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We Narrowed It Down For You: Top 5 Things To Do In Krakow

Updated May 17, 2017

Krakow, being the former capital of Poland, still remembers the reigns of great kings, which is not hard to notice when visiting. It is essential to learn more about the history of the city during your stay there, but it is also important to remember not to get too caught up in being a tourist and enjoy other activities along the way. Here is a humble guide to help you experience a balanced trip to the most beautiful city in Poland with, both important must-see attractions and fun activities to help you unwind.

1. Wawel Castle

This is the Krakow biggest must-see. The beautiful Wawel Castle was build in 14th century during the reign of Casimir III and was a home to many Polish kings in the times before the capital of Poland was moved from Krakow to Warsaw. The castle holds an amazing treasury with all of the collected items over the reigns of Polish kings. It is also home to beautiful chambers such as state rooms, royal private apartments, royal gardens, dragon’s den, and the exhibitions “The Lost Wawel” and “Oriental Art.” Wawel Castle is not just another boring destination with beautiful interiors. The castle is a home of one of the most popular Polish legends about the Wawel dragon. The statue of the dragon located just outside the castle on the boulevard by the Vistula River can breathe fire on demand and if you want to an in depth study of the dragon’s history, you can always join a guided tour and learn more about this colorful legend.

Wawel Castle

Address: Wawel 5, 31-001 Kraków, Poland

Opening Hours: 6 am to 6 pm

Duration: around 3 hours required.

Contact: +48 12 422 16 97

Website: Wawel Castle

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Krakow and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Krakow

2. Escape Room in Krakow

Source: Pixabay

After hearing about the adventures of the brave shoemaker and the Wawel dragon, you might crave some adventure in your life as well. Escape room is, as name suggests, an escape room type activity where you can put your deductive skills to use and have fun with your groups of friends. This activity known all around the world is currently all the rage in Poland and is definitely worth giving a shot. So, an escape room is basically a puzzle that will eventually get you out of a locked room. To participate, you usually need a group of 4 to 6 people. The task is to find clues and solve puzzles that will eventually lead your way out of the locked room. You have an hour to complete the task and the shorter you take to solve the puzzle, the better. It is a fun activity that will engage all of your senses and will be a great bonding activity for you and your friends.

Escape Room

Address: Kremerowska 5, Kraków

Price: 100 PLN / 25 USD for a group/hour

Opening Hours: 8 am to 11 pm

Duration: an hour

Contact: +48 690 022 547

Website: Escape Room

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Krakow and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Krakow

3. Horse-drawn carriage in the Main Square

Source: Pixabay

This is not a specific destination, but something that is an absolute must-do in Krakow if you decide to travel there in the warmer months. Horse carriages are usually located in the Main Square and that is also where you will start your journey around the inner city of Krakow. Not only will this attraction make you feel like you are a part of the royal family, but it is also probably the best way to hear more about the city. Usually, the guided tour is not included in the ride, but if you kindly ask to hear more about the destinations you will pass on your way around the city, they will be more than happy to tell you the story of their town. If you want to just relax — that is perfectly fine, too! Just sit back, relax, and enjoy the sun and the clicking of horses’ hoofs on the concrete.

Horse carriage

Address: Main Square, Krakow

Price: around 100 PLN / 25 USD

Opening Hours: varies

Duration: around an hours required.

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Krakow and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Krakow

4. Vistula River boat trip

Source: Pixabay

Another relaxed attraction that cannot be missed in Krakow is the boat trip around the city on the Vistula River. Although only enjoyed in the summer, it is one of the best ways to see parts of the city that would not be otherwise accessible. There are many companies operating the boat trips and they all offer different experiences. Would you like a guided tour? Sure thing! A quiet and romantic sail along the river? You got it! Getting from point A to B? Of course! The possibilities are endless and the sky, or should I say water, is the limit!

Boat trip on Vistula River

Address: Vistula River

Price: varies

Opening Hours: varies

Duration: around 2 to 3 hours

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Krakow and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Krakow

5. Visit St. Mary's Basilica

Source: Pixabay

Lastly, here is another gem and a must-see of the city’s historical monuments — St. Mary’s Basilica. Located on the Main Square, it is hard to overlook both due to its size and beauty. The basilica holds two great attractions — Wita Stworz’s altar and a trumpet player in the tower playing “hejnal.” Starting with the altar from the 15th century, carved by a Polish artist Wita Stworz is one of the most beautiful pieces of sacred art in all of Poland. Accompanied by the beautiful, marble interior of the basilica, it creates an unforgettable experience. Another part is the “hejnal,” which is played at noon and chosen full-hours of the day. It cuts off in the middle as a tribute to the trumpet player killed by an arrow to his throat during the invasion of Tatars, where he played “hejnal” to warn citizens about the danger. This is a piece of Krakow’s history that cannot be missed during your stay there.

St. Mary's Basilica

Address: Main Square, Krakow

Price: around 10 PLN / 2.5 USD

Opening Hours: varies

Duration: around an hour

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Krakow and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Krakow

Make amazing memories!

Whenever you travel, there is a constant battle of wanting to learn more about the destination and experience fun attractions. Remember that you will always find time for both and they are both equally important to make amazing memories, so go out, explore, and have fun!

This article was originally published on Apr 21, 2017

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Natalia Joanna Bajor is a current student at one of Copenhagen's universities. She loves big city destinations and her goal is to visit all European capitals, having made a lot of progress towards...Read more

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