Destinations / City Breaks / Krakow
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Like a piece of great art, Krakow could be considered a Polish masterpiece. A city full of history, but thankfully, never mortally wounded by war, its stunning architecture remains intact and the wonderful Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance structures remain untouched by the ravages of mass invasion.
Krakow survived World War II and the former Nazi concentration camp at Auschwitz (and neighbouring Birkeneau) is a haunting place to visit - unmissable, albeit upsetting, but a stark reminder of man's inhumanity to man. As a city break destination, Krakow is possibly Poland's biggest draw.
The Old Town district with the amazing Wawel Castle is brimming with atmosphere and no surprise that, in 1978, it featured as the first of its kind on the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites. Outside the Old Town, the Jewish Quarter with its silent synagogues also hearkens to the tragic past. Nowadays, Krakow is vibrant, bustling and truly alive. The city boasts a vast array of museums, public art galleries (the Old Town is home to more than 2 million works of art alone!), theatres, concert halls and Opera House.
The famous Wieliczka salt mine is a must see for the unbelievable underground works of brilliance that have been carved and, above ground, visit one of the city's many beautiful parks and gardens. When you visit Krakow, you will feel the energy, the atmosphere and the flavour of this medieval yet thoroughly modern city. A place of great restaurants, marvellous open air coffee houses and outdoor terraces, cafe culture is alive and very well indeed! Nightlife is buzzing with pubs and clubs littering every narrow artery in the city. The dinky Christmas market is also a legend in its own lifetime, so Krakow is surely a city for all seasons.