Krakow.Poland.November.2013

It has been way too long since I’ve updated this blog.  And that means it’s been way too long since we’ve traveled.  But that’s not entirely true.  This year we’ve actually gone to the Big Island (Island of Hawaii) for the weekend and took a trip to San Francisco and L.A. for a family wedding.  But the year ends with this big trip to Poland.

Everyone has asked us – why Poland?  Especially during winter?!  The answer – why not?

After 38 hours of traveling (did you know that Poland and Hawaii are pretty much half way around the world from each other?!) – we finally reached Krakow, our first stop in Poland.

First thing first – my main reason to visit Poland – Auschwitz Concentration Camp.  There are so many options to get to Auschwitz, and we probably took the one option that is NOT recommended to tourists – take up an offer from a guy on the street.  We lucked out, though, we got a good price and he was extremely nice.

'work shall set you free'

‘work shall set you free’

great display

great display

 

all of their personal belongings were collected upon arrival

all of their personal belongings were collected upon arrival

these were a 'few' of the items that were recovered when the camp was liberated

these were a ‘few’ of the items that were recovered when the camp was liberated

auschwitz

Our driver, ‘Kaz’, also drove us to Auschwitz-Birkenau.  These places are huge, and they were expanding.  However, as the war was coming to an end, all plans were aborted and attention was turned to getting rid of evidence…

the entrance to birkenau

the entrance to birkenau

the crowded sleeping quarters

the crowded sleeping quarterstrain

The next day, we arranged for our driver ‘Kaz’ to take us to Wieliczka Salt Mine.  I guess it’s a “have-to-go’ place just because we’ve traveled so far.  In my opinion – impressive, but ‘eh.

the entrance

the entrance

probably the most impressive cathedral in the salt mine - not the best photo, though

probably the most impressive cathedral in the salt mine – not the best photo, though

a chandelier made out of... salt!

a chandelier made out of… salt!

And here are some photos from around town –

krakow old town square

krakow old town square

 

old town

old town

wawel castle, probably not the best side, but we were cold!

wawel castle, probably not the best side, but we were cold!

our last day in krakow was the first day of their christmas market

our last day in krakow was the first day of their christmas market

Krakow is a beautiful city, but with only three days to explore, we only explored the Old Town and Kazimierz.  There’s probably a lot more to explore.  And it was cold – what we didn’t realize was that it was only going to get colder for the rest of our trip!  We were still getting acclimated…

 

 

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