A First-Timer's Guide to Krakow, Poland

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Advisor - Naomi Mckenna
Curated By

Naomi Mckenna

  • Poland

  • City Travel

  • Food & Wine

  • Arts & Culture

  • Couples Travel

  • History

  • Budget-friendly

  • Sightseeing

rooftop view of a large historic city during the day
Curator’s statement

Krakow is a place where I always feel at home and I fell in love with this beautiful city the first time I set eyes on it. It is still my favourite holiday destination to this day. I guarantee if you give Krakow a chance, you will fall in love too. It is a great cultural and shopping destination, and a holiday for all ages. If you like good food and cheap alcohol, I would definitely check out Krakow.

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Where to stay in Krakow

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Things to do in Krakow

brick cathedral with green lawn in the late afternoon
  • Go to Wawel Castle. The castle now hosts a museum where you can see things like the Crown treasury, state rooms and an exhibition of oriental arts.

  • Visit Schindler's Factory. This museum tells the story of Oskar Schindler who saved the lives of many of his Jewish Labour force during the Holocaust. It also teaches about all aspects of German occupation In Krakow.

  • Visit Wawel Cathedral, the site of many coronations, funerals and burials of monarchs and nobles.

  • Visit the main market square with its undercover market, fountains and many restaurants, shops and bars. While here, visit The Cloth Hall; the bottom floor holds the undercover market and the upper floor houses a art museum.

  • Visit St Mary's Basilica, a striking brick church. Tour the interior where you can see the carved wood alterpiece and climb the tower for beautiful views.

  • Visit the Pharmacy Museum to see such things as old laboratory equipment, rare pharmaceutical instruments, medical books and much more.

Day Trips

  • Take a day trip to Wieliczka Salt Mine which is 14km from Krakow and is one of Poland's top attractions. Take a 2-hour guided tour to see the many tunnels to explore and chapels made from salt.

  • Take a day trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau to learn about the horror that took place during the Holocaust.

Places to eat & drink in Krakow

main market square in a old city with vendor tens lining the street
  • Sasiedzi has polish and international dishes and very relaxed service.

  • Ariel is very atmospheric Jewish restaurant with old fashioned wood furniture and traditional polish dishes.

  • Trattoria Mamma Mia is a Italian restaurant with great pizzas and also good pasta, meat and fish dishes.

  • Corner Burger is an casual American style burger bar with a wide range of fresh cooked burgers.

  • Farina is a seafood restaurant which also serves pasta and traditional Polish food.

  • Sioux is a American steakhouse restaurant right on the main square.

  • Goscina Chata is a traditional Polish restaurant with great service not far from the main square. My favourite restaurant in Krakow.

  • Glo on the square is my favourite place for a drink. They have great service and great cocktails. At 9 pm they have karaoke or a disco. They also serve good pizzas.

Need to Know

For more travel tips, check out Fora Advisor Rebecca Robinson's guide, Things to Do in Krakow, Poland.

Advisor - Naomi Mckenna

Travel Advisor

Naomi Mckenna

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This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Poland.