A Day in Krakow

A while ago, I wrote about my trip to Krakow. At the end of the day, I had a day to spend in the centre of Krakow, so this is a short post about my time there.

My first stop was Wavel Hill and Wavel Castle. Wavel hill is a citadel to the North of the city, on the banks of the Vistula river. Like many other European capitals (e.g.Prague, Tallinn) there is a castle complex atop this hill.

Wavel Hill

Legend has it that there was a dragon who lived in a cave on the slopes of the Wavel Hill, and terrorised the population. Prince Krakus slayed the dragon and went on to become the king and founder of Krakow.

Once at the top of the hill, there are many places to visit. You need to head to the ticket office to buy tickets. At busy times entry to certain parts of the complex are timed.

I first visited the Wavel Cathedral. The Cathedral dates back over 900 years. It has traditionally been the site of coronation for Polish monarchs. (No photos allowed inside unfortunately).

Wavel Cathedral

If you can, it is worth climb all the way to the top of the bell tower. It is said that if you make a wish whilst touching the bell with your right hand, your wish will come true.

Wavel Cathedral Bell

From atop the bell tower, you also get these magnificent views across the city.

View from the bell tower

The crown treasury and armoury is home to reside that belong to the Polish royal family and various weapons throughout history. (Again, no photos allowed inside unfortunately).

Royal Treasury and Armoury

It was the middle of winter when I visited, so a number of the attractions on the castle were closed. This included the The Royal State apartments, Royal Gardens and the Dragon’s lair.

State Apartments

In the afternoon, I explored the centre of Krakow. The centre piece in the town is the Cloth Hall. This is international trading centre dating back to the 15th Century.

Krakow town square and the cloth hall

Today, there are a number of souvenir shops lining the halls. The upper floor is home Sukiennice museum, housing the 19th-century Polish painting and sculpture.

Inside the cloth hall

The Krakow town square dates back to the 13th century, and is one of the largest medieval town squares in Europe.

Sadly, my time in Krakow was short, as I had to catch a flight back. I hope to go back someday and explore further. If you know of any great places to visit around the town, please leave a comment below and let me know.

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