A few things that you will find only in Krakow
I have visited several cities and I have lived in a few of them. There is no other city like Krakow – a fascinating interplay of energy, medieval legends and creativity. The ancient seat of Polish kings comes steeped in legend and evokes the most fanciful of images, from the Dragon under the catacombs of Wawel, to pigeon – knights to waiting for their king to return.
Krakow has postcard-perfect Old Town with Europe’s largest medieval market square and a fairy-tale castle overlooking the river.
Krakow has the hejnal – a short, melodious bugle call played every hour from the east, west, north and south sides of St.Mary Basilica’s left tower. Whenever I come back here and hear the hejnal I feel I’m coming home. Krakow has the Planty, strollway of greenery encircling the centre of the Old Town. No matter if it rains or is sunny on the Planty is always beautiful.
I love Krakow because of the Jagiellonian University, all sleepless nights before the exams and because Nicolaus Copernicus made doodles in the margins of his notebooks in the 1490s here.
Krakow is a paradise for bookworms like me. Krakow has a horse drawn carriages. They permanently etched into the landscape of the Old Town and became one of the biggest tourist attractions. Krakow has Leonardo da Vinci’s Lady with an Ermine, housed in the main branch of Kraków’s National Museum. Only five other cities in the world can boast a painting by da Vinci. Krakow has also kind of special simplicity and authenticity which I love.
Today in Krakow : Coffee and obwarzanek
Early morning. You are sitting on a balcony overlooking the medieval castle. The bell rings on the tower and… a small group of people in medieval costumes get out of a small Fiat car as if nothing ever happened. One gentlemen pulls the carts full of obwarzanki ( sort of bagels that you will buy only in Krakow). You run through the Planty Park to the lady who sells these these little freshly baked goodies and you have breakfast . She knows all about what is happening in Krakow . You have your obwarzanek, breakfast and a portion of Krakow gossips, as well as some personal stories from the life of a obwarzanek saleswoman.
After this you go for a walk to the Wolski Forest and see the elephant. The real one. Like in Africa but in Krakow. And you already know it’s going to be an incredible week. It’s normal. This is Krakow.