Cities in POLAND
Krakow (Krakau) is the second largest and one of the oldest cities of Poland. The history of the city dates back to the 7th century. Krakow is located on the Wisla river in the region of Lesser Poland. Krakow has traditionally been one of the most important centers of Polish educational, cultural and artistic life and is one of the most important economic centers in Poland. Krakow's name is traditionally derived from Krakus, the legendary founder of Krakow and ruler of the Polish tribe of the Lechitians.
Photo: Jakub Halun Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International no changes made
According to the 2010 census, the city has a population of 726,265, and the entire metropolitan area has a population of 1,449,783. In 1978, the historic center of Krakow was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. That same year, Karol Wojtyla, Archbishop of Krakow was elected as the first Slavic Pope and the first non-Italian Pope in 455 years. His name became Pope John Paul II.
The coordinates of Krakow are: 50°3'41' North latitude and 19°56'18' East longitude. Krakow is located in a valley at the foot of the Carpathians in the southern part of Poland, 219 meters above sea level. Krakow is 100 km away from the Tatra Mountains. This mountain range extends to the south and forms the natural border with Slovakia and Czech Republic. The city is located 230 km west of the Ukraine border. The metropolitan area covers 327 square km. There are five nature reserves with an area of approximately 120 hectares in the western part of the city that are under legal protection. The area is rich in plants and wildlife and has unique features. The part of the city on the valley of the Vistula River is protected as an ecological area within the European ecological corridor. The city center is on the left (north) bank of the river.
Krakow has a moderate maritime climate. The average temperature in summer is between 18°C and 19.6°C. In winter the average temperature fluctuates between-2.1°C and the 0°C. Average annual temperature is 8.9°C. In summer the temperature can often exceed 25°C and sometimes even rises up to 30°C up. Due to the proximity of the Tatra Mountains, the föhn winds often blow and the temperature suddenly rises, even in winter.
Photo: Michal Osmenda Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic no changes made
Remains of a Stone Age settlement have been found at the site of Wawel Hill. Legend has it that Krakow was founded by the mythical ruler Krakus. The city was first mentioned in a document from 966.
Photo: Public Domain
The 15th and 16th centuries are known as Poland's Golden Age. Polish Renaissance art and architecture flourished. The old synagogues in Krakow's Jewish quarter were built. King Kazimierz IV encouraged various artists to come to Krakow.
Places of interest
Krakow is a must for tourists visiting Poland and has numerous world-class monuments, charming vistas, a lovely atmosphere and excellent restaurants. You will find amazing historical monuments, the entire old town is under UNESCO's World Heritage protection. There are beautiful old squares, buildings and churches that symbolize the culture and architecture of the country. You can take a beautiful walk through the old town create.
Photo: Jakub Halun Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported no changes made
On Wawel Hill (228 meters above sea level) is the Royal Castle, once the residence of the kings of Poland. There you will find the famous Wawel cathedral and other monuments. The Diocese of Krakow was founded in the year 1000, when the cathedral was built. The first pre-Romanesque brick buildings were built in the 11th century. A Gothic cathedral was built in 1364. During the Jagiello dynasty, Wawel was transformed into a renaissance palace. The royal chapel was added to the cathedral in the 16th century, an artistic masterpiece and a fine example of Polish Renaissance art. Wawel Hill is today an important national monument and an excellent witness to the history of Poland with several museums and monuments.
Photo: Ludek Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License no changes made
Barbakan is a Gothic building with seven turrets, built in the 15th century. In the past it was surrounded by a 24 meter wide moat and this fortress played an important role in the defense of Krakow. This monument is the best preserved building of its kind in Europe. Today, it hosts concerts and various exhibitions.
Photo: Pko Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License no changes made
There are 90 synagogues in Krakow, but only two are still used for Jewish worship. The buildings were built in different styles, there are synagogues in Gothic, Baroque and Modern styles. The Old Synagogue was built in the 15th century. Until 1939 this synagogue was the religious center of the Jewish population. It is a very important monument in Hebrew culture.
no changes made Photo: Jan Mehlich Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported
The Grote Markt is the largest square in Krakow and dates back to the 13th century. In the Middle Ages this was the largest city square in Europe. Today the market square is one of the three largest in Europe. Each side is 200 meters long. Some of Krakow's most interesting buildings are located on this square or in the surrounding area. Two tall towers are located in the square. The Sukiennice is a famous building located on the main square. Originally built in the 13th century and transformed over the centuries. Today it houses 19th century Polish paintings and sculptures and is part of the National Museum. The Slowacki Theater is one of the most beautiful Baroque theaters in Europe. The gate of St. Florian is a medieval watchtower. The gate was established in the 13th and 14th centuries and was part of the fortifications that protected the city from invaders. The Florian and Barbican gates are the only remains of the medieval defensive walls. The square also houses the town hall and the Basilica of the Virgin Mary.
Photo: Chepry Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Generic no changes made
The Wielicska salt mine is one of the oldest salt mines in the world. The extraction dates back to the 11th century. There is a tunnel system of about 300 kilometers and the mine is a World Heritage Site. It is a tourist attraction that has also attracted famous visitors in the past, such as Copernicus and Goethe.
Photo: xiquinhosilva Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic no changes made
While in Krakow you can also visit the extermination and concentration camps of Auschwitz-Berkenau. The horrors of the Second World War come to life here. This camp is the symbol of the Holocaust. Auschwitz is located about 60 kilometers from Krakow and is known for the gas chambers and the horrible medical experiments that were carried out during the Nazi regime.
Last updated December 2020
Copyright: Team Landenweb