Krakow is without a doubt one of Poland’s most famous and most visited cities - and anyone lucky enough to take a trip there will soon see why. Kraków showcases Poland’s vast history and culture and is itself steeped in legend and myth. Packed with architectural splendour, UNESCO started its inaugural World Heritage List by adding Kraków’s postcard-perfect Old Town and Kazimierz districts wholesale in 1978.
Krakow has a broad range of accommodation available, ranging from low priced studios to luxury housing in the city centre. Opting for a serviced apartment not only gives you the opportunity to enjoy the relatively low cost of town centre accommodation, but also offer many of the benefits of a traditional hotel, such as secure access, cleaning services or even a concierge where available.
Krakow is a remarkably picturesque city and many first-time visitors will find they are more than happy to simply explore the streets and marvel at the stunning architecture, or enjoy the narrow alleyways and cobbled streets of Old Town.
The city offers something for travellers on any budget - from luxurious spa treatments to free walking tours. To explore Krakow is to discover Poland’s fascinating history and alluring culture. There are also some fantastic excursions available, to explore landmarks of World War Two.
However, Krakow isn’t all history, there are plenty of modern attractions to enjoy in an around the city. During the summer months the city parks hold numerous festivals and sporting events, whilst there are also several modern leisure complexes in the centre, offering cinema, sports and other cultural activities.
Starka restaurant, on Joseph street, is renowned for its traditional Polish menu and romantic atmosphere. Similarly, Amarylis Restauracja is popular with tourists looking for an authentic dining experience. Alternatively, Cyrano de Bergerac is a French restaurant offering fine dining in a beautiful setting.
Galeria Krakowska and Bonarka City Centre are the two major shopping centres in central Krakow, both offering a range of global brands as well as local retailers. Pasaż Rynek 13 is the place to go for more upmarket fashions and couture shopping. If you are in the market for souvenirs, then main market square has stalls throughout the week and sells everything from local crafts to food and wine.
Wieliczka Salt Mine is one of the most famous sites in Krakow - an underground mine system complete with its own chapel. Wawel Castle is a f14th century residence and fortified hilltop castle, with galleries showcasing its long and turbulent history. It’s also worth heading to Kazimierz, the Jewish quarter, which is now a hotbed of indie galleries and alternative fashion stores.
Krakow has an excellent public service network of buses and trams, covering much of the city and surrounding suburbs, as well as running through the night. However, many of the major attractions of the city are centrally located and easily accessed on foot. Anyone wishing to travel further afield has the option of the overground railway, or long distance coaches such as Lux express.
Krakow is one of Poland’s biggest manufacturing centers, with steel, tobacco and pharmaceuticals being the key industries. It is also home to the headquarters of 6 banks, 15 major institutions of higher education, and numerous of consultants and stockbrokers. Of course, tourism is also a major contributor to the local economy and many tour companies operate from the city centre.
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