Now the report from our visit in southern Poland. We have been hiking in Tatra Mountains, then have spent lovely 5 days in Zakopane, and then we moved to Krakow. It was really nice change, to move from the wilderness to traditional, folky town and then to medieval city, where people love being Cracovian. It’s the capital of culture in Poland, where people still believe it’s a ,,normal” capital. Many students, restaurants, museums, events and pigeons. we also decided to see less cheerful but very important Auschwitz, where Concentration Camps were built during 2WW. Let’s begin!
Zakopane is a beautiful city in the heart of Tatra mountains. It’s called a “winter capital of Poland” and we found out why! We have been there to hike, as Tatra mountains offer many picturesque trails. However, we end up familiarizing amazing Polish folklore.
We have started our hiking adventure from rather small hill called Gubałówka. Although there was a funicular railway, we’ve decided to walk. It was only 1 hour and the vies were amazing. From the top we saw our another destination – Giewot. It’s a peak that we reached the next day. It was much more tiring but totally worth to see.
As I mentioned we also discovered, by coincidence, amazing Polish folklore in Zakopane. Regional cuisine in extremely climitic restaurants, ,,oscypki” ( sheep cheese) and folk music everywhere. Main street in Zakopane is called Krupówki and one can buy a lot of local, hand-made stuff and well as regional snacks.
Then we moved to Krakow, the royal city. It’s been a headquarter of polish kings residing in Wawel Castle. I was in this amazing building, saw all the possible chambers, catacombs, Cathedral, gardens, exhibition, Lady with Ermine and the dragon himself… And the view on the Wistula River, so romantic. I guess it’s perfect city for couples.
There are so many things to see! The plan was to see Kazimierz District, Nowa Huta District, the city center of course and book a trip to Auschwitz Concentration Camps. And we did all those things during 5 days only. It was really busy time but definitely it was worth it.
One day we spent in Melex– an electric car, which showed us around the city. We have been in Jewish synagogues and cementaries, Kazimierz has been a Jewish city once. There is still old city center, small square and Town Hall. Kazimierz District, now part of Krakow is a place with a vibrant nightlife. Don’t miss the opportunity to sit in open air, enlighted with small lamps and candles cafes. Kazimierz is also an opportunity to try original Jewish cuisine, with the best ingrediens and secret receptures. We were also tracing XXth century history and Kazimierz was perfect place to begin.
Because Melex driver showed us around and told about places in the neighborhood ( for 3 hours!) we headed to a recommended place-Schindler’s Factory. It was really interesting, modern museum, adjusted to XXI century people and their demands. I was really moved to see how the life in occupied Krakow looked like. It was also great entry to our main goal- Auschwitz Concentration Camps. We were interested in the subject, especially that my ( Ambre’s) grandfather was Polish and he run away before the 2WW ( fortuntely for him!). About our Auschwitz tour you can read in the next post.