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Going to Krakow next week for a long weekend, any tips/advice?

(7 Posts)
Aimsmum Wed 28-Oct-09 21:36:58

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DannyWotty1 Wed 28-Oct-09 21:57:40

Both Auschwitz and the salt mines (Wieliczka) are musts. Auschwitz is a day in itself. Krakow is beautiful and the centre (Stary Miasto) is small and compact. Don't miss the Jewish sector (Kazimierz) which has had a lot of renovation in past few years and the Wawel (castle) on the hill (you won't be able to miss it). If you are going to the Wawel try and get there early - they have a quota of visitors per day and once that is reached no more visitors are allowed in. Kanonicza Ulitsa is the beautiful road which leads up to the Wawel which also has the Bishop's Palace where Pope John Paul II lived when Archbishop. The Hotel Copernicus is also there - worth a drink in the bar if not staying there.
Eat pirogi (small filled pastry parcels), bigos (hunter's stew), barszcz (beetroot soup). Beautiful city - will be getting Christmassy by now!

GypsyMoth Wed 28-Oct-09 22:02:40

dd returned yesterday from Krakow....weather was mild she said!
she also visited Auschwitz...and Oskar Schindlers factory. its not open yet,but they looked at the outside. Auschwitz was very moving she said....she came home very saddened.

reservejudgement Wed 28-Oct-09 23:34:45

The Salt Mines are an absolute must, I had no idea how fantastic they would be and very glad I persuaded dh to do them as he didn't want to do the salt mines and Auschwitz on the same day. We did and it was very tiring but well worth it.
We ate in Arka Noega in Kazimierz. Food was lovely but it was like eating in my granny's front room, that kind of furniture!grin
The other restaurant we ate in was Chlopskie Jadlo, there are several of these in Krakow and the food is traditional Polish cuisine. I can't remember the name of my starter but it was basically very salty cheese and reminded me of eating bacon. It was lovely but I couldn't finish it, the portion was too generous. They also served bread with two spreads, one of which was a cream cheese, the other turned out to be dripping. I had meat filled cabbage leaves which were very nice.
Enjoy, Krakow is a very special city and I've done lots of city breaks!smile

Aimsmum Thu 29-Oct-09 10:16:01

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lobsters Thu 29-Oct-09 19:15:56

We had a wonderful weekend in Krakow. If you want to do Auschwitz and the salt mines in one day I think you'll need to do an organised tour. There seemed to be a few companies doing them when we were there, certainly the hotel had lots of details on them.
We just did Auschwitz, we got the local bus there and back. The bus station took a little finding, but once there the staff were really helpful, told us the right bay to go to, bought the tickets on the bus. There seemed to be far buses than were actually on the timetable. Going we caught a small minibus type thing that didn't stop many places and was quite quick, coming back we caught something that looked like a coach, was a lot slower and stopped for a while in a nearby town with lots of classic Russian/ Eastern European 60s tower blocks. If you are the kind of people to turn up, go with the flow and figure it will all turn out OK in the end, then local buses are fine. But they did seem a bit random to the untrained eye, and poss not great if you are not too confident.

If the Xmas market is on, it is lovely just to walk round, as is the indoor market. We ended up buying lots of chess sets for people as Xmas presents. The hot wine was lovely and more potent that it tasted.

The only downside of the whole weekend was walking through the stunning town square at 11pm and some drunk 50 something Brits shouting "go on Densie, get yer tits out for Krakow" hmm

It's lovely, hope you have a great time

cakeforbrains Thu 29-Oct-09 19:30:03

You can also get the train to Auschwitz (which seemed a bit freaky TBH). The Polish name for Auschwitz is Oswiecim. From Oswiecim station it is a five minute walk. There were lots of taxi drivers at Krakow station being quite pushy suggesting that we should hire them to get to Auschwitz, wait there all day and then take us back for a small fortune - we politely declined!

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