Kraków

Overview

From Andrew Harper

Until 1596, when the court was relocated to Warsaw, Kraków was the capital of Poland. Situated on the Vistula River, the city has traditionally been one of the leading centers of Polish cultural life. The Old Town (Stare Miasto) was laid out at the end of the 13th century. It features a Main Market Square (Rynek Główny), which is the largest medieval town square in Europe. Many of the city’s landmarks stand nearby, including St. Mary’s Basilica. At the center of the square is the Renaissance Sukiennice (Cloth Hall), which incorporates the National Gallery of Art. Many visitors find their way to the famous Wierzynek restaurant, which serves classic Polish cuisine. And the artists’ café Jama Michalika has literary associations extending back more than a century. Kraków also has one of the great small museums in Europe. Housed in the stately Czartoryski Palace, the museum of the same name includes ancient Greek and Roman art and dozens of Old Master canvases. Leonardo da Vinci’s stunning “Lady with an Ermine” alone is worth the price of admission.

Hotels

All recommended hotels in Kraków

Krakow, Poland
Hotel Copernicus
Hotel Copernicus

Charming 29-room boutique hotel housed in a Gothic residence that fronts a picturesque old street near the Royal Castle.