If you’re looking for fun and interesting things to do when visiting Krakow in Poland, this post covers some of the best activities to enjoy there.
In addition to free attractions, this post also family-friendly ideas and evening events in Krakow.
1. Take a Free Walking Tour
Krakow is a city best discovered on foot. You’ll want to get up close to its sumptuous historic buildings and wander its smaller streets and big city squares.
Free guided walking tours of Krakow enhance your exploration of the city as your knowledgeable local guide takes you to the highlights while telling you about Krakow's rich history.
On the Old Town Tour, you’ll learn about Krakow’s history while seeing the city’s diverse and glorious architecture from its Gothic buildings to Renaissance palaces.
The Historic Jewish Quarter Tour takes you through the key sights of the Jewish community that has been home to Jewish families since the Middle Ages.
Other tours offered are WW2 and Communism Tours and Krakow Night Tours.
Learn more about these tours and the schedule here.
2. See a Concert at Tauron Arena
After exploring the city during the day, spend your evening at the Tauron Arena seeing top bands from around the world.
As an international city, Krakow attracts big-name acts like Depeche Mode and Sting, Björk, Judas Priest, and more.
Find out who is playing when you are in town here.
3. Take a Cruise Down the Vistula River
One relaxing way to see Krakow’s iconic sights is on a cruise down the Vistula River.
On this hour-long cruise, you’ll glide by some city landmarks and have fantastic views.
Head up to the open deck for panoramic views of Krakow’s historic buildings such as Wawel Castle and the Church on the Rock.
Pass under the Dębnicki Bridge and by Krakow’s districts such as Saltwator and Kazimierz.
Your skip-the-line-ticket line ticket allows you to board the cruise first. Choose from English or Polish audio guide commentary.
4. Go on a Tour of Schindler’s Factory
On this guided tour of Krakow’s most popular museum, you’ll learn about the heroic actions of Oskar Schindler, who sheltered approximately 1,100 Jews from the Nazis by employing them in his factories.
Many people know the story of Schindler from the movie “Schindler’s List”.
This 90-minute guided tour takes you through one of his factories to see several deeply moving exhibits over three floors.
Learn about life in Krakow before and after Nazi Occupation in WWII.
Hear heart-rending stories of life during the war and visit a replica of an apartment in the Krakow Ghetto.
Your ticket will allow you to skip the line. The guided tour is available in English, German, and French.
5. Take the Kids to Energylandia
Energylandia is the largest amusement park in Poland with 123 attractions that kids, tweens, teens, and adults will love!
The park has several themed areas geared towards different age groups and different levels of thrills.
The Extreme Zone is for daredevils who love an adrenaline rush, with the biggest and fastest, pendulum swings and tower drops.
In the Family Zone, there are several exciting roller-coasters as well as water rides, and a race track.
Fairytaleland is for the little ones, with safe mini-sized rides and a quiet space for adults to come with infants.
6. See a Traditional Polish Folk Show
A great way to spend an evening in Krakow getting to know Polish culture and tradition is to attend a lively folk music show accompanied by traditional cuisine.
Along with the music, there are dance performances from Krakow as well as the rest of Poland.
If you want, you'll be able to join in on the dancing!
Eat and drink as much as you like with a 3-course dinner and buffet, as well as unlimited drinks, including beer and wine.
The event takes place at a restaurant just outside of Krakow overlooking the beautiful Lake Kryspinów.
Your tour includes a round-trip bus ride through the picturesque parts of Krakow to the restaurant.
7. Bear Witness to History at Auschwitz Concentration Camp
Auschwitz-Birkenau just outside of Krakow was the largest Nazi concentration camp, where Jews and people from other persecuted groups were deported and ultimately killed.
Between 1940 and 1945 over 1.2 million people perished here and the camp is now a memorial to the victims and a museum to educate the public.
The best way to visit is on a guided tour that includes transportation.
On a 3.5-hour tour, your guide will share with you the history and horrors of Auschwitz.
Visit the original barracks, gas chambers, train arrival platforms, and other sites. Learn about the lives of those who died and view their belongings at the museum.
8. Go on a Pub Crawl
Let a fun, friendly guide take you on a 4-hour tour of some of Krakow's best bars and clubs in the Old Town.
You’ll walk along charming streets to one of the best bars in Krakow and dance the night away at two popular clubs.
This tour gets you VIP entry so you can walk straight in!
Also, your tour includes 1 hour of free unlimited vodka, rum, gin, whiskey, mixers, and beer as well as welcome shots at each venue
Your fun night will be captured by a professional photographer who accompanies the group, taking pictures along the way!
Get ready to post them on Instagram at the end of the tour!
9. Enjoy a Soak in the Thermal Baths
One of the best things to do at night near Krakow is to soak in the warm nutrient-rich Chocholow Thermal Baths.
The water in the 30+ swimming pools, baths, and jacuzzis ranges in temperature from 32 to 36 degrees Celsius (89.6 to 96.8 degrees Fahrenheit).
The indoor baths have 7 small jacuzzis and two large jacuzzi pools. But it’s not only about soaking!
There are pools of all sizes, both indoors and out, special children’s zones, sports pools, pools with activities like water volleyball, volcano geysers, water walls, artificial waves, inflatable slides, and more.
Take in a panoramic view of the Tatra Mountains which surround the complex. Watch the sunset from a terrace cooling pool.
If you like, dine at the on-site restaurant before the journey back to your hotel.
10. Visit Princes Czartoryski Museum
Visit one of Poland’s oldest museums and see some spectacular art with a live guide to share their insight with you.
The permanent collection consists of paintings by European masters, portraits of Polish nobility, and historic Polish documents and books.
But the museum’s most treasured piece, Leonardo da Vinci's oil painting 'Lady With an Ermine', is one of only four female portraits by the artist in the world.
Your guide will tell you the history of how this stunning work came to belong to Krakow's royals in 1800 and help you understand some of DaVinci’s techniques in painting this special masterpiece.
Explore the immersive permanent exhibitions like the 'Landscape with the Good Samaritan' painting by Rembrandt van Rijn and a huge collection of memorabilia showcasing Polish history.
11. Discover Wawel Castle
The stunning Wawel Castle is a must-see attraction when in Krakow.
Built in the 14th century, this royal residence was home to many of Poland’s most important kings.
A tour is the best way to see the castle as well as the Wawel Cathedral as a professional guide will take you back through history with stories about Poland’s royal past while showing you
The castle has been a museum since 1930 with an impressive collection of art and historic objects.
See paintings, sculptures, furniture, tapestries, and much more.
12. Go to a Chopin Piano Recital
There’s no better place to hear Chopin’s nocturnes, mazurkas, and polonaises than in his country of birth at the elegant Chopin Concert Hall.
You’ll hear local award-winning pianists perform the works of Poland’s most famous composer as you sip wine in an intimate setting in a 15th-century building.
Whether you are a Chopin fan or not, this recital in such an atmospheric space promises an unforgettable experience.
13. Take a Tour of the Rynek Underground Museum
Take a 2-hour tour with a live guide of this one-of-a-kind museum that allows you to experience life in Kraków’s Old Town as it was 700 years ago. and enter with a skip-the-line ticket
The museum is in fact a huge archaeological site of excavated medieval merchant stalls beneath Krakow’s main market square ('Rynek Główny').
Besides showcasing remarkable artifacts, the exhibits use touch screens and holograms to present the history of Kraków from its first settlers until today.
Because of the museum’s popularity and that only 300 people can enter at one time, it’s highly recommended that you buy tickets in advance.
14. Visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine
Over a million tourists visit this incredible former underground salt mine that’s nearly 700 years old and listed as a coveted UNESCO Cultural and Natural World Heritage site.
This mine is unlike any other in the world.
It’s an enormous complex maze of grand halls, passages, and chapels, adorned with exquisite carvings, statues, and chandeliers -- all made out of salt!
This enormous wonderland was created by thousands of miners over centuries. There are also large underground salt lakes.
The tour route is approximately 3.5 kilometers and takes visitors to the stunning sites of the mine.
Your guide will explain how miners excavated salt and what their lives were like.
15. Take the Kids to the Zoo
Going to a zoo brings out the kid in all of us, and the Krakow Zoo is a fantastic place to reconnect with nature and see some animals you might not see in other zoos.
With over 1,500 animals of 260 species, the zoo is spread out over 20 hectares (49 acres).
The zoo prides itself on having 32 animals on the verge of extinction and another 88 endangered.
See a rare herd of pygmy hippopotamus and endangered Przewalski horses (considered to be the last truly wild horse in the world).
There are so many amazing creatures to see here, a family visit here will be an unforgettable part of your trip to Krakow.
16. Go on a Food Tour
On this small group, 3-hour food tour, a local ‘foodie’ will lead you to great local eateries to try more than 10 traditional Polish dishes and snacks.
As you stroll through Old Town trying foods like perogies dumplings and obwarzanek bread (a specialty of Krakow), your friendly guide will tell you about the landmarks you pass.
In addition to snacks from street food kiosks, you’ll also have a full lunch with appetizers, soup, and a main course, followed by a special Polish dessert.
Plus you get to sample two Polish vodkas. After this tour, there will be no need to eat for many hours!
17. Get Your Game On at Krakow Arcade Museum
Welcome to the largest arcade game museum in Poland!
It’s more than a museum, it’s an arcade with over 140 arcade machines and over 20 pinball machines from every era - and you can play them all!
Sure it’s cool to learn the history of video games. The oldest machine in the museum is over 50 years old.
But face it, the real joy of a visit here is playing games from all eras.
Go back in time to the 1980s and ‘90s to the early days of video games.
Play classic games like Donkey Kong, Centipede, Frogger, Mario Bros, Pac-Man and so many more.
If you are traveling with kids, they will love this museum more than most. Show them the games you played as a child.
Your ticket includes unlimited free play on all games and is valid all day and you can leave and come back throughout that day if you like.
18. Experience the Polish Museum of Aviation
This fascinating museum is inside the old Kraków-Rakowice-Czyżyny Airport that dates back to 1912.
A visit here is perfect for aviation enthusiasts or anyone interested in history,
The museum has multiple exhibits with over 300 artifacts and aircraft.
See 200 aircraft including fighter jets, bombers, gliders, helicopters, MiGs, Yaks, and Sukhois.
There are also aircraft from the Soviet era, such as Antonov AN-26 and Polish PZL 130 Orlik.
Plus you’ll see the only remaining Russian flying boat, the Grigorovich M-15 from 1916.
19. Visit the Archaeological Museum of Krakow
The Archaeological Museum of Krakow opened in 1850, has a staggering collection of over 500,000 archaeological finds from the Paleolithic period up to the modern era.
The most famous attraction is an ancient statue of Światowid a pagan god with four faces from the 9th and 10th centuries.
Another incredible object is the “Bronocice pot”, a ceramic vase that is believed to be the oldest object (ca. 3500 BC) depicting what may be a wheeled vehicle.
Be sure to take advantage of the great views of Krakow from the museum’s garden.
20. See the Dragon’s Den
According to folklore, the fierce ‘Smok Wawelski’ dragon lived under the hill upon which the castle sits.
King Krakus put a bounty on the dragon’s head, but no knights succeeded in slaying the dragon. But a simple shoemaker could!
The den is a nearly 12 million-year-old cave that visitors descend via a spiral staircase, then exit onto Vistula Boulevard. The entire voyage takes about 5 minutes.
If you are traveling with children this is an activity made just for them!
The entrance is on Wawel Hill just behind the Bernardyńska Gate.
Tickets are under one euro and can be purchased from a machine outside the entrance, or the Wawel Visitor Centre.
Learn more about visiting the Dragon's Den.
21. Head to the Contemporary Art Museum of Krakow
Though the Contemporary Art Museum of Krakow (MOCAK) opened in 2010 and quickly established itself as one of the city’s most significant venues exhibiting contemporary art.
MOCAK boasts a growing permanent collection of artwork by both Polish and international artists including paintings, sculptures, photographs, and installation art.
The big draw, however, is its provocative unconventional rotating exhibits.
The museum building is a remarkable design as well, fitting for unique artworks.
See the MOCAK website for more information about what exhibits are on and for ticket prices.
22. Visit the historic St. Mary’s Church
Located in the Krakow Market Square, this Gothic basilica was built in the 14th century. It’s one of Krakow’s most recognizable structures.
Its beauty extends behind the exterior. The church’s interior dazzles the eye with its bright blues and sparkling golds.
There are spectacular stained glass windows dating from the late 14th century and a wooden altarpiece dating to the 15th century.
In addition to seeing the church, visitors can climb up 239 steps to the top of the tower for a spectacular view of Krakow.
St. Mary’s Church is located at Plac Mariacki 5. Rynek Główny. Admission is 15/8zł. Children under 8 are free. Tickets to the tower are separate.
Open hours are Mondays through Saturdays from 11:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Sundays and holidays from 2:00 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Check the website for more information on visiting.
23. Go For a Walk Around Planty Park
Planty Park is a lovely green space that encircles Krakow’s historic Old Town.
The park was created in the early 19th century in the place where the city’s medieval wall fortifications stood.
Known as the 'lungs of the city,' this large park is split into eight smaller gardens with statues, memorials, flower beds, and plenty of benches to sit on.
Stop for a while and take a break from your day of sightseeing,
With a 3.4 km loop that takes you past landmarks, Planty Park is a great place to go for a run!
24. Visit the Botanic Garden
If you desire more green than Planty Park, the Botanical Garden will satisfy you.
It was established in 1779 on the grounds of Jagiellonian University as one of Europe's first scientific institutions of this kind.
There are approximately 5,000 plant species and varieties from around the globe including 1,000 species of trees and shrubs and more than 2,000 plants in greenhouses.
The Garden has a few themed sections such as an area with plants of the Bible, an arboretum, a rock garden, an area with medicinal plants, and others.
Find out more about visiting Ogród Botaniczny.
25. Hike Up Kosciuszko Mound or Krakus Mound
Krakow’s Kościuszko Mound is a modern man-made memorial hill constructed in 1823 to honor Tadeusz Kościuszko, a Polish national hero.
The 112-foot-tall mound replicates Krakow’s existing prehistoric mounds, Krakus and Wanda.
Today, one can hike up the mound for sweeping views of Krakow. Inside the mound is a museum with exhibits on Kościuszko’s life.
For an authentic mound experience, travel to the Krakus Mound, a burial mound some believe is the 2,100-year-old burial place of the Celtic King Krakus of Polish legend.
Excavations have uncovered 8th and 10th century artifacts but no grave has yet to be found and the mound remains a mystery.
It can be reached by train or tram.