Wawel Royal Castle
5 Zamek Wawel, Krakow, Poland
12 422 51 55
Wawel Royal Castle Krakow Reviews
Lousy visiting experience, made worse by unfriendly staff and noisy tour participants.. Sep 07, 2012
Visited the Wawel Royal Castle this week on a short tour of Krakow, and apart from the great views from the top and over the Vistula and the beutiful Cathedral, the rest was rather disappointing.
It all started in the ticket office. I understand the attraction (if you can call it that) is trying to make a bit of money, but having 7-8 ticket types is just crazy, and a bit confusing.They have a very brief description of 2 or 3 sentances about each, but thats all there is to inform you as the ticket staff dont seem to be interested in telling you about them. When I asked the ticket salewoman if there was any description of the exhibits in English, she was quite abrupt,kept pointing to the ticket types list and the audio guide stand, not giving me a chance to ask any further questions;It definately wasnt a question of a language barrier as she understood and spoke perfect English, nor stress because of the queues as there was only an Italian couple waiting behind me and wasnt at all busy. I booked my tour for the Crown armery room and the Royal Apartments and left the ticket office.
as I was informed my tour would start at 12 (and being close to it) I made my way to the Crown Armery room, only to pointed the way inside by a misery guts museum attendant. after about 10-15 minutes of the sparse exhibiton, on the other side of the room there was a museum representitive giving a tour in English, and thinking thats the tour I should have been on, joined it. The woman took the group down to the basement, explained about the exhibits for about 5 minutes and lead everyone up the stairs to the exit! I was quite puzzled by this and when I asked back at the door if I had seen everything, the response was of a 'tough shit youve come out the exit so thats it'. This lead me understandably to be a bit pissed off, so coupled with the fact I had to wait 2,5 hours to visit the next room I headed to the ticket office to complain then headed back down the hill for a coffee, as the pathetic cafe staff either were too busy to serve me or I had 5 heads.
Hopes were dashed about enjoying the next part of the castle, the Royal Appartments, thanks to 3-4 Spanish girls who couldnt stop talking despite being asked to keep quiet by others on the tour. The rooms were quite bare, split into Gothic and Renaissance styles, and although one or two rooms being okay was overall quite disappointing,the grounds between the ticket building and the courtyard and of course the Cathedral was the only bit I enjoyed of the day.
My tip: Go to the Royal castle in Warsaw, it is far more impressive.
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Worth checking out inside cathedral Mar 10, 2011
Located on a hill on the castle grounds, Wawel Cathedral is worth checking out when in Krakow. From Old Town, you have to go up a ramp, to enter the premises.
Dating back to the Middle Ages, the cathedral has gone through some changes over the centuries. The exterior is very nice to look at, and worth the time to see. Inside, the main part of the church is free, where you can walk around and see the nave and chapels through the place. This was where Pope John Paul II was bishop at one point.
The parts that requires a ticket, is to see the Sigismund Bell and the royal tombs.
First, with the Sigismund Bell, you have to climb some tight, wooden stairs. Some people may have a hard time getting through, as doorways are very small. Once you get to the bell, you see how big it is, and can stand under it. And get an okay view of Old Town, although there is a fence that makes it hard to take good pictures. And probably the only view in the offseason.
Second, the royal tombs, where it’s basically who’s who in Polish history, is buried. They include war heroes, kings and queens.
There is a separate building, where you buy a ticket. And you get can a combo ticket of the cathedral itself, and the museum.
A nice place to check out, as it is steeped in Polish history. But the view of the town, can be a bit of a letdown.
Part of the Poland 2011 travel blog
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