Since Krakow is the second largest city in Poland, there are numerous places to visit in Krakow. Although the city has been invaded, destroyed, and rebuilt numerous times, it still boasts of some of the remarkable architectural styles in the world, with Baroque and Renaissance churches beside the Art Nouveau and Gothic structures. From Schindler’s Factory to the Wawel Cathedral, every place in Krakow has a unique story to narrate to tourists.
Some of the best places to visit in Krakow Poland are Market Square, Barbican, The Jewish Quarter, and Auschwitz Concentration Camps. Visitors can admire the beauty of the Wawel Royal Castle, which has been well preserved since the 19th century. You can also sip cool Polish beers in the umbrella-shaded cafes at Market Square or see the urban developments of the city at the Historical Museum of Krakow.
If you are fond of churches, St. Mary’s Basilica and the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul are among the top 10 places to visit in Krakow. Steeped in history, the different places in Krakow are so remarkable that you can spend hours sightseeing at the marvelous architecture. Besides this, you should not forget to relish the best experiences at the music bars, cafes, souvenir shops, and hotels in Market Square with your friends.
There are innumerable places to visit in Krakow that offers a chance to witness some of the remarkable cultural and historical architecture of Poland. Each of these places boasts of its unique features, which attract thousands of tourists throughout the year. Some of the spectacular places that you must include in your Krakow trip itinerary are:
Market Square is one of the remarkable places to visit in Krakow as it is the focal point of the medieval Old Town of the city. Spread across an area of 40000 square feet, this area is an abundance of museums, cafes, music bars, historical landmarks, souvenir shops, hostels, and hotels. In Market Square, you will discover several spectacular middle-aged architectures of the city. The place is brimming with crowds during the summer season as they come to sip cool Polish beers in the umbrella-shaded cafes.
Location: Rynek Główny, 31-422 Kraków, Poland.
Perched upon Wawel Hill, Wawel Royal Castle is another beautiful construction around the world that is one of the best places to visit in Krakow Poland. It is an exemplary symbol of Poland that houses numerous points of interest, like Wawel Cathedral, Royal Palace, Dragon’s Den, and John Paul II Cathedral Museum. Through these highlights, you can explore the beautifully preserved exhibits that date back to the 19th century.
Location: Wawel 5, 31-001 Kraków, Poland.
Timings: 9.30 am to 7 pm, last entry at 6.40 pm
Among the top 10 places to visit in Krakow, Krakow Saltworks Museum is one of the giant mining museums in the entire world. This museum exhibits the centuries-old mining tradition at Wieliczka and Bochnia. The historical salt mine that was situated about 135 meters underground got its name listed on UNESCO’s first List of Cultural and Natural Heritage in the world. You can find a unique collection of 17th and 18th centuries horse-powered treadmills, specimens of Miocene animal and plant life, and ancient equipment for horizontal and inclined drift transport in the museum.
Location: Zamkowa 8, 32-020 Wieliczka, Poland.
Timings: 9 am to 5 pm (Tuesday to Sunday)
If you want to witness the showpiece of the medieval defenses of the city, Barbican is one of the astonishing places to visit in Krakow. This fortification is the only surviving structure of its time in Europe that represents the Gothic style prevalent at the end of the 15th century. There are seven turrets and 130 defensive slots in the Barbican that were commonly used by riflemen and archers of that time.
Location: Basztowa, 30-547 Kraków, Poland.
Timings: 10 am to 5 pm (Wednesday to Sunday)
Among the popular places to visit in Krakow, Kościuszko Mound is one of the four mounds that was constructed in honor of the Polish national hero, Tadeusz Kościuszko. Constructed from soils from different towns of the country, the mound displays a serpentine path to the top of the hill from where you can catch mesmerizing views of the city and the neighboring Tatra Mountains. Visitors are attracted to the exhibits of Kościuszko and the neo-Gothic Chapel of St. Bronislawa.
Location: al. Waszyngtona 1, 30-204 Kraków, Poland.
Timings: 9.30 am to 6 pm
St. Mary’s Basilica is another name in the list of top 10 places to visit in Krakow as it is a stunning church with two towers of distinct heights. People from different parts of the world visit this attraction to witness the exquisite interior and the striking carved wooden altarpiece. Tourists climb to the top of the tower to soak in the beautiful views of the surroundings. The stained glass windows in the chancel dating back to the late 14th century are spectacular that you cannot even take your eyes off.
Location: plac Mariacki 5, 31-042 Kraków, Poland.
Timings: 11.30 am to 6 pm (Monday to Saturday), 2 pm to 6 pm (Sunday)
Commonly known as Kazimierz, The Jewish Quarter is the center of attraction for people in Poland since the olden times. The Jewish Quarter is a thriving cultural hub that features historic synagogues, along with beautiful cocktail bars, vintage boutiques, art galleries, and bold street art. It is one of the best places to visit in Krakow Poland, where you can take a relaxing walk along the banks of the Vistula River. The Church of Corpus Christi is another magnificent place to view the striking architecture in The Jewish Quarter.
Location: 30-001 Kraków, Poland.
Situated in the heart of the Wawel Royal Castle, Wawel Cathedral is one of the great places to visit in Krakow if you want to learn about the religious history of the country and the crowning place of kings and queens. This cathedral is a unique example of medieval Polish cathedral architecture with the rich flair of Renaissance Europe.
Location: Wawel 3, 31-001 Kraków, Poland.
Timings: 9 am to 4.30 pm (Monday to Saturday), 12.30 pm to 4.30 pm (Sunday)
The Historical Museum of Krakow is spread across 14 different locations in the city, with Kryzysztofory Palace in Old Town’s central square being the most popular one. Formerly, one of these beautiful places to visit in Krakow displays the glorious 17th-century Baroque townhouse with its ornate stucco decor. After refurbishment, it was used as a permanent exhibition of the urban developments of the city. On your visit to the attraction, you will find the portraits of civic leaders and a renowned collection of conventional Krakovian Christmas cribs in the museum.
If visiting the churches in Krakow is on your bucket list, the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul is another one of the beautiful places to visit in Krakow. This church serves as the National Pantheon for Poles Distinguished in Science, Arts, and Culture, with the twelve apostles on the gates of the church being its stunning feature.
Location: Grodzka 52A, 31-044 Kraków, Poland.
Timings: 7 am to 6 pm (Monday to Saturday), 1.30 pm to 6 pm (Sunday)
If you are still looking for places to visit in Krakow, Auschwitz Concentration Camps is a significant historical landmark in Poland. Constructed during World War II, this extermination camp was the murder site of more than 1.3 million people who sought the genocide of Jewish people. On your visit to the camps, you can feel the darkest periods of human history through the post-war relics. You can walk through the gas chambers and barracks to understand the history of the camps in depth.
The last one on the list of top places to visit in Krakow is Wieliczka Salt Mine as it is a priceless monument of world material culture. Listed on UNESCO’s first World Heritage Site, this attraction illustrates the historic stages of the development of mining techniques that were prevalent in Europe between the 13th and 20th centuries. You will find hundreds of kilometers of galleries in the monument that displays underground chapels, works of art, and salt sculpted statues.
Location:Daniłowicza 10, 32-020 Wieliczka, Poland.
Timings: 8.30 am to 5.30 pm
What is special about Krakow?
Krakow is special as it is the leading center of academic, cultural, economic, and artistic life in Poland. It is an iconic city with its Wawel Royal Castle being listed as UNESCO’s first World Heritage Site in the world. Known as one of the beautiful cities, it attracts innumerable tourists to its best places to visit in Krakow Poland.
What is the best time to visit Krakow?
The best time to visit Krakow is between March and May and then from September to November. During this time, the place experiences spring and autumn seasons respectively, and the weather is pleasant to go sightseeing and explore the beautiful places in Krakow. You will not get much of a crowd in Krakow during this time which allows you to roam around its attractions at your own pace.
How to reach Krakow?
By Flight: The nearest airport to Krakow is John Paul II International Airport. You can take a flight from anywhere in the world to this airport to reach Krakow. Several airlines to Krakow, like EasyJet and Ryanair, serve budget tickets, so you can get plenty of deals and discounts on flight tickets. People traveling from America can get a flight to Krakow from Chicago, while visitors from the eastern part of the world can take a connecting flight from Dubai.
By Train: Kraków Główny is the fundamental center of Krakow city that receives trains from different Polish cities and the capital cities of the neighboring countries. You can also travel by train from Budapest, Berlin, Bratislava, Prague, Kyiv, and Vienna to Krakow. However, you need to change the train if you are traveling from Minsk or Vilnius.
By Coach: The Dworzec Autobusowy is the fundamental bus terminal located in the city center of Krakow. You can take any of the bus services, like FixBus and RegioJet, to travel to Krakow and the different places in the city.
By Car: If you are traveling by car, you are required to drive for about five hours from Berlin, Dresden, and several other German cities to Krakow. You should take the S7 road from Warsaw for four hours to reach Krakow
How many days are enough to explore Krakow?
Three days are enough to explore the different places to visit in Krakow. Within this time frame, you can take a tour of the Wawel Castle, witness some of the beautiful locations of the Old Town, and learn a history lesson in Kazimierz.
How far is Auschwitz from Krakow city center?
Auschwitz is situated about 70 kilometers away from the Krakow city center. It will take you about an hour and 15 minutes to travel from Krakow city center to Auschwitz in normal conditions.