Krakow – Intriguing History/Legend/Myth
Krakow the second largest city of Poland is filled with intriguing history.It covers both the shores of the Wisla or Vistula River. Towards the base of the Carpathian Mountains there are over 1.4 million inhabitants in the city.
The southern city of Poland is in the vicinity of the Czech Republic and is famous for its well-maintained medieval core and Jewish quarter. Surrounded by Planty Park and the fragments of medieval walls of the city in its old town, it is positioned on the expansive Rynek Glowny – the market square.
This marketplace is considered to be the site of the Cloth Hall which is Renaissance-period trading outpost and St. Mary’s Basilica which is Gothic church of the 14th century. Krakow in several aspects is considered the most Polish among all the cities of nation. It is said to be the ancient seat of kings and intellectuals and filled with legend and myth.
Magnificent Cultural Capital/Ancient Seat of Royalty
Krakow has immense places of interest to be explored and Poland’s magnificent cultural capital as well as the ancient seat of royalty has enticed several tourists from all over the globe. The city of Krakow established before the end of the first millennium serves as the seat of the Piast Dynasty and as the capital till the early 17th century of the Polish Kingdom.
Though near, but far away from the endless charm of Krakow, one will come across two of the most cherished sites of Poland which are considered as UNESCO Heritage, though there are others which also enthrals the visitors. These have been visited by many tourists all through the year.
The Wieliczka Salt Mine is said to be around 10 km from Krakow and tends to slope 327m underground. We have the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum which is 40 km from Krakow that slopes into one of the darkest gaps of human history
Wieliczka Salt Mine
On examination of Wieliczka Salt Mine, it disclosed sophisticated ant-farm of passages, together with underground lakes and chambers that had been divided over nine levels.
From the 13th century, miners and explorers had dug and found massive cavities which connected and formed an underground city with expanded grey boulders for clouds and bible-black tunnels for roads.
A little less than one percent of the 300 km of the pithead is kept for exploration for the tourists though this small area has restaurants, chapels and halls which tend to hosts events like balls, music concerts, art exhibitions as well as soccer tournaments.
The three hours journey in the midst of spooky labyrinth of chambers and corridors gives a dizzy feeling while descending down from a wooden scaffold of 380 steps where one will find scrabbling of `I was here’, on different spots.
Explore – Beauty Beneath the Surface of Earth
As the tourist mount up and down the twisted staircases and along the unnoticeable ramps, they seem to lose track of the area covered below the normal habitation.
Below the ground is the Chapel of St. Kinga, where the intricate details of the altarpieces, chandeliers, frescoes together with the tiled floors in a 54m long, 12m high area of worship, are the most attractive since it had been precisely hand carved totally from salt for over 30 years of hard work.
The exploration ends with the dashing within caged lifts that transports the tourist up a 135 m shaft towards the surface of the earth providing the tourist with an amazing experience of witnessing the beauty of what had been explored beneath the earth.
Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum
This is a museum and a memorial in Oswiecim – Poland, comprising of the Nazi concentrations camps namely Auschwitz – I and Auschwitz – II Birkenau.
The memorial had been dedicated to the victims who had died at these camps during the World War II. This concentration camp area had been established by the Nazi regime and is said to be the largest of its kind.
It was located about 37 miles west of Krakow and was near the pre-war German-Polish border towards Upper Silesia. This was the area where the Nazi Germany had captured, attacked and conquered Poland in 1939. These camps had utilised the prisoners into forced labour and was also used for a prolonged period as a killing centre.
The Wawel Cathedral, Poland had been the coronation site of the monarchs of Poland and is the most important national sanctuary and also the most interesting site of that region with the Wawel royal Castle being the next site of interest.
Its prevailing 14th century walls comprise of amazing top-class pieces of art from the Gothic to Renaissance to Baroque to the Classicist to the contemporary.
Beside this,it has also been the burial ground of several of the royal personnel of Poland together with national heroes, two poet, four saints as well as the numerous bishops of Krakow.
This sightseeing site had been the focus of religious life of Krakow from the 11th century where Pope John Paul II had been ordained at this cathedral in 1946.
Krakow Cloth Hall
KrakowClothHall is one of the most recognizable icons of the city which dates back to the Renaissance and the focus of the main market square in Krakow Old Town.
Since 1978, it had been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site drawing several tourists from all over the world. Being the oldest European shopping centre, visitors can indulge in shopping at the craft stalls and have insights on the history way back to the 14th century of this region.
Presently it stills buzzes with visitors and traders with craft trinkets, souvenirs, novelty items which is the central point for all those visiting this interesting site.
Explore & Unravel Krakow
The language spoken here is Polish and the best time to visit this amazing destination is during spring and fall where the temperatures tends to be quite trivial and tourist crowd is quite less.
So plan your trip and bask in the beauty of Krakow as you explore and unravel the incredible beauty of nature in store for those keen in knowing Krakow.