Krakow, Poland – a ‘how to, what to and where to’ guide to Krakow!
Poland is not really the most popular city to visit for the weekend or anywhere I would normally think of, but it’s definitely one of the most underrated. As lucky as I am, I was able to travel to Krakow, Poland a few weeks back with work to accompany our TBP Talent Bloggers there for a quick weekend winter trip. In no means was this a ‘holiday’ but it was so much fun to experience a new culture and city I’ve never been to before, with its completely different way of life. Yes it was as expected, freezing. But what was unexpected, was the delicious food, beautiful original castles and historic buildings, as well as the absolutely gorgeous cobbled streets through the market square which were surrounded by pastel coloured buildings, mini cafes and cute shops. It sort of reminded me of the streets of Italy – which was something I definitely wasn’t expecting and it was a nice break from the hustle and bustle of London.
Above I’ve pictured the Market Square, which you can only get through by walking or by Horse & Carriage (something I don’t majorly approve on but in fairness the horses do look extremely healthy and well looked after) in their stunning coloured bridles. Poland in general is very cheap – but they do also have all chain shops like Zara, H&M, Sephora etc if you wanted to do a spot of shopping, as Polish fashion isn’t really my cup of tea…
How To Get There
We travelled to Krakow from Luton Airport with flights from Wizz Airline – I’d not actually heard of them before and never travelled with them, but the flight was so smooth and not that long either (around 2-3 hours.) I was so surprised to hear you can get to Krakow for as little as £22 each way, so if you’re thinking about a cheap, last minute city break then Wizz Airlines is ideal! It costs me £20 to get into London each day – how is it possible for only £2 extra I can get to Poland?! It’s mad! We also arrived back into Luton airport early on our return – now that is unheard of..
We were picked up from the airport by Trans Tours and Krakow Excursions who do cheap airport transfers all over Poland. They provided us with a slick black private Mercedes mini-bus with comfy leather seats so I could catch some ZZZ’s on the 1.5 hour journey to our hotel. They’ve also provided transport to a few celebs so we could feel a bit glam..
Where To Stay
There is no competition when it comes to where to stay in Krakow. The Grand Sheraton Hotel is SO beautiful. A 5* luxury hotel overlooking Wawel Castle with a huge, beautiful open reception area that has a window ceiling and huge plants and trees inside, so daylight spreads through yet it still has a warm and cosy feel. Everything was luxury, but the beds were something else. Literally like sleeping on clouds. So comfy that even the Grand Sheraton have their own branded bed that you can buy if you want to experience this every day – I WISH I had one of these beds! They were even kind enough to provide us with our own personalised travel pillows with our names on which was such a nice touch to make our stay even more special.
One of the things I loved about the Grand Sheraton was their attention to detail in their service and their effort in making our stay as relaxing and stress free as possible (which was ideal when it came to Sahar and I!) A bit nervous as it was my first work trip which I had organised, I wanted everything to go as smoothly as possible. The Grand Sheraton just made it all a bit easier for me. From access to the Club Lounge where we were provided with complimentary drinks and snacks, to the buffet breakfast with fresh pastries and a huge variety of breads and foods, and lastly to my favourite finishing touch – the personalised chocolate with our names on that were laid out in our rooms alongside Polish chocolates and vodka. Ultimate princess treatment and I would 100% return.
What To Do
Now when visiting a new city or country in general I think it’s so important to look into the culture and history and what you can visit that’s of a cultural nature, so obviously when visiting Poland the relation to the horrendous concentration camps that were in Poland was not to be ignored. We had the opportunity to visit Auschwitz, and although it was emotional and very overwhelming, I am so glad we went to pay our respects and not be ignorant to the mass murder that occurred not even that long ago (so sad to think this). The company Tell Me Travels took us there, and then onto a Segway tour around Krakow at night which was hilarious! If you didn’t catch @discerningman or @beautyrocksblog Instagram Live videos from that, you missed out – you can really pick up some speed on those things!
If you don’t fancy venturing to Auchwitz, there’s more than enough to do around the beautiful city streets; cafes, restaurants and little Polish shops selling hot donuts and hot chocolates! They also have fun markets which would be ideal around Christmas.
Where To Eat
The Grand Sheraton provided us with THE most amazing dinner on our first night. Canapes of bruschetta’s, topped with tomatoes, beef, cheeses – the options were endless and it was so hard not to fill up before dinner which of course if you know me well, you know I can eat – was a struggle. They treated us to endless amounts of steaks, prawns, salmon served with potato, salads and chips – literally everything you could possible want and all to the best quality. The final course was dessert and I was particularly taken by the cinnamon tart and the chocolate cake…
If you’re looking to venture into the town for something else, we visited Boccanera Italian restaurant, which was a delicious Italian a short distance from the hotel and slap bang in the centre of the city. Amazing quality food with a really cool vibe – modern decor and a DJ playing which made for a wicked atmosphere. The meal was so cheap, I would definitely recommend.
I will definitely be back to visit Krakow and make sure I get some more time to spend experiencing the city for all it’s worth.
Let me know if you go! Don’t forget to check out my Youtube Vlog on the trip!
Love, L x