You probably already know about all the amazing things to see in Krakow like the Old Town, Wawel Castle, the old Jewish Quarter of Kazimierz and on and on. You’ve visited many of the famous museums and now you’re looking for a new angle on a familiar place. We’ve put together a few ways to take a fresh approach to a place that you might already know and love. Let’s get started!
Museums? Yes, please!Let’s start out with a few suggestions on some of the incredible museum collections and displays that even experienced visitors to Krakow might not even know about. Krakow has an amazing number of museum displays dedicated to just about everything you can think of. There truly is something for everyone and a good place to start looking is the Archaeological Museum, which offers an exhibit consisting of relics found during an excavation in Egypt as well as fascinating displays chronicling the prehistory of the area around Krakow. Both exhibits have a lot to teach us about their respective areas and are especially popular among children of school age. Devotees of technology and communication will be thrilled to check out the Museum of Municipal Engineering and the Polish Aviation Museum. In the first one, you’ll find a beautifully restored historic tram with a fascinating interactive display presenting various mechanisms associated with public transport and municipal engineering solutions. At the Aviation Museum, you can get up close and person with lots of real airplanes, helicopters and other aircraft from various eras. Many of machines are one of a kind! The Natural History Museum on Sebastiana street is well worth a visit too. Go back in time all the way to the paleolithic era, enter the world of mammoth hunters and look at fossilised animals from thousands of years ago!
Many visitors to Krakow make stops at the Underground Museum and the Schindler Factory, both managed by the Historical Museum, part of their Krakow sightseeing schedules. But there are lots of other museums overseen by the same organisation that have much to offer anyone willing to get off the beaten path. Do you want to see what an ordinary home in Krakow looked like at different times in history? Then you need to get to the Bourgeois House just behind St. Mary’s Church in the main square. Or maybe you’d like to hear the amazing story of Joseph Pankeiwicz and his pharmacy that he ran inside the Krakow Jewish ghetto during the war? If so, a very moving visit awaits you at the Pharmacy Under the Eagle in the Place of the Heroes of the Ghetto. The Krakow branch of the National Museum is another place where you can easily spend as much time as you like, wandering through one impressive exhibit after another. Go to the Menhoffer or Matejki homes to see a collection of paintings and peek inside the private lives of two giant figures of the arts in Poland.
No end of surprises for visitorsKrakow Guide offers many themed trails to follow and we would like to put the spotlight on two of them. For fans of street art, Krakow has many murals that are definitely worth a visit. The work of artists from all over the world is on display on walls around the city, turning many ignored courtyards and backstreets into canvases for artistic expression. The trail of these murals takes you well away from the tourist crowds into districts and neighbourhoods you otherwise almost certainly wouldn’t see. Learn more about it at http://guide-krakow.com/street-art/.
Another idea for something really unique is a tour of Krakow’s nouveau stained glass. Masterpieces by such prominent artists as Wyspiański and Mehoffer adorn the windows of Krakow's churches, houses and various public buildings. The unique beauty of the art of painting with light makes a powerful impression. The tour can finish up in the Stained Glass Museum, which also functions as an active workshop. Learn more about this tour at http://guide-krakow.com.
Even more to see and do…There is a long list of interesting things to see and do that are far away from the crowds of tourists in Krakow. Just to pick one theme out of many, Krakow is home to a number of monasteries that are partially open to the public. In addition to offering a peaceful break from the bustle of the city, they also have architectural and cultural treasures to share along with fascinating histories and colourful artistic works.
And did we mention Krakow has three hills with panoramic views over the city? Of course it does! Most visitors make their way to the Kosciuszki mound because it’s easier to find but we recommend making your way to the Krak Mound for a better view and a more mysterious history. While you’re there, look down at the Liban quarry, where a painful chapter from Krakow’s wartime history played out. You’ll also be able to see the 11th century Church of St. Benedict, with its own impressive view over the area.
Remember, this is just a small sampling of the many options available to visitors! How many can you fit in your Krakow sightseeing?
This is a contribution from one of our contributing writers.
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