"KRAKOW *** CRACOVIA" Krakow by LoriPori
Krakow Travel Guide: 4,456 reviews and 10,367 photos
Main Pic - Charming view of ul. Slawkoska Street
The second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland (dating back to the 7th century). KRAKOW is one of the leading centres of Polish academic, cultural and artistic life. It began as a Hamlet on Wawel Hill and was already a busy trading centre in 965.
The city is a major attraction for both local and international tourists, attracting seven million visitors a year. I can attest to that, as there were tons of people there at the time of our visit.
The main landmarks include the Main Market Square, St. Mary's Basilica (photo #3). the Sukiennice Cloth Hall, Wawel Castle, Wawel Cathedral, the Medieval St. Florian Gate (photo # 2) and the Barbican.
Krakow boasts 28 museums and public art galleries. Krakow is known as the City of Churches with dozens of Roman Catholic places of worship. Krakow was once an influential center of Jewish spiritual life before the outbreak of WWII. There were at least ninety synagogues active before the Nazi German invasion of Poland, but most synagogues of Krakow were ruined during WWII.
Points of interest outside the city includes Wielicska Salt Mine, Tatra Mountains and the former Nazi Concentration Camp at Auschwitz.
My Krakow Video is courtesy of Hans - Waalewiener - and it's called "VT KAOS IN KRAKOW". It's a seven minute video of our First Official Group Pic in front of the Barbican. It really is hilarious. I think Matt took about five pics -- "Take Five"
Second Video also courtesy of Hans - Waalewiener - is of our Saturday night dinner at Restauracja Bohema. We were treated to traditional Galician Live Folk Music and dancing.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Matt and Urszula and their many helpers, for an absolutely wonderful VT Euromeet 2010. Your outstanding organizing skills helped make this one of the best Meets ever. Lori and Hansi
Built at the end of XIII century to protect the northern entrance to the city of Krakow THE FLORIANSKA GATE or BRAMA FLORIANSKA is the main city gate. The roof, built in the barocque style, was constructed in 1660 by Jan Zaleski. An interesting part of the gate (inside the gate) is the altar to the Holy Mother of Piaski. On the first floor is the chapel constructed in 1885-86 by Wladyslaw Czartoryski.
The elevation shows the Polish Eagle, symbol of Poland's first rulers.
From Florianska Street, you can see the XV11 century Saint Florian Frieze. Both sides of the gate are flanked by the Medieval Walls.
Most days you will see artists and their paintings being shown just to the side of the Gate.
I thought it was a beautiful building and just couldn't help taking many pictures of it.
Dominating the Main Square, the BASILICA OF THE HOLY VIRGIN MARY or KOSCIOL MARIACKI, was constructed from 1287 - 1320 on the site of a former Romanesque Church which was destroyed by the Tartans. It was built originally in the Gothic Style, with Baroque Chapels and altars.
The two towers of the Church differ in height and style. The higher one is 88 m (the lower 69 m) and when built, did not belong to the Church but was under municipal management. It served as the city guard tower, where lookouts watched over the countryside. When a horn was blown from the tower, this was a signal to shut the gates against approaching enemies. This horn signal is called the Hejnal. Today it is heard every hour from the tower.
For our VT Meet, the Basilica of the Holy Virgin Mary was part of our Medieval Walking Tour. We entered from Mariacki Square at which point you buy your entrance tickets.
- Pros:Never seen so many Churches, nuns, priests, monks, brothers, sisters
- In a nutshell:Krakow is a definite - WOW!
The defined center of Krakow is the area enclosed by THE PLANTY, a narrow strip of green space stretching from the... more travel advice
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