The Old Market Square Krakow is where I am taking you this morning. Krakow is a fascinating and charismatic city that begs to be explored! In close proximity to the Wawel Castle close to the Jewish Quarter, is the Tournet Guest House we are staying. We checked-in and we are ready for our first sight-seeing tour taking along our raincoats and umbrellas since it is raining.
What a gem! So happy to have returned to this cultural and intellectual jewel, a bustling centre and its amazing Old Market Square!
It is around the Old Market Square Krakow that you will really appreciate the beauties of this impressive city. Dense traffic and trams, tourists and locals of every age. All streets seem to lead to the beautiful Old Market Square Krakow, while side alleys host street vendors and markets, street band players cast a sly wink at onlookers and amuse the passersby.
The heavy rain kept falling at first and we found shelter under a covered entrance of a building but then the sun was out and we had all the time to ourselves to enjoy all that the Old Market Square attractions have to offer.Tell you what! Let me take you along with us to explore the best attractions in Old Market Square Krakow. Come along…
Old Market Square Krakow
Old Market Square Krakow is a huge 10-acre plaza, the largest of all Europe’s medieval cities and one of the most visited sights in Krakow. In Polish, it is called the Rynek Główny and prides for its strikingly beautiful architecture and an abundance of Polish history.
The Church of St. Mary is widely known tourist attraction, a fascinating place, and you will be enchanted with the sound of the trumpet which is played every hour from the higher tower. The melody is played in four directions by a trumpeter. That tradition is called Heydar. The noon Heynal is broadcasted daily via the Polish radio.
Try to feel the atmosphere of the old when you get inside. The largest Gothic altarpiece in the world standing there since the 15th century. The ceremonial opening of the Altarpiece is held daily at 11:50.
Old Market Square Krakow
Another Old Market Square attraction, just west of St. Mary’s Basilica stands the statue of Adam Mickiewicz, a romantic poet of the 19th century best known for his national epic “Pan Tadeusz. The pot is a favourite meeting place for locals and tourists alike.
Another meeting point we come across is the small 11th-century church of St. Adalbert or St. Wojciech church as it is called in Polish. It has witnessed nearly 1,000 years of the city’s history and remains a living church up to these days. It houses a museum of the history of Krakow’s main square in what used to be the crypt. It is also one of the best places to listen to live classical music in Krakow. The cobble-stoned external promenade surrounded by rows of benches is widely used by locals and tourists alike who stop to eat a snack or take some pictures.
One of the most popular and most significant routes in Krakow…following Polish kings’ footsteps through the way of the coronation processions, the Royal Road leads directly to Wawel Castle. The big Gothic tower west of the Cloth Hall is the remains of what is left of the old town hall. Destroyed the 19th century, it used to be one of Poland’s oldest seats of government.
It is already getting late, actually, its time for a break but with all the lovely attractions around we keep moving on and on. Finally, we decide to leave the Cloth Hall for the end and we step in mostly out of curiosity and photos. The Cloth Hall is a huge marketplace with gifts clothes and souvenirs galore. Prices are average.
The Cloth Hall is also the place to get cheap tickets to get a great panoramic view of the square from the top. You could also visit the art gallery that is found on the upper floors but also enters the underground museum where you can walk underneath the glass pyramid.
Now, how about some ideas of what to buy! What do you think of a painted egg or a piece of amber, even a traditional folk-printed scarf would be a nice gift to take back home. How about leather house-slippers or wooden dinnerware –coming mostly from Zakopane.
In the Cloth Hall, you can also get cheap tickets to visit the top and get a great panoramic view of the square. Visit the art gallery and cafe on the upper floors as well, or enter the underground museum on the northeast side of the building where you can walk underneath that glass pyramid that we talked about earlier.
On the way out, we followed the Szewska, had lunch at a trendy restaurant, stopped for coffee and had a walk to the evergreen Planty Park before getting back to the hotel to rest until we are out again. This time, we are expected to get to the Olive Restaurant of the Sheraton Grand at 7:30 sharp for another tasting experience.
How did you like the virtual sightseeing tour with us?
Do you consider visiting Poland?