Located in the heart of Europe, Krakow is the most popular place in Poland. No wonder why- the beautiful Old Town, delicious food, low prices, and friendly people make this city one of the hottest destinations in the world. If you are planning your Krakow holidays, you will find here everything you are searching for.
Looking for the short breaks to Krakow? Check out the cheapest flights to Krakow!
It’s definitely the most important place to visit in Krakow. The vibrant market square and the surrounding streets are car-free zones, so the only way to get there is to walk.
There are so many things to do there that you can easily spend the entire day wandering around the market square. It’s also the best area to stay in Krakow, as you will have most of the tourist attractions at your fingertips.
Even though there are over 130 (!) churches in the city, Kosciol Mariacki (St Mary’s Basilica) is the most famous one. It’s a landmark of Krakow and Poland in general. Every hour the trumpeter plays the famous hejnał mariacki.
When you hear it, stop whatever you are doing and lookup. The anthem will end up unexpectedly at some point. Why? According to the legend, ages ago, during the Mongol invasion, the trumpeter was shot and he wasn’t able to finish the song. In memory of these tragic events, the anthem is still played with a sudden stop.
Be sure to visit Krakow Underground while on the Market Square, you will have a chance to see what the city looked like in the past. It’s not boring- this Krakow museum is interactive and modern.
Wawel Royal Castle and Cathedral
This is where Polish kings lived. Beautiful, historical, and unforgettable place.
Wawel is well-known not only because of its beautiful castle but also for its mysterious chakra.
It’s believed that under St. Gereon’s chapel there is a chakra that emanates intensive power that can heal illness and gives a strong boost of energy.
Be sure to see the Wawel Dragon breathing fire during your visit to Wawel Royal Castle.
Skip the lines and book your Wawel tour here.
Kazimierz (Jewish Quarter)
The Jewish quarter is located within the walking distance to Rynek. It’s a place you need to visit while in Krakow.
Some say that Kazimierz and Rynek are one huge city center of Krakow. These places are different though. They have different architecture and atmospheres.
Here are some of the best things to do in the Kazimierz area of Krakow:
- visiting the Old Synagogue and Jewish cemetery
- eating zapiekanka u Endziora (which is one of the best places to eat in Krakow)
- going to the Schindler Factory Museum
Skip the lines and book your guided tour to Kazimierz here.
Park Jordana (Jordan Park) and Mis Wojtek Statue
It’s one of the greenest places in Krakow. Located within the walking distance to Rynek, in the student area of the city, Park Jordana is a great place for a stroll.
If you go there be sure to find Mis Wojtek Statue.
Who was Wojtek? He was a bear and he was a Polish soldier. YES, THAT”S RIGHT. A bear was fighting for Poland during World War II. I am not joking.
Read more about Wojtek here.
According to the legend, it’s where the mysterious Mr. Twardowski opened a school of magic and wizardry.
The rocky Skałki Twardowskiego is famous among climbers. It’s a place worth visiting for everyone though. If you are not seeking adventure, you can take a walk between the rocks.
We’ve been there with Misia, our 1,5-year-old daughter and she loved this place! She had fun searching for the snails, frogs, and insects that were hidden in the grass.
There is no entrance fee for Skalki Twardowskiego, so it’s one of the free things to do in Krakow.
Located right next to Skalki Twardowskiego, Zakrzowek is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Krakow. The pristine blue water surrounded by white rocks makes this area a green oasis in the big city. Unfortunately, Zakrzowek won’t be open to the public until 2023. The City of Krakow is currently working on making this place safe to swim.
Even though it’s forbidden, Zakrzowek is usually full of people who just jump over the fence to get into the lagoon area. While we don’t recommend doing so, it’s still worth going to Zakrzowek and seeing the water from one of the viewpoints that it’s open to the public. The addresses are:
– Salezjańska 19
– Wyłom 1
If you want to actually relax on the beach and swim in the lake, head to Kryspinów.
Did you know that John Paul II, the Pope was born and raised in Poland? He was actually living in Krakow for some time.
If you are Christian, then there are 2 places you should visit in Łagiewniki: John Paul II Center (Totus Tuus 32) and the sacred Divine Mercy Sanctuary with a tomb of Saint Faustyna Kowalska.
Interested in getting to know more about John Paul II? Check out this fascinating tour.
Live Butterfly Museum
An amazing place for the entire family! One of the best museums in Krakow. It is not only about butterflies that will be flying around you. You can also pet rabbits, parrots, and other small animals there.
If you buy a combined ticket to Live Butterfly Museum and Mirror Labyrinth (more about it below), you will pay less.
If you wonder what are the things to do in Krakow when it’s raining, go to the Mirror Labyrinth. This place is surreal. You have no idea how difficult it is to walk through the labyrinth full of mirrors. It’s hard to tell whether something that you are seeing in front of you is a passage or another mirror.
If you want to experience something totally different and unforgettable, visit the Mirror Labyrinth.
There are 5 mounds in the city. It’s worth visiting them all, especially if you are looking for nice hiking in Krakow.
– the biggest one is Kosciuszko Mound,
– Pilsudski Mound is the highest,
– the smallest one is John Paul II Mound
– Krakus Mound is a final resting place of Krakus, the legendary founder of the city
– Wanda Mound is a tomb of Krak’s daughter who committed suicide because she didn’t want to get married.
Father Bernatek Footbridge
A must-visit place not only for those who spend their honeymoon in Krakow but also for every couple visiting the city. Father Bernatek Footbridge is a very picturesque place, located equally close to Kazimierz and Rynek.
According to the legend, if you and your partner hang a padlock on this bridge, and then throw the key to the Wisla river, your love will be eternal.
No matter if you believe it or not, doing so is one of the most romantic things to do in Krakow. And yes, our padlock is still hanging there, since 2012.
aleja Kasy Oszczędności Miasta Krakowa 14
Located on the outskirts of the city, this Zoo may not be among the best in the country. Still, if you are traveling to Krakow with children, it is a good place to visit.
If you want to save your time and money book a ticket to the zoo with a pick up from your hotel.
You can do it here.
I have been to Krakow and man I loved that place. While I was staying there, I visited the Auschwitz Concentration Camp and I felt so terrible.
Yes, Auschwitz is one of the most terrifying places we have been to. I’ve been reading many books about this concentration camp and I truly can’t imagine how people were able to survive there. ‘The Tattooist of Auschwitz’ is probably the best of them all. It’s about LOVE that started in Auschwitz and ended up with marriage after WWII.
Agreed. Brought our son and his young wife to Auschwitz. I did not have family members there, my grandparents, aunts and uncles were sent to daily work camps. It is a powerful experience- and highly recommend it for anyone- To remember those who passed and to pray it doesn’t happen again. And here we are with the Ukraine defending their family soil.