Amber, dragons, Schindler's List and beautiful Krakow.

Krakow Travel Blog

 › entry 10 of 17 › view all entries
Old town walls.

     We headed into Krakow today and picked up a local guide. She explained that Krakow was not destroyed like Warsaw was in WW II. She said that the Nazi's had headquarters in Krakow including at the castle on Wawel Hill and that they liked the city and as a result they didn't destroy it as they did other cities.  We went to the old Jewish section of the city and there were between 7-10 synagogues in this area alone and some were still in use.  The guide pointed out where various scenes from the movie Schindler's List had been filmed. That was really cool because I had just seen Schindler's List the weekend prior to leaving for vacation.  While we were in this area of the city I found this really cool bar called Transylvania.

More old town walls.
I wanted to check it out but it was like 10:30am, lol. I have a bit of a fetish for all things vampire so that was really cool!!

     Next stop was Wawel Hill where the castle sits. The guide told us about the legend of Krakow and it's dragon, now I'm a collector of dragons as well, so this was also great. I'm thinking at this point, damn, vampires and dragons in the same city, lol. Anyway, the legend is that there was a dragon that was terrorizing the city and a shoemaker was able to kill the dragon by poisoning it so that it was thirsty and it drank and drank from the Vistula until it exploded. The shoemaker was then able to marry the Princess. This was the short version that the tour guide told us anyway. There's a cool statue of the dragon down by the river and "dragon bones"  on Wawel hill because legend has it that the dragon will return if the bones are removed.

A synagogue.
Now how freakin cool is that. I tell you Poland is a wonderful, amazing, beautiful country!!!

     After all the touring it was time to shop!!! The deals on amber in Krakow are great. I have honestly not seen so much amber in one place ever before. Kerry and I looked all around she bought some really cool jewelry, I bought my mom some amber earings for her birthday and myself like 3 different dragon sculptures made of clay. I swear sometimes I'm like a kid, but  I love dragons and collect them so why not, right?? After the shopping we headed to the Wieliczka Satl Mine. That was cool as shit. I don't have any pics of it because you had to pay to take pics and they had great postcards of it, but if you're ever in the area definitely go.

And another.
They cram you into this tiny little elevator and it like drops you down, it's a great experience. There were lakes under there, sculptures and my favorite the ballroom with chandeliers all made of salt. The floors looked like marble and the chandeliers looked like crystal it was a great place. 

     Tonight we went to a traditional Polish night with awesome food and music. We had a shot of vodka when we first got there followed by mushroom soup in a breadbowl that was out of this world and these great potatoes. The meat seemed good, but since it was unidentifiable I didn't eat it. I learned my lesson in Berlin :) Kerry got yanked out of her seat to learn some traditional Polish dances, and it was just  a fun, fun evening.

And another.
On the way back into the hotel we ran into Mick and Kerry from Australia that we usually hung out with. We got on the elevator with them and Alun and Leslie also from Australia and we we're in there talking and talking and finally Alun says my God this is the longest elevator ride to the 2nd floor ever and it was then that we realized no one had hit the button.  So of course we all busted out laughing because we were in that elevator for a good minute talking before anyone even noticed. One of the benefits of free beer and wine with dinner my friends, lol.  

theallens says:
Need advice, which city to visit between: Budapest, Krakow, Warsaw or Vienna. We're going to Prague, but want to stay 2 days in one of the above cities. Any suggestions?
Posted on: Aug 19, 2007
festerwretch says:
I don't know yet. I sent in forms to get it through the university, but haven't heard back yet.
Posted on: Aug 09, 2007
Aditu says:
Have you found a place to stay or does the University have housing available? I'm so excited for you!!
Posted on: Aug 08, 2007
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Old town walls.
Old town walls.
More old town walls.
More old town walls.
A synagogue.
A synagogue.
And another.
And another.
And another.
And another.
Yep
Yep
The Old Jewish section of the city.
The Old Jewish section of the city.
TRANSYLVANIA!!
TRANSYLVANIA!!
A monument to Jewish killed from K…
A monument to Jewish killed from …
Old Jewish Section.
Old Jewish Section.
Wawel Hill.
Wawel Hill.
Walking up to the castle.
Walking up to the castle.
Views from the castle.
Views from the castle.
The dragon statue.
The dragon statue.
Walking up to Wawel Hill.
Walking up to Wawel Hill.
On Wawel Hill.
On Wawel Hill.
The dragon bones.
The dragon bones.
Dragon Gargoyles.
Dragon Gargoyles.
A building by the castle used by t…
A building by the castle used by …
Heading into the courtyard.
Heading into the courtyard.
Inside the courtyard.
Inside the courtyard.
Old town.
Old town.
The home where Pope John Paul live…
The home where Pope John Paul liv…
Old town.
Old town.
Tame pigeons.
Tame pigeons.
Traditional Polish dance and music.
Traditional Polish dance and music.
Kerry learing traditional Polish d…
Kerry learing traditional Polish …
Gotta love vodka shots and unlimit…
Gotta love vodka shots and unlimi…
Krakow
photo by: EmyG