Are you in Krakow for only one day and want to make the most of it? Luckily most things in Krakow are within walking distance of each other.
There are two exceptions (and both are very popular tourist attractions) – Auschwitz (takes approx 3-5hrs) and the Salt Mines (takes approx 3-4hrs). If you arrive early in the morning you could see a few bits in the main city center (see below) and arrange for a tour guide to take you to either Auschwitz or the Salt Mines. But you won’t be able to do both in one day AND see the main sights in the town. You would have to pick two of the three!
But, for now this page will concentrate just on things in the city center – the Old Town and Kazimierz.
- Be sure to check out the main market square. It is the largest in Europe of its kind. See details here. In that area you can check out some Polish beer, see the St. Mary’s Basilica (the huge church on one of the corners of the square), and maybe spend half an hour walking down random back streets (around the Florian Gate area it is good to do this)
- The other big sight to see is the Wawel Castle (10-15 minute walk from the market square)
- As well as the Old Town there is an area called Kazimierz (10 minutes from the Castle). If you get a taxi ask the driver to take you to “Plac Nowy” (pronounced “Platz Nov-ey”). It will take only a couple of minutes and cost 10-15zl. But if you have Google Maps on your phone you can always walk there.
- Once at Plac Nowy in Kazimierz you will see lots of bars. Check out one called Pijalnia. It is a communism themed bar with cheap alcohol, and has communism era memorabilia (mostly newspapers) on the walls. You should also check out a Zapiekanka from the middle of the Plac Nowy square. They are somewhat famous there, and are a Polish fast food favourite. They are like a Pizza on a large baguette (and cost around 9zl)
- There is also the Schindler’s Factory Museum nearby (you should get a taxi though from Plac Nowy). It may take you from one to two hours to see everything in there but it is a good eye opener to what life was like for Poland (and Krakow in particular) in WWII