Krakow - Welcome to Polski
Krakow Travel Blog› entry 1 of 14 › view all entries
After being back home for two and half weeks we headed off to London for a night before coming to the lovely Krakow. Long story short, we got upgraded to business class Melbourne to LA. They showed us up the stairs on the way onto the plane, a champagne for the both of you? Why yes i think we shall. Fully reclining seats that massage, roast duck for entree, salmon for main and a cheese platter for desert. Can't go back to cattle class after this can we? Apparentlywe can LA to London, not good.
We arrived in Krakow about midday and headed off straight to the old town and 'Nathans Place' where we camped up for 3 nights. We headed off for a first afternoon of sight seeing to 'Wawel Hill' which is Krakows biggest gringo drawcard, the hill is crowned with a castle and cathederal, both very iconic symbols of Krakow we're assured.
Day two we were up early and off to the town of Oswiecim which is more famously known by its German name of Auschwitz. Arriving here was a little different than we were expecting, first passing a couple of coffee shops in the car park before arrivng to the Museum, the start of any visit here. The reality of Auschwitz hit us pretty quickly when we passed through the old entrance gates with the inscription 'Arbeit Macht Frei' - work makes you free.
We moved on from Auschwitz to Birkenau only 3km's away. We didn't previously realise this before visiting, however Birkenau was the real Nazi mass genocide concentration camp where it is estimated over 1.5m people were put to death. Birkenau is much bigger that Auschwitz with 300 barracks holding up to 100,000 people. Unfortunatly for us today the retreating Germans dynamited the gas chambers and crematorias which are now just four masses of rubble. Birkenau is a dfinite for anyone visiting Krakow.
Took it pretty easy on the third day, just went for a bike tour around the city. We got there and no one else turned up, so we had our own private bike tour with our guide John. The tour was great, we went through the Krakow old town and out to the old Jewish town. The tour was great and made even better by our guide John an American who even referred to himself as a 'seppo', what a ripper!
Didn't get a chance to have Goulash in Krakow before we left, big disappointment.
Fourth morning in Krakow, up early and off south towards the Tatra Mountains.