Other Areas to Stay in Krakow
Located to the south of the Royal Castle, from the 14th century until the Second World War, Kazimierz was Krakow’s Jewish centre. In recent times it has become a pocket-sized bohemian neighbourhood and an enticing alternative to staying in the old town. It is a major draw for tourists, thanks to its plethora of historic sights such as the Old Synagogue and Remuh, museums and art galleries as well as numerous eateries, boutiques and bars. A popular place to stay, Kazimierz offers dozens of hotel options, particularly around the main Jewish square, Plac Nowy, where you can also soak up the atmosphere in one of the many cafes and bars. In summer the streets are filled with music and revellers during the annual Jewish Culture Festival.
Just across the river, lies the tranquil, slightly off the beaten track Podgórze neighbourhood. Known for its tragic role during the Second World War as a Nazi occupied Jewish ghetto, one of the factories in the area was the former enamel factory run by Oscar Schindler, who saved the lives of around 1000 Jews. Its key sights include the Schindler’s Factory Museum and the Plac Bohaterów Getta (Heroes of the Ghetto Square) memorial. The area has since then emerged from the shadows of its past to become Krakow’s next up and coming neighbourhood with a now flourishing café and design scene.
Situated alongside the Wisla River, the largely residential Debniki neighbourhood is a short walk from Wawel Hill and Castle. Commanding superb views of the Old Town, it is a calm alternative to staying in the historic centre and Kazimierz. Tree-lined avenues boast 19th century residences, a sprinkling of museums and some charming bars and eateries. Also known for its wide open spaces, you can visit the Zakrzówek Nature Park, a stunning lagoon hidden in a quarry, where in summer you can even go swimming.
Formally a city in its own right, Kleparz is a 10-minute walk north from the old town’s main square and owing to its notorious food market, Stary Kleparz, is one of the most vibrant and colourful areas to stay in Krakow. The market is one of Krakow’s top attractions. It dates back to the 12th century and remains one of the most popular places for locals to shop even to this day. You can discover and try an assortment of local delicacies such as local cheeses and pies. On Sundays there is a flea market. Furthermore, the Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts and the St. Florian Church are both only a stone’s throw away.