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Culture

Top Rated Attractions in Krakow

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Ulica Kanonicza

This is probably the best way to approach Wawel Castle as Ulica Kanonicza is home to some of the most beautiful houses in Krakow, including the 600 year old house of Dlugosz which originally housed the Jagiellonian baths and was then purchased by Jan di Niedzisko, a survivor of the Grunwald campaign. One of his sons was the author of the twelve volume "History of Poland" and a later occupant of the house was the artist Stanislaw Wyspianski.

Theater Scena STU

STU is short for "student." The theater was founded in 1966 by a group of progressive young actors who needed a platform to express themselves, but who were unable to do so at Krakow's more traditional establishments. Consequently the theater has produced many cult plays, some of which have been turned into films and albums. The theater has remained open to input by innovative young artists and in return it gets an enthusiastic warm response from the audience.

Kraków Old Town

Kraków's medieval gem and historic nerve, the Stare Miasto or Old Town has long been celebrated as the keeper of the city's past. Its architectural heritage and historical tenor makes it one of the 14 sites in the country to be acknowledged by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Life in Old Town was, and continues to be centered around one of the largest medieval town squares in Europe, the iconic Rynek Główny. Streets are spectacularly lined with a fleet of traditional Polish residences known as kamienice, and a warren of remarkable landmarks cast their imposing shadows on the plazas; from likes of myriad Gothic and Romanesque churches, to the treasured Renaissance cloth hall notably known as Sukiennice. Every hour during the day, Old Town's corners reverberate with the distinct tune of the heynal, an anthem played from the Saint Mary's Church that offers a nostalgic glimpse into Polish heritage and history. Much of Kraków's Old Town thrives today with the same zeal and vibrancy that coursed through its veins in the past, its melange of architectural marvels, shops, monuments and cultural landmarks attesting to its great and storied history.

St. Florian's Gate

This 13th-century gate along with the Barbakan is among the remaining remnants of the city's fortification. This Gothic, rectangular gateway with a stone eagle perched atop is an iconic landmark in the neighborhood. It was the starting point of the famous Royal Route and also when triumphant royals entered the city after a victorious battle. St. Florian's Gate is now the beginning of the Old Town and a glorious reminder of Krakow's past.

Main Square

Rynek Główny, the Main Square of Krakow, is one of the largest medieval plazas in the whole of Europe. Surrounded by historic townhouses, the square centers around the 16th-century Cloth Hall, a majestic Renaissance structure topped with a traditional Polish Parapet and intriguing carved masks. The grand hall is flanked by the Town Hall Tower on one side, while the Adam Mickiewicz Monument and the 10th-century Church of St. Adalbert stand on the other. With origins that go back to the 13th Century, the Main Square of Krakow was once a bustling market. It is now the core of the city's cultural scene and the venue of choice for minor and major events. Museums, restaurants, and entertainment venues jostle for space alongside the historic square, making for a lively gathering place for locals and visitors alike.

Muzeum Uniwersytetu Jagiellońskiego Collegium Maius

The building of the Collegium Maius is not overly impressive, so it could be easily overlooked. However, once your through the low, arched doorway entrance, you will enter what feels like a secret world. The inner courtyard is a Gothic wonder. Built in the 1300s and still used by the university, there is a small museum to visit as well as a gift shop. Famous alumni here include Nicolas Copernicus. The museum showcases a remarkable collection of artifacts, manuscripts, scientific instruments, and artworks that reflect the rich history of the university and its intellectual heritage. It is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in the history of education and scholarly pursuits in Europe.

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