How you can get round in Kraków (and why arriving by practice is finest)

A lot of what guests need to see in Kraków is discovered throughout the largely pedestrianized streets of its historic Outdated City. That makes this metropolis a spot finest explored on foot. 

However you’d be lacking out if you happen to didn’t bounce on Kraków’s well-known trams to eat and drink in a number of the extra fascinating neighborhoods, like Kazimierz and Podgórze. And in summer season, the water tram is a should.

In between strolls, right here’s the right way to get round in Kraków.

To get nearly in all places, go by tram

Kraków’s tram network covers nearly each inch of the town. With greater than 20 traces and round 400 stops, you may get to inside 5 minutes of each sight, bar and restaurant – a comfort particularly welcome in deep winter. The frequency of the stops and the actual fact the tracks share the street with vehicles within the congested middle imply the tram isn’t particularly quick. Nonetheless, the gradual pace and large home windows make for an atmospheric manner to absorb the town.

Trams on the busiest routes run each couple of minutes from round 5am to 11pm; after that, restricted providers run on a handful of night time tram routes. Info in English is sweet – however watch out for street development, which disrupts providers and causes frequent diversions. In the event you see the phrase objazd (diversion) on the timetable or tram, ask a pleasant Pole for assist.

Exploring Kraków’s fabled Outdated City is finest executed on foot – although be mindful all these cobblestones can get slippery in rain or snow © Krzysztof Dydynski / Lonely Planet

You in all probability received’t want the bus

Kraków’s trams cowl nearly in all places you could possibly need to go and are often quicker than the bus. Nonetheless, buses run extra steadily at night time and are handy for reaching some out-of-town locations, like Auschwitz.

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The place to purchase public transport tickets in Kraków 

Tickets for buses and trams are interchangeable and work on a timed foundation. You should use as many buses or trams as you want throughout the ticket’s validity. 

For many journeys, together with the Outdated City to Kazimierz, the most cost effective 20-minute ticket (4zł) will suffice. Purchase a 60-minute ticket for 6zł for journeys additional afield, together with to Podgórze, Bagry Lake and Nowa Huta. There are additionally good-value 24-, 48- and 72-hour transport passes.

You should buy tickets on the merchandising machines at many stops or inside buses and trams (some solely take money), in addition to at newsstands and kiosks. Be sure you stamp your ticket on board at one of many machines – if you happen to don’t, you may face a positive from plain-clothed inspectors. 

How you can get to Kraków from the airport

The practice is probably the most snug choice from Kraków airport, however unhelpfully runs solely each half-hour. Buses run in between practice departures, so relying on when your flight arrives it could be extra handy to hop on a coach. The practice takes 20 minutes to Kraków Głowny station, and whereas the bus takes longer (30–50 minutes) it could get you nearer to your resort.

How you can get to Auschwitz from Kraków

There are trains each hour from Kraków to Auschwitz (Oświęcim in Polish), however it’s then a further 2km stroll or shuttle trip to achieve the camp. Buses from Kraków’s principal bus station are quicker (90 minutes) and drop you off proper on the camp’s entrance. 

Many excursions to Auschwitz embrace transport – these are closely marketed in Kraków, however costly. The museum is nicely arrange for unbiased visits, with English-language data all through. You can even pay to affix a guided tour when you attain the positioning.

A panoramic view of boats in the Vistula River by Wawel Castle, Kraków, Poland
The common-or-garden river tram (backside proper) gives a gradual and completely pleasant method to see the sights of Kraków, together with Wawel Citadel © kosmos111 / Shutterstock

Why the river tram is my favourite method to journey in Kraków

Utterly impractical for seeing the principle sights, the gradual and never particularly frequent river tram continues to be Kraków’s most pleasant trip. Working from June to September, this boat service permits you to take a brief 30-minute trip alongside the Vistula River, providing fairly views of Wawel Citadel alongside the way in which. There are often half a dozen departures each day, with tickets simply 15zl.

Higher is the each day one-hour cruise upstream to the 1000-year-old Tyniec Monastery. This tour takes you alongside a wild stretch of the Vistula, via forested woodlands and by steep limestone cliffs. You’ll have an hour to fulfill the sociable monks and eat within the glorious restaurant earlier than your return journey. 

Frustratingly, you’ll be able to solely purchase tickets on board the boat – so arrive early, particularly for the Tyniec departure. Search for the Tramway Wodny indicators, and keep away from flashier rivals on the waterfront which have larger indicators and higher English however cost twice the worth. 

Journey to Kraków from Warsaw, Prague and Budapest 

There are frequent onward practice connections to surrounding capitals from Kraków on fashionable Intercity trains with low-cost advance tickets. The night time trains to Budapest and Prague are a superb method to scale back your carbon footprint. 

Ticket machines in Kraków Głowny have English-language data, as does the Polish rail website.

Blue EP07 locomotive pulls the carriages of the intercity passenger train to Warsaw through the autumn forest, Poland
Trains depart hourly to make the 3-hour journey between Kraków and Warsaw © Zahnoi Alex / Shutterstock

How you can get from Warsaw to Kraków

There are hourly trains between Warsaw and Kraków, with the journey taking beneath three hours. You may select between dearer (and quicker) Categorical Intercity trains, or cheaper however slower Intercity and regional Tanie Linie Kolejowe. 

How you can get from Prague to Kraków

There are each day trains or an in a single day sleeper between Prague and Kraków (7–9 hours). The practice has snug carriages, typically with wi-fi and energy sockets. By day, the restaurant automotive serves draft Pilsner. 

How you can get from Budapest to Kraków

The each day in a single day sleeper between Budapest and Kraków (9 hours) is a cheap choice – to not point out a sociable method to meet fellow vacationers. The fashionable and cozy trains are barely quicker by day. 

Accessible transportation in Kraków

Kraków’s Outdated City is charmingly cobbled, and people stones do get slippery when it rains or snows. 

Most trams and buses on in style routes have newly made vehicles that provide low-level entry for wheelchairs utilizing an automatic ramp via large, well-signposted doorways. In some locations, trams cease on the street, which means you could board by coming off the curb (there may be often an accessible curb lower). All public transport has clear, often digital indicators indicating the subsequent stops and audio bulletins. 

For extra data on accessible journey take a look at Lonely Planet’s accessible travel resource.