Krakow, Poland. Aerial view of illuminated Wawel Royal Castle on sunset


Don’t judge us for telling you to ‘travel back in time’ on Krakow’s streets. This is a city where you can easily go back to its medieval roots for a weekend – and work forward from there. Feast on pork knuckles soaked in ale in a beer hall. Wander the cobbles into a sailing tavern – albeit far from shore. Or head underground to see where Krakow’s traders used to sell their wares. The fact the below ground attraction comes with futuristic holograms and laser shows might tempt even the most history-phobic among us to take a peek.

Away from the history? Well, it’s actually tricky to move away from it at all. In THE best way. The most futuristic building in Krakow is the contemporary art museum, but even they are digging back into the decades to curate Polish art’s history. Embrace this city’s past, even the worst of it. Take a stroll through the now romantic streets of the Kazimierz to see how the former Jewish quarter has regenerated from the horrors of WWII. Or head out of Krakow – just for a while – to see the artistic endeavours in the area’s salt mine. You’ll not look at a chandelier in the same way again. Stepping back in time needn’t be boring and fusty, and Krakow proves that time and again.

Rynek Underground krakow

Top 10 things to do in Krakow

The best things to do in Krakow make use of the city’s history, in some way. Whether you’re musing over whether Baroque was the way to go for Krakow castle’s northern wing makeover in 1595 – or deciding whether three courses of goose-based fayre is artery-safe, there’s a historic touch at every turn. Stray from the city to see the magic created by artistic salt miners or spend a contemplative day within the sombre walls of Auschwitz. Krakow’s history gets a little more contemporary here and there too. Krakow attractions include a sleek and stylish art museum and underground holograms for you to find…

christmas market at Rynek Glowny in krakow

The ultimate Christmas in Krakow

Krakow’s Christmas market is a light-twinkled spectacle at the centre of the city’s iconic market space. Yes, there’s wooden huts mulling anything they can get their hands on, but the general vibe feels a smidge less commercialised than other Euro-festive favourites. So what else can you expect? Ski slopes just a road trip away from the city and choirs, carols and concertos fill the churches and gig halls with music. Everything might feel a touch twee until you order a snack at a food stall. Portion sizes are huge and the souped-up nativity scenes, make this a Christmas that feels a little different.

neon lights at krakow pub

After dark: A guide to Krakow’s nightlife

It’s fair to say, your Krakow nightlife options are varied, quirky and – at times, a little niche. Of course, you could pop into the nearest beer hall, wine bar or nightclub and hope for the best. Or you could pick from our list of Krakow pubs and bars that show you a very different side to the city. Fling yourself into an adult ball pit, sing a sea shanty in an oak lined cellar, chat to a DJ through a van window or climb into a wardrobe and find out what’s on the other side. All part of a regular night out in Krakow. We have also given you an option to sip cocktails by the river but, if the snowboard ramp isn’t set up, how will you pass the time?

Isaak synagogue Kazimierz

Spotlight on: Krakow’s Jewish Quarter

If there’s one district that’ll lure you away from the cobbles of the Old Town, it’s Krakow’s Jewish quarter. The Kazimierz is gradually building itself back up after the horrors and tragedies that took place here in WWII. Regeneration has been helped along after the district’s appearance on the silver screen. But it’s the cosy bars, restaurants and rustic market stalls that keep visitors and locals coming back. Expect a warm welcome in this nook of Krakow nestling on the banks of the Vistula River.

fine dining in restaurant Gaska, krakow

Breakfast, lunch & dinner in Krakow

Send a warning to your waistline, Krakow restaurants rarely hold back on calories. Pretty standard stuff, but in this city, there’s a restaurant devoted to dipping almost everything in goose fat. Elsewhere pork chops are stuffed with butter, before being batter-coated and deep-fried. Carby dumplings are stuffed full of meats, cheeses – and occasionally a vegetable or two. Which is about the only hint of moderation you’ll find. There is a healthy beacon of light shining from one of our picks of the best restaurants in Krakow, but their central offering revolves around cakes and doughnuts. Krakow really does love to eat…