Krakow is the second largest city, and is rich with a long and complicated history, dating back to the Stone Age. The 10th century saw the construction of the Wawel Castle, and many other Roman churches. Following the Mongol invasion in 1241, much of the city was destroyed. German immigrants later moved into Krakow and founded some of the beginnings of what is the old town and market square.
During the 15th and 16th centuries, the city underwent a period of economic growth and artistic innovation. Renaissance art and architecture eventually came to Krakow, and the incredible Jewish Quarter Synagogue was built during this period as well. The Polish throne reigned until 1572, when it was passed on to King Henry III of France. The foreign rule caused the city to decline, and the Bubonic Plague and a Swedish invasion made things worse.
Napoleon captured Krakow in 1809, and the city became known as Poland’s cultural centre following the Austro-Prussian War. During this time Krakow evolved into a modern city with electric streetcars and running water. Austrian rule ended in Krakow following the First World War, and the city subsequently flourished. In 1939, Hitler invaded Krakow and turned it into an administrative centre for the devastating surrounding concentration camps.
After the war, Krakow was placed under Soviet control. The largest steel mill was created, and city became industrial. It became a world heritage site in 1978.
Get off the couch and get on the next flight to Krakow to spend in this legendary continental city that lies on the banks of the Wisla River that was once Poland’s capital.
Visit the Wawel Castle and other well-known architectural marvels, or soak in the history of the kings, artists, and other scientific geniuses that used to congregate here. Modern-day Krakow is a tourist wonderland for guests hoping to get a glimpse into a city on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
So do not hesitate to spend a nice weekend in Krakow – you will not regret it!
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