Krakow is a city in Poland, one of the oldest and the second largest, and is over 750 years old, which means there is history and its evidence everywhere to see. And although Warsaw is the capital of Poland now, for 500 years Krakow claimed the title of being the Royal Capital city. Because the history of the city spans for so many years, there is evidence of the Gothic and Renaissance eras everywhere, especially in the architecture you will see throughout the city. In the churches, the universities, and many of the buildings in between, there is definitely the reminder that this city has been through a very long history.
When planning your trip to Krakow you will want to make sure that see as much of this “oldness” in the city as you can possibly see. The history of the city is what Krakow is all about, it is what gives the local people their pride and what makes other people want to come visit the city. If you are going to take a historic journey through Krakow, then there are a couple of stops you want to make specifically.
If you really want to get a taste for Krakow history then what better place to start than the oldest university in the city? Collegium Maius is full of historic treats inside, including scientific artifacts collected by the school over the years. Tours of the university are given, and the best part, they are free.
A trip to Shindler’s Factory is an experience that anyone wanting to better understand Poland, and World War II, should make. The factory, specifically Shindler himself, employed a huge number of Jewish prisoners, and was later responsible for saving many of their lives. You can learn all about Shindler and more of World War II history by visiting this very famous factory.
The Defensive Walls
A trip back in Krakow history would not be complete without getting a look at the remainder of the defensive wall that used to surround a certain portion of the city. The defensive walls are connected to the Florian Gate, a gate that leads into Old Town and dates back to approximately 1300. The wall was not constructed until almost 1500, but both the wall and the gate are something to see if you love history.
Finally, if you want a little bit of fun on your historic journey, and the opportunity to take a little piece of Krakow history home with you, then you may want to take a trip the Antiquarium. Although the site itself is not old, inside you will find a little bit of everything, a lot of it telling a little bit of Krakow history. From silverware, to wooden furniture, to cuckoo clocks and more, you are sure to find something here to take home.
Many of the cities in Poland have a long, rich, turbulent history but Krakow, being one of the oldest, has a vast number of historical sites to see. A trip to Krakow must include some of these, because knowing Krakow is knowing its history.