in the article on Poland.


Practical advice

Poland is well covered with landline connections and the mobile network is also well developed, which is especially true in large cities like Kraków. Telephone machines were numerous, but are being dismantled more and more, and work with cards, tokens or coins. In Kraków there are numerous Internet cafes with reasonable prices. There are also W-LAN hotspots, the first in Europe was on Kraków's market square. The Polish Post is represented at several locations in Kraków. Letters and postcards usually arrive quickly. Parcels usually take a little longer. Parcels are also carried by private carriers. The shipping costs are lower than in Western Europe.



In Kraków, Polish is spoken with a dialect of Lesser Poland, specifically the Kraków dialect, which is characterized by numerous loan words from the Austrian-speaking world due to its long association with Galicia and Lodomeria. In addition to Polish, many people in Kraków also speak English, German, French and Russian. Spanish and Italian are also very popular among young people.



Kraków is located in the Vistula basin and is surrounded by mountains to the north (Jura, Świętokrzyskie Mountains) and south (Beskydy, Gorce, Pieniny, High Tatras). The Polish winter sports capital of Zakopane in Podhale is only about 70 km away as the crow flies. The historic regions of Spis and Arva, which form the foothills of the Tatras, border on the Podhale. There is also no shortage of castles in the vicinity, such as the Alderhorste in the Jura or the Dunajec castles, as well as palaces, for example in Niepołomice, Sucha Beskidzka, Żywiec or Chęciny. A must-see is the Wieliczka Salt Mine, which is on Kraków's doorstep and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1978. Another medieval salt mine is located in Bochnia. There is also an opportunity to visit the museum of the former concentration camp Auschwitz-Birkenau, which is about 70 km west of Kraków. The memorial is part of the UNESCO World Heritage, as are the monastery and the Calvary in Kalwaria Zebrzydowska or the wooden churches of the Beskids in Lesser Poland. The birthplace of Pope John Paul II Wadowice is of particular interest to Catholic pilgrims. Also worth seeing are the old trading towns on the medieval trade route from Kraków to Buda and Pest, Stary Sącz and Nowy Sącz. Not far from them in the Sandezer Beskids is the Lesser Poland spa triangle of Krynica-Zdrój, Muszyna-Zdrój and Piwniczna-Zdrój. Other spas in the vicinity are Rabka-Zdrój, Szczawnica and Krościenko nad Dunajcem.



Krakow is located in southern Poland, in the central-western part of the Lesser Poland Voivodeship on the Vistula River; in its area there are mouths of the Vistula tributaries: Białuchy (lower course of Prądnik), Rudawa, Dłubnia, Drwina Długa and Wilga. Krakow is located at the junction of several geographical regions: the Krakow Gate, the Oświęcim Basin, the Sandomierz Basin, the Zachodniobeskidzkie Foothills, and the Krakow-Częstochowa Upland. The location of Krakow makes it a base for trips to the Polish mountains or trips to the picturesque Jura Krakowsko-Częstochowska.

The city has a meridional length of 18 kilometers and a latitudinal length of 31 kilometers. Within the administrative borders of Krakow, the 20°E meridian intersects with the 50°N parallel (the only case of intersection with full tens of degrees in Europe).

The following communes are adjacent to Krakow: Igołomia-Wawrzeńczyce, Kocmyrzów-Luborzyca, Koniusza, Liszki, Michałowice, Mogilany, Niepołomice, Skawina, Świątniki Górne, Wieliczka, Wielka Wieś, Zabierzów, and Zielonki. These communes belong to three poviats neighboring Krakow: Krakowski, Wieliczka and Proszowicki.


Natural environment

The longitudinally elongated axis of the city is the Vistula valley. The river network is formed by the Vistula, its right tributary the Wilga and the left tributaries: Rudawa, Białucha, Dłubnia, Sanka and others.



Heat record: 38.4 °C (June 30, 1833)
Cold record: −38.1 °C (Mydlniki, February 10, 1929), −35.5 °C (Rakowice, February 10, 1929), −33.1 °C (Astronomical Observatory of the Jagiellonian University, February 10, 1929)
Rainfall record: 313 mm (July 1903)



Parks and nature protection
There are 43 parks in Kraków, which together cover approx. 397 ha, which is slightly more than 1% of the total area of the city.

There are 5 nature reserves in Kraków with a total area of 48.6 ha (0.15% of the city's area). In the area of the city of Krakow, there are small green areas that are part of the Jurassic Landscape Parks Complex. This team deals with the protection of the areas of the Jura Krakowsko-Częstochowska, e.g. fragments of the Bielańsko-Tyniecki, Tenczyński and Dolineki Krakowskie parks, along with their buffer zones. In addition, the natural refuge of the Kraków-Częstochowa Upland is part of the CORINE biotopes program due to its flora, fauna, geomorphology and landscape.

The western part of Krakow is the so-called The Krakow area is part of the Polish ecological network, and part of the city is located within the ecological corridor of the Vistula River. Rivers, their valleys and water reservoirs are one of the most interesting places in Krakow from the natural point of view. In the southern part of the slopes of limestone hills, they offer conditions for the development of thermophilous vegetation of xerothermic grasslands and thickets.


Ecological use

Uroczysko in Rząska – an area partly located in the commune of Kraków and partly in Zabierzów, occupies about 59 ha. The purpose of creating the use was to protect the swamp violet - an endangered species, which in 2001 was entered on the list of the Polish Red Book of Plants. The site also protects the remains of forest and water ecosystems in this area.
Łąki Nowohuckie – an area of approximately 57 ha. This use was approved in 2003 by the Krakow City Council and is located near the Central Square. It was created to protect semi-natural plant communities (wet meadows) in the Vistula valley.
Staw Dąbski – an area of 2.53 ha. This use was approved in 2010 by the Krakow City Council and is located in District II Grzegórzki (Dąbie), in the vicinity of Galeria Krakow Plaza. The main subject of protection is the pond's ecosystem with rare animal species, such as the great Anodonta cygnea and the Rhodes sericeus - symbiotic species of mussels and fish, listed in the Polish Red Book of Animals.
Prądnik Valley - an area of approximately 14.15 ha (14.145) created by the resolution of the City Council of Krakow No. LX/782/08 of December 17, 2008. It is located along the Prądnik River (Białuchy) from ul. Górnickiego to the city limits of Krakow. The main purpose of establishing the use is to preserve the naturally meandering riverbed of the Prądnik river, along with the habitat of e.g. 19 species of mammals (including noctule bat, beaver and otter) and 51 species of birds (including gray wagtail - the only confirmed place of occurrence in Krakow).
Pond at ul. Kaczeńcowa - an area of 0.82 ha, created by the resolution of the City Council of Krakow of December 19, 2007. It is a pond located in the valley of the Dłubnia River in Nowa Huta-Bieńczyce in the XVI Bieńczyce District. It was created to protect the refuge of several dozen species of birds, butterflies and molluscs. The pond and its surroundings are protected.
The pool of the Rzewny stream - an area of 2.77 ha, was created by the resolution of the Krakow City Council of December 19, 2007. It was created to protect three types of habitats: forest (mixed forest and alder forest), meadow and rush. This area is a refuge for many species of birds, among which a large group are birds of prey and owls. It is located between the cemetery in Borek Fałęcki and ul. Jeleniogórska and covers a part of the valley of a small Potok Rzewny.
Uroczysko Kowadza – an area of 1.82 ha, established by a resolution of the Krakow City Council of December 17, 2008. Created to protect xerothermic grasslands with a fauna of rare species of insects in Tyniec at ul. Świętojańska.
Forest in Witkowice.



There are 2 health resorts in Krakow (there are parks in both of them):
In Swoszowice - in its area there are two springs of healing water, Zdrój Główny and Napoleon, which provide unique mineral waters rich in sulphate anion, bicarbonate anion, calcium cation, magnesium cation. The sulfur content in the waters ranks Swoszowice 5th in the world and 4th in Europe. In the spa, rheumatic diseases are also treated with baths with sulfur water and mud.
In the health resort Mateczny, biological regeneration and balneology treatments are performed.


Air pollution

According to a report by the World Health Organization in 2016, Krakow was classified as the eleventh most polluted city in the European Union.

The geographical location makes it difficult to ventilate the city, which is why it is often shrouded in smog, especially during the heating season. Krakow is at the forefront of the ranking of European cities with the most polluted air. Krakow's air is polluted mainly with PM10 and PM2.5 dust and toxic benzo(a)pyrene. The result of particulate pollution, apart from the obvious health consequences, is a noticeable reduction in the transparency of the air in the city.

The sources of pollution are mainly solid fuel stoves (34%) and the influx of dust from outside the city (36%), but also local industry (17%) and cars (13%). Heating stoves are also responsible for 68 percent. the emission of carcinogenic benzo(a)pyrene, which - according to the calculations of the Krakow Smog Alarm - the amount inhaled by Cracovians per year is the same as in the case of smoking about 2,500 cigarettes.

Research conducted by scientists from the Collegium Medicum of the Jagiellonian University and Columbia University in New York shows that women from Kraków who were exposed to PM2.5 above 35 µg/m³ during pregnancy gave birth to children with an average birth weight of 128 grams, shorter length body and an average head circumference of 0.3 cm. In winter, residents of Krakow are advised to shorten the time spent in the open air and to avoid physical exertion, such as running. At the same time, in 2015 Kraków recorded the most favorable life expectancy parameters among Polish subregions.

The city increased the budget for the fight against smog, and a regulation was passed prohibiting the burning of coal in heating furnaces. The ban was supposed to come into force in 2018, but in August 2014 it was revoked by the Provincial Administrative Court in Krakow. Another attempt to introduce a ban was made in January 2016. According to the resolution adopted at that time, from September 1, 2019, smoking is prohibited in Krakow, among others. coal and wood.



The full title of the city is the Capital Royal City of Krakow. Krakow is the depositary of the Polish emblem. As the only city in Poland, it has the right to use the emblem of the Polish State in its coat of arms. Such a possibility, according to heraldic symbolism, is available only to capital cities and regions.

The author of the first written source in which Kraków appears in 966 is Ibrahim ibn Jakub. In Latin documents in 973 it appears as Cracoua.

The linguist Jerzy Nalepa claims that the root krak means a river branch.

Cities with similar names are located in eastern Germany and Austria, once inhabited by Slavs: e.g. Cracau - a right-bank district of Magdeburg, Krackow, a few kilometers from the Polish-German border, southwest of Szczecin, Krakow am See, south of Rostock, Krakau – 100 km west of Graz, 30 km north of Villach and Klagenfurt. In the Czech Republic, in the Rakowicki district, there is the town of Krakov, with the nearby Krakovec castle, several dozen kilometers west of Prague. The Ukrainian city of Krakowiec, on the Polish-Ukrainian border, is located south-east of Lubaczów.

There are speculations that the name may derive from the Old Slavonic name of the cemetery "cancer".

According to a legend recorded at the end of the 12th century by Wincenty Kadłubek, the name of Krakow comes from the name of Prince Krak, while in Czech legends there is a figure of Prince Krok.

The historical function of Krakow is referred to by its full name - Capital Royal City of Krakow, legally sanctioned by the Council of Ministers, as well as earlier by the supreme state authorities of the Second Republic of Poland, which used this name in their legal acts. Also the abbreviated name, i.e. St. Król. city of Krakow, the city of Krakow or the table. King. The city of Krakow. Some of these laws are still in force today. Internationally, Krakow is perceived as the "spiritual and scientific heart of Poland"



Krakow is one of the oldest cities in Poland, with many valuable architectural buildings. There are many institutions and cultural institutions that collect priceless monuments. In the past, the city belonged to the Hanseatic League associating the most important trade centers in Europe.

Until 1795, Krakow was formally the capital of Poland, and until 1611, the seat of the rulers of the Polish state. It was a royal city of the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland. The city had the right to actively participate in the act of electing the king.


Middle Ages

The first documented mention of Kraków is the account of the Cordoba merchant Ibrahim ibn Jakub from 965, in which he mentions a rich city surrounded by forests, situated at the crossroads of trade routes.

The oldest settlement center was on the defensive Wawel and was one of the strongholds in the tribal state of the Vistulans. The lands of the Vistulans could for some time, in the last quarter of the 9th century, have been under the rule of the Great Moravian State, but there is no direct evidence for this. In the 10th century (probably between 960 and 986), Kraków became dependent on Bohemia, ruled by the first rulers of the Přemyslid dynasty. Around 990, the stronghold found itself within the borders of the Piast state, later becoming one of the main seats of the kingdom (Latin: sedes regni principalis); attempts to precisely determine the time of incorporation into the Piast state oscillate between 987 and 989. The first reliable written mention of Krakow comes from the Dagome iudex document from around 992. On the Vistula River, next to Wawel, on a small hill made of Jurassic limestone, according to legend, there once stood a pagan temple, where the Romanesque church of St. st. Michael the Archangel. At least from 1000, Krakow was the seat of the bishopric, and during the reign of Casimir the Restorer, Krakow became the main ducal seat.

During the period of the division of districts, Krakow was the seat of the senior prince, but over time, the Krakow dukes lost their actual supremacy over other Piast rulers. In 1241, the city was destroyed during the Mongol invasion. This could have contributed to the failure of the first location of Kraków, which was most likely planned at the beginning of the 13th century. On June 5, 1257, following the example of Wrocław, Duke Bolesław V the Chaste, his mother Grzymisława and wife St. King granted the town a location privilege under Magdeburg law in Kopernia near Pińczów. The founders were three mayors: Gedko Stilvoyt, Jakub from Nysa and Dytmar Wolk from Wrocław. The newly laid out town was inhabited mainly by newcomers from Silesia and Germany, which explains the fact that the Kraków townspeople spoke German until the 16th century. It was then that the characteristic checkerboard layout of the town was created, in which the preserved earlier elements were fitted (Grodzka Street, St. Mary's Church). Between Krakow and Wawel there was a settlement of Okół, a former borough, which was incorporated into Krakow by King Władysław Łokietek after the revolt of mayor Albert.

Krakow obtained the right of warehouse in 1306.

In 1320, Władysław Łokietek was crowned in the Wawel Cathedral, symbolically ending the period of division in the district. Since then, until 1734, Krakow was the place of coronation of Polish kings.

In the 14th century, two more towns were founded on the outskirts of Kraków: Kazimierz (1335) in the south and Kleparz (1366) in the north.

As the capital of one of the European powers in the 15th and 16th centuries, Krakow developed in terms of architecture, trade, crafts, culture and science. The Wawel Castle complex was rebuilt and expanded in the Renaissance style. The university established in 1364 was renovated. The Barbican was also built together with the circle of city walls.


Modern history (second half of the 15th century–19th century)

Krakow after the transfer of the royal court
From 1493, the citizenship of Krakow gave the privilege of owning land.

After the Union of Lublin and the establishment of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Kraków found itself on the sidelines of a great country. Seyms and elections of new monarchs were held near Warsaw, which was located more or less halfway between the capitals of the Crown and Lithuania.

From 1596, the process of moving the royal court of Sigismund III Vasa from Krakow to Warsaw began, which ended around 1611. Warsaw was granted the title of His Majesty's residence city, but Krakow remained the formal capital of the Republic of Poland until the last partition of Poland. The Wawel Cathedral remained the place of coronations and burials of Polish kings, and Kraków - the capital and royal city, where other capital institutions, such as the Crown Treasury, functioned. Even in later times, the Turkish vizier Kara Mustafa wrote in correspondence to Jan III Sobieski, who was associated with Wilanów: "I will destroy your Krakow...".

With the fall of the Commonwealth, the fall of Krakow began. The war damage severely undermined the city's position and hindered its development. For the first time, Krakow was destroyed by foreign troops in 1655, during the "Swedish Deluge" (the suburbs, however, suffered heavily already in 1587, during an attempt to capture the city by Archduke Maximilian III Habsburg). In the years 1656–1657, another siege of the city took place, this time defended by the Swedes.


Austria-Hungary and Galicia

In the 18th century, Kraków was conquered by Prussian, Swedish, Austrian and Russian armies. On March 24, 1794, Tadeusz Kościuszko swore an oath to the nation on the Krakow market, thus starting the uprising.

On June 15, 1794, the Prussian army entered Kraków. The Prussians garrisoned Wawel and set up military depots there. Jewels and coronation insignia were looted from the crown treasury, which were transported to Berlin and then partly incorporated into the Prussian treasury and melted down or sold for war purposes. The Prussians left Kraków in 1795.

After the Third Partition of Poland, Kraków was occupied by the Austrians. Aleksander Rożniecki - a cavalry commander, participating in the Austro-Polish war, starting from Raszyn, with a detachment - an outpost, reached Krakow on July 14, 1809 (the day before Prince Poniatowski) and broke the last resistance of the Austrians before the victorious entry of the prince.

On October 14, 1809, under the treaty of Schönbrunn, Kraków and Podgórze were annexed to the Duchy of Warsaw as the capital of the department. In 1813, it became the seat of the government of the Duchy of Warsaw. In the years 1815-1846, it was the capital of a small, formally independent state - the Republic of Krakow. During this period, a thorough modernization and reconstruction of the city, which was still stuck in the medieval urban layout, began. Most of the city walls were demolished, the moat was filled in, in its place a park - Planty was created. After the Krakow Uprising, organized against the Austrian domination, but also against three invaders at once (i.e. the so-called "protection states" of the Republic of Krakow), the city was annexed by Austria in 1846, within whose borders it remained until 1918. The name Rzeczpospolita Krakowska was replaced a new one: the Grand Duchy of Krakow. From then on, the Austrian emperor used the title of Grand Duke of Kraków.

In 1850, a great fire destroyed about 10% of the city's area.

According to the Austrian census of 1900, 91,323 people lived in 2,099 buildings in Kraków on an area of 832 hectares, of which 64,209 (70.3%) were Catholics, 25,670 (28.1%) Jews, 727 (0. 8%) Greek Catholics, and 717 (0.8%) other religion or denomination, 78,563 (86%) were Polish, 6,576 (7.2%) German, 219 (0.2%) Ruthenian, and 1,092 (1.2%) other languages.


20th century

The beginning of the 20th century and the interwar period
At the beginning of the new century, major changes took place in Krakow - also in the city's technical infrastructure. On February 14, 1901, during the presidency of Józef Friedlein, the municipal waterworks named after Franz Józef were opened. The water tank was built at the foot of the Kościuszko Mound, 49 m above the level of the Market Square. Water flowed into the city through a pipe with a diameter of 70 cm and filled the water supply network with a length of 66 kilometers. Initially, in a population of 80,000 inhabitants of Krakow, there was statistically one liter of tap water per person per day.

On July 12, 1903, Krakow was hit by a flood - the largest since 1813. The height of the Vistula River in the city reached 4 m 52 cm. The Podgórski bridge was in danger of breaking, and the water also threatened the municipal gasworks. From Podgórze, through the areas of Zawiśle, Zwierzyniec, Błonia Krakowskie, up to Nowa Wieś and Łobzów, a huge pool was created from the combined waters of the Vistula, Wilga and Rudawa. In the flooded districts, communication was carried out by boats and rafts. Under the influence of this natural disaster, it was decided to regulate the Ore Mountains in conjunction with delineating its new channel. The project was implemented in the years 1903–1910. The new mouth of the Rudawa was placed at right angles to the Vistula, as a result of which part of the buildings of the Norbertine monastery were cut off. The last mill in Krakow was also demolished. The immediate surroundings of the monastery also underwent significant changes - an embankment and a causeway with a new road and a high bridge were built. These changes caused numerous protests by lovers of monuments. The city experienced another major flood in 1925. In the years 1910–1915, a regulatory plan for Greater Krakow was announced and partially implemented, under which the towns, settlements and villages located in its vicinity were included in the administrative borders of Krakow.

In 1915, Podgórze, a city founded in 1784 on the opposite bank of the Vistula, was incorporated into Kraków.

On August 6, 1914, the 1st Cadre Company with Józef Piłsudski set off from Krakow. It was the first Polish army since the partitions of Poland, and in fact another uprising in the history of the Republic of Poland. The 1st Company crossed the border of Congress Poland with the intention of liberating the rest of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. The participation of the inhabitants of Krakow in the preparation of this uprising was decisive. Shortly afterwards, legionary formations, such as the 3rd Legions Infantry Regiment in 1914, were formed in Krakow and from Krakow to the front of the fight against the Russians.

At the beginning of 1918, pro-independence sentiments intensified in Krakow, which was reflected in the manifestation on January 20. The situation was aggravated by the announcement of the provisions of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk on February 11. The demonstrations began on February 12 with the demolition of the Prussian consulate, and on February 18 a large protest manifestation took place in the Main Market Square. The strike was undertaken by railwaymen who stopped a train with troops sent to the city by the concerned Austrian authorities near Chrzanów. On the fence of the plot at the corner of the Main Square and ul. st. Jana Street and on the trees along the A-B line, posters with inscriptions hurting the invader appeared, which were removed only under the threat of the use of weapons. On October 12, in response to the manifesto of the Regency Council, the Krakow City Council held a ceremonial meeting during which it fully supported its content. On October 15, Polish delegates in the Viennese parliament made a declaration that henceforth they considered themselves citizens of a free and united Poland. The National Department then summoned parliamentary deputies and deputies to the Council of State in Krakow, who on October 28 adopted a resolution stating that the Polish lands within the former Austrian monarchy already belong to the Polish State, and that a Liquidation Commission was created for these lands.

On October 28, 1918, the Polish Liquidation Commission headed by Wincenty Witos was established in Krakow and took over full power in the city. Kraków, as a result of the mass action of disarming Austrian soldiers, became the first (next to Tarnów) city in the Republic of Poland free from the partitioning power. On October 31, in the afternoon, posters appeared in the city informing Cracovians about this joyful fact.

In the interwar period, just after regaining independence, the Polish central authorities recognized the Wawel castle as a representative building of the Republic of Poland, put to use by the Head of State, and then for the President of the Republic of Poland - by a resolution of the Sejm of the Republic of Poland in 1921, the urban complex at Wawel became one of the official Residence of the President of Poland. The apartment of the President of the Republic of Poland, Ignacy Mościcki, has been preserved to this day.

In the autumn of 1923, as a result of the deteriorating economic situation and social conflicts, bloody street clashes took place in Kraków. On November 5, a general strike was declared. On November 6, under the building of Kasa Chorych (Workers' House) at ul. Dunajewski at On 9, the first clashes with the police took place (20 policemen were injured). Later, an armed mob attacked the police and military cordon, pushing the officers towards ul. Szewska. The army company was surrounded and disarmed. Armed with captured weapons, the demonstrators and militants moved along ul. Szczepańska to the Market Square and planted Planty. In the morning hours there were already regular fights with the use of firearms. A squadron of uhlans sent to the area of ul. Dunajewski. From the windows of the houses and from behind the pillars of the Cloth Hall, another squadron standing in the Market Square next to the Guardhouse was shot at. The military command of the city sent three armored cars to fight. One of them, deprived of infantry support, was captured by demonstrators. Around noon the shots began to fall silent. The entire western part of the city was under the control of the strikers. In the building of the Health Fund, disarmed and wounded soldiers were kept as prisoners. In conditions of chaos and lack of information, the authorities ordered the army and police to cease fire and withdraw from the streets. Negotiations commenced. The strikers immobilized the gasworks and the power plant, as a result of which already at The city began to plunge into complete darkness. Fighting in Krakow, known as the Krakow Uprising, resulted in the death of 14 officers and soldiers; 101 military personnel and 38 policemen were injured. There were also 14 dead on the side of the demonstrators. Also, 4 random civilians were killed and dozens were injured. In addition, 61 horses were killed and 70 injured.

In March 1936, during the suppression of the strike in Polskie Zakłady Gumowe "Semperit" and subsequent street demonstrations, 8 people were killed and 46 people, including 26 policemen, were injured.


German occupation

German troops occupied the city 6 days after the start of World War II. At dawn and in the afternoon of September 1, 1939, a total of 150 Luftwaffe aircraft participated in the raid on the Rakowice-Czyżyny airport in Kraków. The first Polish airman who died in combat was the pilot of the Krakow squadron, Capt. pilot Mieczyslaw Medwecki. The pilot who took off with him, Sec. drink Władysław Gnyś shot down two German planes in the Olkusz area, which were returning from a bomb attack on Kraków. These were the first Polish aerial victories during World War II. On the first day of the war, the pilots of the Krakow II Air Regiment shot down a total of five German planes.

During the German occupation (1939–1945), Kraków functioned as the capital of the General Government. In March 1941, the German occupier closed about 60,000 Jews in the Krakow ghetto. people recognized as Jews according to the racist Nuremberg Laws (25% of all residents of Krakow). Ghetto prisoners were murdered during the liquidation action (March 13–14, 1943) and in the concentration camps in Płaszów, Bełżec and Auschwitz. As a result of this extermination action after World War II, about a thousand Krakow Jews survived.

Many works of art were plundered and taken to Germany, many of which did not return to the country. Kraków suffered minor losses during the bombardment of the city by the Red Army air force.

In 1939, the first underground organization in Poland during World War II, the Organization of the White Eagle, was established in Krakow. In addition to the Krakow District of the Home Army, there was, among others, the scouting organization "Szere Szeregi", whose headquarters was located in Krakow after the fall of the Warsaw Uprising. Numerous other underground groups were active. The underground cultural and educational life also played an important role in the occupied city. at ul. Łobzowska 6, in a book and stationery shop run by Spółdzielnia Księgarska "Czytelnik", there was a meeting point for writers, where underground press and publications were supplied. There, material support was also provided to Krakow writers and artists, using the store's income. The district cell of the Secret Teachers' Organization was located at pl. New, at the premises of the "Szkolnica" Bookshop Cooperative. It dealt with the distribution of textbooks for clandestine teaching (the collection point for teachers was located at pl. Nowy 7 and in the drugstore at ul. Sienna 7), as well as issuing duplicated textbooks for middle school classes in the form of duplicated textbooks (ready scripts were transferred to the store at 13 Szewska Street, where the distribution point was organized). There was also a point for directing candidates to secret university courses. It was also a meeting place for Krakow's writers, such as Kazimierz Czachowski, Tadeusz Kudliński, Tadeusz Seweryn, Jan Wiktor, Wojciech Żukrowski; there was also Prof. Stanislaw Pigon. On the basis of the preserved materials of the District School Office in Kraków, "Szkolnica" alone donated about 30,000 during the occupation. copies of books and textbooks for secret education. An important form of help was also sending food parcels to prisoner-of-war camps and taking care of teachers displaced from Warsaw after the fall of the uprising. One of the main suppliers of textbooks saved from destruction was Stefan Kamiński's bookstore at ul. st. Jana 3. He bought from the Germans entire book collections from liquidated bookshops and libraries. It was another place of underground meetings of people of underground culture and education.

Krakow was to become a German city not only in terms of name and national composition of the population, but also in terms of external appearance. For this purpose, the occupant planned to destroy Polish cultural heritage and expose its own historical tradition. The Germans began the urban "ordering" of the city with demolition in the Wawel area - the then seat of the governor of Dr. Hans Frank. In the years 1940-1941, for example, a tenement house called "Dębno" at the intersection of ul. Grodzka and ul. Podzamcze. Several tenement houses in Kazimierz were also demolished to reveal a view of the Corpus Christi church. Some changes were introduced to Wawel itself (e.g. a new entrance and gate). However, the western district of the city was of particular interest to German builders. The representative government district (Regierungsviertel) was to be a spectacular achievement of German urban planning. It was planned to erect a monumental complex of government buildings in Błonia, over which monuments of the glory of the German arms would dominate in the long term. In 1941, Hans Frank ordered the Kościuszko and Piłsudski mounds to be leveled so that these monuments could be erected in their place, but this plan was never implemented. The occupants also did not have time to expand the town hall or rebuild the Main Square in the Germanic spirit. Only plans and sketches remain. Uprising moods prevailed in the city. Sabotage and liquidation actions were carried out, e.g. an attack on senior SS officers Koppe and Krüger, which is the first attempt on a German dignitary in Poland occupied by the Nazi German Reich, and an unsuccessful attempt on Hans Frank. The Polish Underground was preparing for the uprising in Kraków. Among others, Polish partisan groups concentrated around Krakow. However, the command of the Home Army did not finally decide to announce the uprising in Krakow, both due to the small number of armaments of Poles in the city itself and the inability to significantly arm them by that part of the Krakow Home Army District, which operated outside the city, as well as due to the significant breakdown of the Home Army structures in Krakow during the great round-up (the so-called "Black Sunday"), during which 15,000 people were arrested and transported to the concentration camp in Płaszów in one day.


Recent history

On January 18, 1945, the troops of the 1st Ukrainian Front under the command of Marshal Ivan Konev occupied the city. Kraków, as one of the few Polish cities, did not suffer major losses of material substance during the war, and in 1946 it was the third most populous city in Poland after Łódź and Warsaw.

In the post-war period, the city developed strongly in terms of territory and population. In 1951, Nowa Huta was annexed to Krakow, which, according to the original plans, was to be a separate city[97], planned as the opposite of Krakow, i.e. a working-class city without churches and the social intelligentsia. To this day, one of the historical places in this district is the Town Hall Square, where this institution was to be erected in the plans of the builders of the "socialist city". From January 1, 1957 to May 31, 1975, the city of Kraków constituted a separate, independent province. In 1957, the city was awarded the Order of Polonia Restituta, and in 1966, the Order of Builders of People's Poland.


Timeline of contemporary events (20th–21st centuries)

The first summit of the Visegrad Group in the territory of the Republic of Poland was held in 1991 in Krakow, i.e. just after its establishment, and the theses adopted at that meeting were recorded in the form of the so-called Krakow Declaration. The next summit of the Visegrad Group in Poland was also held in Krakow in 1993.
In 2000, Krakow was awarded the title of the European Capital of Culture.
US President George W. Bush visits Poland May 30-31, 2003. At Wawel Hill, President Bush spoke on the PSI initiative and on expanding Poland's involvement in Iraq.
By a resolution of August 3, 2006, the Senate of the Republic of Poland decided to establish 2007 as the Year of the City of Krakow.
On May 11, 2007, the Presidential Energy Summit began with the participation of the President of the Republic of Poland Lech Kaczyński and the presidents of Central and Eastern European countries.
In June 2007, Krakow celebrated the 750th anniversary of the location of the city.
In 2008, the World Mining Congress was held in Kraków
In 2009, a summit of NATO defense ministers was held in Krakow, the first meeting of this kind in Poland.
On April 18, 2010, the funeral ceremony of the tragically deceased President of Poland Lech Kaczyński and his wife Maria took place in St. Mary's Church, whose coffins were then buried in one of the crypts of the Wawel Cathedral.
On January 17, 2011, in the Wawel Royal Castle, the President of the Republic of Poland, Bronisław Komorowski, awarded the Order of the White Eagle to the creators of culture, including the Nobel Prize winner Wisława Szymborska.
On October 2-4, 2011, Krakow hosted the European Economic Summit entitled Internal Market Forum (SIMFO).
During the Polish presidency in the structures of the European Union, Krakow was designated as one of the cities hosting interstate meetings within the EU at that time.
Since December 7, 2011, the resolution of the Krakow City Council on the establishment of the Old Town Cultural Park, protecting the Old Town, inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, has been in force.
On October 7-9, 2013, a meeting of the presidents of Poland, Ukraine and the presidents of countries belonging to the Arraiolos group was held in Krakow.
In February 2014, the Weimar Economic Summit was held in Krakow.
On May 25, 2014, a local referendum was held in Krakow, in which the inhabitants rejected by a large majority the idea of applying for the organization of the Winter Olympic Games in 2022, while opting for the construction of bicycle paths, a subway and the creation of a video monitoring system.
On July 26-31, 2016, World Youth Day was held.
In July 2017, the 41st Session of the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Committee was held in Krakow
In 2018, Kraków (together with Katowice) hosted the Congress of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.
On April 26-27, 2018, the 4th European Congress of Local Governments took place in Krakow
In June 2019, Krakow hosted the participants of the 15th Congress of the Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC). And he got a seat on the Board of Directors and the Presidency of that organization.
In September 2020, the Three Seas Exchanges Conference was held in Krakow.
On February 6, 2021, the fire of the Archives of the City of Krakow began, the fire lasted 12 days, most of the collected documents were burned.
In April 2022, the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) opened a financial support center for refugees from Ukraine in the "Tauron Arena Kraków". The creation of a UNHCR representation in Krakow was announced.
In 2023, the 3rd European Sports Games will be held in Krakow.