A short visit to Krakow: our 2,5 day itinerary

Last year I visited Warsaw with a friend, and we decided to include a few days in Krakow. Even though we both preferred less-touristy Warsaw, Krakow is a charming town and has plenty to offer to enjoy yourself a few days. Let me share how we spent our 2,5 days in and around this city!

Day 1: arrival by train & Kazimierz
In the morning we took a train from Warsaw to Krakow, which was super easy and comfortable. The ride takes around 2,5 hours. We arrived in the early afternoon and checked in at our Airbnb, which was located in between the old town and the Kazimierz district, the old jewish district.

After a short break we decided to go out and explore Kazimierz. We just wandered around the district. Before long we came across a ‘beer garden’ that looked very attractive and we decided to grab a beer. Turns out this place, Mleczarnia, is not just a good place for a beer, but also featured in Schindler’s List.

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Me and my travel buddy are big fans of streetart, so we always keep an eye open for colorful murals. And we found one in Kazimierz!
DSC04595We then had dinner at Kolanko No 6, which we would highly recommend. Staff was super friendly, the food was amazing at good prices and this place even has a small garden. It gets busy though, so come early or consider making a reservation!

After dinner we headed over to Singer, a famous bar. It is a nice place for a beer or two, with an interesting decor, but not extraordinary.

Day 2: old town & wodka tasting
The next day it was time to see the old town. We felt energetic so after a coffee on the main square we climbed the tower of St. Mary’s Basilica. We wandered around in the old center, paid a quick visit to the city wall, and then went for lunch.

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The view from St. Mary’s Basilica


After lunch we walked to Wawel Castle, a fortified complex situated just outside the old town on a hill. It consists of several buildings, including a cathedral that you can see on the picture below. I think you can visit parts of the castle, but we didn’t. We just walked around and enjoyed the view.
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After dinner in our apartment, we went to ‘WODKA’ for a wodka tasting. The bartender selected 12 types of wodka (6 per person) for us to try. We liked all of them, but our favourite had to be the ‘salted caramel’ wodka, which was heavenly! This bar is very small and only has a few tables, so it filled up quickly. After a while, two older ladies came in but all tables were taken. Since our table still had two empty chairs we suggested we could share our table. They turned out to be British and we ended up talking and having so much fun together! We hope someday that will be the two of us on a girls’ trip =)

Day 3: Auschwitz and the Wieliczka Salt Mine
For the next morning, we had an impressive yet pretty heavy activity planned: a visit to Auschwitz and Auschwitz-Birkenau. We booked a small group tour and were picked up early. During the ride to Auschwitz we were shown a movie to already give us some background information and prepare us for what we were going to see. The movie was already horrible so we arrived feeling sad before having even stepped foot inside, but it might be a good way to prevent ignorant tourists from not showing the appropriate respect once they arrive. We spent the morning seeing Auschwitz, had a quick lunch inside the van and then went to Birkenau. Both camps were terrible and left a deep impression, but I felt like it was something everyone needs to know.

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One of the few pictures I took in Auschwitz

After those visits, it was time for something else entirely: a quick tour at Wieliczka Salt Mine. Some chambers in this mine just blew me away, since they were of such massive scale! Especially the cathedral had me looking around in wonder.

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The cathedral

After one more night in Krakow, it was time to head back to Warsaw the next day. As I already mentioned, we both preferred Warsaw, but I would really recommend Krakow for a citytrip or a visit if you happen to be in the area.

 

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