A guided sightseeing tour of the ancient capital of Poland, a royal city on the Vistula lying at the foot of Wawel – a limestone hill on whose peak rise a splendid royal palace and the cathedral church of St. Waclaw and bishop Stanislaus. You will start with the Royal Castle and Cathedral on the Wawel Hill which were remodeled according to the new Renaissance taste in the beginning of the 16th century. It is the place where Polish kings were crowned and buried here. Afterwards, drive to the Old Town with the Main Market Square with magnificent houses and palaces. In the middle of the square is the Cloth Hall built before 1349, but altered in 16th century with many shopping stalls inside.
Kazimierz – historical center of Cracow’s Jewish religious and social life, was incorporated into Cracow in the 18th century. The tour of this district takes you to the most important monuments in this area. First you see the sites, which Steven Spielberg used for his location shots of the Oscar winning “Schindler’s List”. Then you visit the Old Synagogue, now the Judaic Department of the Historical Museum of the City Cracow, the Remuh Synagogue and Remuh Cemetery – the most precious monuments of the Jewish culture in Cracow. Visit the Museum at the former Oscar Schindler’s Factory.
Wieliczka is famous for one of the oldest salt mines in Europe, which has been in operation for at least 700 years. The oldest part of the mine is opened to the public as a museum. Our route in the mine leads you through galleries, chambers and chapels on three levels. All altarpieces, figures and monuments there are carved is salt. The highlight is the richly ornamented Chapel of St. Kinga. The Wieliczka Salt Mine was placed in 1978 on the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage list.
Auschwitz considered as the biggest Nazi’s concentration camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau was established on 14th June 1940 and liberated in January 1945. About 1.5 million people of 28 nationalities lost their lives here, mostly Jews. Prisoners were unloaded onto the specially designed ramps, poisone with Zyclon B or exhaust fumes and burned in piles or crematories. Fellow prisoners were forced to service the gas chambers and assist the cremation of the bodies and their robbing. During the camp evacuation in January 1945 thousand of inmates died in so-called death march. When the camp was liberated there were about 7 000 prisoners, all in terrible conditions. After the retreating only part of the camp was destroyed by Germans. What has remained became the symbol of homicide. Today the site is the museum and is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Czestochowa – Jasna Gora Monastery is the most important place of religious worship in the Christian world with tradition of pilgrimages that goes back to the 14th century. In recent years this places was visited by 4-5 millions of pilgrims annually including 100 thousand from abroad. All these people are travelling Poland just to see and pray in the front of the Holly Black Madonna Picture. During your visit to Jasna Gora Sanctuary see the miraculous Black Madonna Picture, The Treasury Room with impressive collection of many precious gifts given to the monastery throughout the ages. You will also see a unique Way of Cross painted by one of the leading Polish artists –Jerzy Duda-Gracz – who included on each painting the most important moments in the history of Poland as well as the most prominent Polish personalities that influenced not only on the history of Poland, but also Europe or the whole world.
Enjoy a full day excursion to Zakopane, a capital of winter sports, beautifully sited at the foot of the Tatra Mountains in the valley between Gubałówka and Giewont. Tour of Zakopane starts at the top of Mt. Gubałówka, which we climb with a funicular, to see the most beautiful view of the Tatra Mountains. After a short walk on the top of the mountain we go down back to visit the oldest part of Zakopane. The houses and churches form the typical local wooden architecture in so-called Zakopane style, were created by Witkacy, the remarkable Polish artist. Apart from the interesting architecture, magnificent colorful folk costumes and jewelry have also survived. To see it and to feel a local atmosphere we take a walk along Krupówki, the central mall lined with restaurants, cafes, boutiques and souvenir shops. Our last stop in Zakopane is the visit Chochołów, a lovely old genuine wooden village.
Łagiewniki district of Cracow is famous thanks to Blessed Faustyna, who lies in the church of St. Joseph built in the 19th century. Faustyna promulgated the worship of God’s Charity and painting “Jesus, I Trust You”. This likeness is also placed in the church. Sister Faustyna was blessed in Łagiewniki. The church became a destination place for numerous pilgrimages who come to pray in front of the miraculous likeness and Blessed Faustyna’s tomb. Drive to Kalwaria Zebrzydowska is also a destination famous for the Way of the Cross which 42 chapels illustrating the Christ’s passion. Among other historic sights noteworthy are: the church and the monastery of Friars Observants, dating back to the 17th century, as well as their rich furnishing. End the tour with visit to Wadowice – a town where the Pope John Paul II was born. You will visit His family house and parish church dating back to the 15th century.