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KRAKOW IN 2 DAYS

Crafting the perfect itinerary for your two-day journey through the enchanting city of Krakow involves endless possibilities, tailored to individual interests, budget, physical capacities, and personal preferences. Our selection provides key highlights, offering a snapshot of the city's rich tapestry, yet the beauty of Krakow lies in its flexibility. Feel free to modify, explore, and create your own unique adventure, visit Krakow at your own pace. The city awaits, ready to unveil its wonders and secrets to those eager to discover.

Image by Lucas Albuquerque - Krakow Rynek

DAY 1: KRAKOW OLD TOWN EXPLORATION

Starting your Krakow adventure from the Old Town serves as a strategic beginning, as numerous iconic attractions are nestled right in the heart of this historic district. While the Old Town is brimming with monuments and museums, it's essential to acknowledge that time constraints make it impossible to explore everything fully. A thoughtful selection and a well-crafted plan ensure that every moment of your first day in Krakow is filled with enriching experiences and memorable discoveries.

DAY 1 MORNING

1. Main Market Square Underground Museum (9:00 AM - 11:00 AM): After a hearty breakfast, put on your most comfortable shoes, grab your camera, and start your day exploring the fascinating history beneath the Main Market Square. You will need approx. 2 hours to complete the visit. You can book a guided tour in advance through Get Your Guide for an insightful experience.​

 

2. St Mary’s Basilica (11:00 AM - 12:00 AM): Visit the iconic St Mary’s Basilica, known for its stunning architecture and the hourly trumpet call. Kościół Mariacki, or St. Mary's Church, in Krakow, stands as a captivating Gothic masterpiece situated on the Main Square. You will admire the Altarpiece by Veit Stoss, also St. Mary's Altar, is a large Gothic altarpiece and a national treasure of Poland. The altarpiece was carved between 1477 and 1489 Celebrated for its two distinctive towers, it proudly hosts the renowned Hejnał Mariacki, a traditional bugle call played from the taller tower every hour. Ascending the narrow staircase of St. Mary's Church is a worthwhile experience, offering a breathtaking view of Krakow.  

3. Cloth Hall - Souvenirs Shopping & Lunch or Coffee Break (12:00 AM - 1:00 PM): Take some time to explore the Cloth Hall for souvenirs and enjoy a leisurely coffee with a view of the bustling Market Square. The Cloth Hall in Krakow dates back to the Renaissance and is one of the city's most recognisable icons. It serves as the central feature of the main market square in the Krakow Old Town, the historic centre of Krakow, which has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1978. Nowadays, within the Cloth Hall, you'll find stands offering souvenirs (bearing in mind that, being a tourist destination, the prices may be inflated). On the upper floor of the Cloth Hall, you will find the Sukiennice Museum division of the National Museum. It hosts the largest permanent exhibit of 19th-century Polish painting and sculpture. Additionally, there is a café with a view over the Main Market Square. The Sukiennice Restaurant is located on the ground floor (refer to our Polish Restaurants recommendations), along with the entrance to the Underground Museum (1st arcade, facing St. Mary's Basilica).

​DAY 1 AFTERNOON

1. Town Hall View Point (1:00 PM - 2:00 PM): Head to the Town Hall for a panoramic view of Krakow. Reaching a height of around 70 meters, the Town Hall Tower is located in the Main Market Square, right next to the Cloth Hall. Seeing the city from a different perspective will help you grasp the size of the city and the location of its main attractions. Viewing Krakow from a bird's-eye perspective will make it easier for you to navigate through its districts. You can select any other view point from our Top 5 View Points list.​

2. Church of Saint Wojciech (2:00 PM - 3:00 PM): The Church of St. Wojciech in Krakow, also known as St. Adalbert's Church, is one of the oldest stone churches in Poland, dating back to the 11th century. It's a small church located at the Main Market Square, its Romanesque architecture and historic significance make it a notable landmark. The Church of St. Wojciech in Krakow not only boasts centuries of history but also holds an intriguing architectural quirk - the ground level inside the church is actually lower than the surrounding area.

Krakow Rynek

3. Czartoryski Museum (3:00 PM - 5:00 PM): ​The Princes Czartoryski Museum, often abbreviated to the Czartoryski Museum, is a historic institution and one of the country's oldest museums. Its origins date back to 1796 when Princess Izabela Czartoryska established the initial collection in Puławy. It houses masterpieces such as Leonardo da Vinci's "Lady with an Ermine" portrait, supposedly painted by the Italian Renaissance artist between 1489 and 1491. To ensure entry, it's advisable to book your tickets in advance via the official website. Consider purchasing a Krakow Card before your arrival, offering access to 40 museums over 1, 2, or 3 days, allowing you to explore the city at your leisure. Guided tours can also be booked through Get Your Guide. For a curated selection of the city's top museums, we recommend reading our Top 5 Museums article. Keep in mind that two interesting monuments, St. Florian's Gate and Barbican, are located right around the corner (see the map below).

DAY 1 EVENING

Dinner in the Old Town: After a day filled with attractions and walking, it's time to relax and enjoy the evening. Since it's your first day in Krakow, you might be curious about exploring the local cuisine. The Old Town offers a diverse array of Polish restaurants. You may find our article on restaurant recommendations useful. It's worth considering an organised Guided Food Tour

 

As an alternative to a typical dinner in a restaurant, you may prefer to attend a Folk Show at Jama Michalika Cafe. The show offers an authentic encounter with local people and culture, including dinner composed of three traditional dishes as an integral part of the experience. For more details about the show, refer to our article on the Folk Show at Jama Michalika Cafe.

The array of nightlife attractions in Krakow will not disappoint anyone: options include Krakow Nightlife, Pub Crawls, and Night Cruises. If you have unlimited energy, you may continue exploring Krakow's nightlife, meeting people, and enjoying the party scene. However, bear in mind that another busy day awaits you tomorrow, so assess your strengths accurately.

Krakow, Poland

DAY 2: WAWEL CASTLE AND KAZIMIERZ

On the second day of your Krakow adventure, boredom is not on the agenda! Explore the historical wonders of Wawel Castle and immerse yourself in the cultural tapestry of Kazimierz - the Jewish Quarter. For those with limited time, a free walking tour led by an experienced local guide is highly recommended. This ensures a seamless journey through Krakow's intricate streets, preventing you from getting lost while treating you to captivating tales about the city's rich history and heritage.

MORNING

1. Wawel Royal Castle (9:00 AM - 11:00 AM): Stroll through Grodzka and Kanonicza streets to reach the historical courtyard and Cathedral of Wawel Royal Castle.​ The walk along Grodzka and Kanonicza streets towards Wawel Castle is already filled with attractions. Do not miss the Church of St. Andrew, situated on Grodzka Street, which is a historical Romanesque church constructed between 1079 and 1098. It is a rare surviving example of a European fortress church used for defensive purposes. Kanonicza Street is renowned as one of the oldest and most picturesque streets in the city. The street was originally home to the canons of Wawel Cathedral, hence its name "Kanonicza," meaning "Canon's Street." The street is lined with beautifully preserved medieval, Renaissance and Baroque townhouses, showcasing various architectural styles across the centuries. Many facades with decorative portals have survived to this day.

Entry to the Wawel courtyard is free of charge and offers an overview of one of the most historically and culturally significant sites in Poland, serving as the residence of the kings of Poland for centuries and symbolising Polish statehood. Make note of the Sigismund's Chapel which is a royal chapel constructed in the early 16th century by Italian architect Bartolomeo Berrecci. This Renaissance monument is renowned for its golden dome, which embellishes the chapel's structure. You can purchase tickets on the official website and explore the interiors of the castle or book a guided tour. There are numerous options available (The Wawel Cathedral, Royal Private Apartments, Crown Treasury etc.), and depending on your preferences, the tour may be either short or extended. For example, the duration of the tour suggested below is 2 hours and includes: a professional guide, entry ticket to one permanent exhibition (State Rooms, Royal Private Apartments, or Crown Treasury, subject to availability), and a ticket to the Wawel Cathedral.

2. Kazimierz Exploration (11:30 AM - 1:00 PM): Dive into the rich history of the Jewish Quarter. Consider a Guided or Free Walking Tour to uncover hidden gems and stories. Kazimierz is one of those places that should be explored with an experienced local guide. The area is brimming with anecdotes and stories that make it unique. It's not the most renovated district of Krakow, and visiting it allows you to immerse yourself in its historical atmosphere. Only a thorough exploration will enable you to truly understand what Kazimierz is all about.

Krakow

3. Lunch in Kazimierz (1:00 PM - 2:00 PM): After a busy morning, it's time to take a break. Enjoy a delightful lunch at one of the local eateries in Kazimierz and take things easy. Savour Polish specialties and have a coffee in one of the unique cafes of Kazimierz. Check out Alchemia, Singer, Mleczarnia, Eszewaria, or Hevre, which embody the bohemian vibe that makes Kazimierz unique.

AFTERNOON

Old Synagogue & Jewish Culture Museum (2:00 PM - 5:00 PM): Visit the Old Synagogue, housing a museum of Krakow's Jewish culture and history. Gain insights into the city's diverse heritage. The rich Jewish heritage is evident on every corner of Kazimierz. By visiting landmarks such as the Tempel or Old Synagogue, Remah Synagogue, and the Old Jewish Cemetery, you can gain insight into the turbulent history. As nobody will share more stories than an experienced city guide, this time we would recommend considering a guided Kazimierz and Jewish Ghetto Tour with Synagogues. Alternatively Explore Kazimierz on your own, take a leisurely walk through Kazimierz, exploring its charming streets, vibrant murals, and unique atmosphere. There is a nice hidden viewpoint located at the rooftop of the Rubinstein Hotel. The hotel is situated on Szeroka 12 Street and offers a perfect view of the neighbourhood and Wawel Castle.

EVENING

Once overlooked and even considered somewhat perilous, Kazimierz - the Jewish Quarter in Krakow - has undergone a remarkable transformation. Today, Kazimierz is known for its trendy bars, cosy cafes, food trucks, and enticing restaurants. The district exudes a unique and lively atmosphere. You can either choose one of the Polish restaurants recommended in our article about Polish Restaurants or, if you have already tried Polish food, opt for any of the international options available on each of the charming streets. 

Kazimierz is also renowned for offering Zapiekanka, a famous Polish fast food. Despite its simplicity, it makes for a great snack between pub crawls during a night out on the town. Plac Nowy, also known as New Square, along with Okraglak, the famous round building at its centre, is the place where you can follow the locals and savour the most delicious Zapiekanka.

To experience the atmosphere of the district, take a tour through the charming cafes of Kazimierz. Take a look at our article about Nightlife in Krakow, where we recommend places in Kazimierz with a typical but distinctive atmosphere: Alchemia, Singer, Mleczarnia, Eszewaria, or Hevre represent the bohemian vibe that makes Kazimierz special.

This two-day itinerary combines historical landmarks, cultural experiences, and local cuisine, offering a comprehensive taste of Krakow's rich and diverse offerings. Adjust the schedule based on your preferences and enjoy your journey!

KRAKOW CARD

We recommend considering the purchase of a Krakow Card before your arrival in Krakow. With a 1-, 2-, or 3-day card, you can easily access 40 museums and explore the city at your own pace. You have the option to choose between a City Card with or without public transportation. It's important to note that the Krakow City Pass - Museums and Transport (1, 2, or 3 days) allows you unlimited use of public transport, (including buses and trams), throughout the day and night. This ensures that with the Krakow Card, you can take a bus to Wieliczka or travel to the airport. Access all the necessary information here and determine whether any of the options suit your needs.

Krakow Card

LUGGAGE STORAGE

Exploring one of the most adorable cities in Europe with bags, suitcases, or a backpack on your shoulders can be fairly troublesome. Luggage storage is the safest solution you've been looking for. Whether you're exploring the legendary Wawel Castle or the charming streets of Krakow, luggage storage has got you covered. Find a luggage storage facility in Krakow and enjoy an exclusive 5% discount by booking through us using this link or by clicking on the photo below.

Image by Marissa Grootes
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