Monday, May 14, 2018

Hippo x Kraków Poland Travel Blog

Coming back to my Eastern Europe vacation today.
I know I've been taking so long to finish blogging about my trip.
When my friends still see me updating my blog about the Eastern Europe trip, they were like "har, still updating?"
#yalor I still need sometimes to finish my travel posts in Eastern Europe.
But....this is gonna be the second last post, so I'm hoping you will continue to stay here with me!
Today, I'll be blogging about the fifth stop in our 2 week tour in Eastern Europe, and I fell in love instantly with the beautiful Kraków in Poland.
I never expected I would love Kraków so much.
Indeed, I never really thought of Poland as a place I wanted to visit.
Kraków is so much more beautiful than I thought it would be, and it's a city that I'd love to go back one day for a little bit longer.



We arrived at Kraków in late evening.
The weather is getting colder, nothing is more relaxing than a hot shower in the bath tub after sitting inside the bus for 6 hours plus from Budapest (oh btw, we had a stopped in between at Slovakia for lunch).
In Kraków, we stayed at Mercure Kraków Stare Miasto Old Town Hotel for 2 nights.
I really like this hotel because it is located in the city center whereby it is convenient to access to the must-see destinations and also there is a big shopping mall just right opposite the hotel.



On the first day morning, our tour guide said to us that due to the narrow and tiny roads inside the city center, it is inconvenient to drive the tour bus around, so we gonna do the city-sightseeing with the walking tour in Kraków.
Anyway, the weather was good outside, and I always prefer walking rather than taking the the tour bus because I think walking tour allows me to see more sites and takes more street photographs.









I guess my pictures probably already explained why I like Kraków so much on my first visit. :)
Well, one of the reason I've fallen in love with in Kraków is because of the streets and architecture of the Old Town.
The moment we started walking on the streets, it gave me a wonderful impression with the beautiful buildings and stunning architecture of the whole city.
So colourful and unique in different shapes. :)









The Main Square Kraków is one of the important attraction in Kraków because this is the center of the Old Town of Kraków city and also the largest medieval town squares in Europe back to the 13th century.
It has a huge open space where you can sit there to enjoy the great views of the surrounding buildings and atmosphere.
There are lots of bars and restaurants around the edge and we had our lunch and dinner at one of the local restaurants.
Also, there are a few gift and souvenier stores around the square where you can purchase the postcards and souvenirs.



One of the most important statues in Poland, Adam Mickiewicz Monument, the large likeness of the romantic poet and national hero.





St.Mary's Basilica, is a Brick Gothic church adjacent to the Main Market Square in Kraków, Poland.



My favourite corner at the Main Square Kraków.
It looks like a Christmas town for me, and I believe the place will look even more beautiful when it's covered in snow.
This is really the place you must visit in Kraków! :)



Church of Saints Peter and Paul, is the first building in Kraków designed entirely in the Baroque style, and also owns the biggest history churches of Kraków too.



Next to the Church of Saints Peter and Paul is the St. Andrew Church, the oldest building surviving in Kraków also one of the very few extant fortress churches in Europe.



We had a very good lunch at the Restaurant Wierzynek.
The restaurant consists of first and second floors and each floors are impressive with a distinct atmosphere.
It's really an unique restaurant, with amazing frescos and paintings on the restaurant's walls, and also an exceptional legendary interiors and furniture.





Everything were so perfect at the restaurant, from the starter till the dessert.
Just that the taste of the coffee was too bitter for me. :)







After the lunch, we continue the walk to another main attraction in Kraków, Wawel Castle.
The castle is situated on a hill so it took us sometimes to walk up to the castle.
But it's all worthwhile because we've got to see a good view of the surrounding areas of the city.





While walking to the Wawel Castle, we passed by the Dragon of Wawel Hill Sculpture which is a symbol of the city of Kraków.
It is a famous dragon in Polish folklore and it breathes fire every few minutes along the banks of the river leading towards the castle.





Loving every bit and piece at the hill up there!



Beautiful green leaf background.









Wawel Royal Castle, is a potent symbol of Poland.
During the 16th century, this castle was the royal residency, political and cultural heart of Poland, and now it becomes a museum that consists of a number of structures situated around the Italian-styled main courtyard.
The whole complex is truly amazing!



I think no visit to Kraków is complete without visiting the castle.
It's a must do in Kraków and I'm sure you will be fascinated by the entire place!





Besides the outstanding collections of the buildings and architectures in Kraków, the city also a famous city for the Jewish communities and histories.
After spending the whole afternoon at the Wawel Royal Castle, while walking back to the Main Square Kraków, we stopped by at the Kazimierz Street, which was the center of the Jewish life in Kraków.
The street is packed with historic sites, churches, and one of the highlight at this place is the Kazimierz Courtyard, where the famous movie, Schindler was filmed.
The movie is based on the incredible true story Czech-born factory owner Oskas Schindler who saved over 1,200 Jewish being sent to concentration camps during the World War II.
It's definitely a good visit to know a bit of the history of Jewish in the past.



Before we went back to the hotel, we had our dinner at the Restaurant Morskie Oko.
It's one of the best restaurant during the whole trip.
The restaurant has a lovely atmosphere, authentic surroundings, comfortable and cozy seating.
It's also the dining place where you can take nice pictures with your food. :)




The food were excellent too!
Super love the the spring beetroot soup with chard and potatoes, and also the main course of pork cutlet rolled with mushrooms, with side dishes of shredded vegetables and wedges. #yummy





It was a long but amazing first day at the Kraków city.
We have walked a total of 10.4km, and a total steps of 15,521 since morning till late night.
It's really tiring but we really enjoyed the experiences in Kraków, Poland.



On the second day in Poland, we visited the Wieliczka Salt Mine, located in the town of Wieliczka of Southern Poland.
It is one of the largest tourist attractions in Poland as it has registered on the UNESCO list and visited by over a million tourists every year.





It was an unique experience while walking inside the Salt Mine.
The place is dark and I felt like a hobbit inside the cave because of the narrow corridors and ladder intervals that we had to walk through.
Also, the salt mine is huge where we started the trip from a depth of 300 meters underground to the upper third level.









There are many amazing carved salt statues deep inside the mine.
All these beautiful sculptures were carved from salt rock as well as the chapels and cathedral inside the Salt Mine.





Are you dare enough?! You can lick the salt walls. :)



I enjoyed the Wieliczka Salt Mine very much!
The tour gave an opportunity to have a better understanding towards the workings of an old salt mine.
It was an incredible mining experience!



After the last attraction visit at Salt Mine, we wrapped up the trips in Kraków Poland, and then headed to the long awaited destination in Prague.
That's all about my visit in Kraków, and I hope you enjoy reading this blog post.
Lastly, don't forget to spend a bit of time to watch my Kraków Poland vlog!



See you again on my next post soon yea!
xoxo xoxo


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