Why Kids Love Krakow
Krakow is a children-friendly city. Kids are welcome by
definition almost everywhere–tourist
shops, etc. Obvious exceptions are places of
grown-up entertainment, from
casinos. At the same time parents or other
chaperones are expected to take full responsibility for
minors in their care and make them behave (albeit the
locals, in Krakow and in Poland generally, are pretty
tolerant towards romping children: ‘kids are kids’).
Children rather like Krakow too. The city’s historic
monuments fire their imagination and other
are plentiful enough to keep them happy.
Children’s Krakow Favorites
Kids enjoy the compact
Krakow zoo, situated in the middle of the vast
500-hectare Las Wolski forest, turned to municipal park in
1917, some ten kilometers west of the city’s central
Old Town historic district. Its seventeen
hectares accommodate over 1400 exotic animals, in that
number some 600 birds and 400 mammals, representing 285
species, 32 of them on the verge of extinction and 88
endangered. Its most prized possessions include herds of
pygmy hippopotamus, white camel, sea lions, several species
of wild cats and rare antelopes, while the zoo’s Reptile
House features dwarf caimans, lizards, turtles, snakes,
amphibians, invertebrates and exotic fish.
The subterranean world of the
Wieliczka Salt Mine, so fascinating to adults,
seem to enthrall children even more than their parents.
(Please note that the tour would be probably too demanding
Krakow’s sizable water-park complex, Park Wodny, at 126
Dobrego Pasterza street – some five kilometers northeast
from the city center – proves a year-long magnet for kids
who relish its huge slides, whirlpools, and other wet joys.
Recreational area most popular with parents and their
offspring has been traditionally Park Jordana next to
Krakow’s huge downtown
Blonia common, just west of the Old Town. Its
playgrounds, pitches and the like complement the usual park
Six-hectare Stanislaw Lem Science Garden (Ogrod Doswiadczen
im. St. Lema) at 67 Al. Pokoju avenue, opposite M1 shopping
center, provides a series of some 60 interactive plays with
ingenious devices that demonstrate the laws of physics. Open
from May 1 through October 31 between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m.
There are English and Polish instructions and
Entertaining Children in Krakow
Numerous Krakow enterprises provide entertainment for kids,
either exclusively or as important part of their clientele,
from play centers to amusement arcades to
to museums, and even the
Krakow Opera Company caters to minors from time
Krakow lacks a permanent amusement park but it's just an
hour's drive to Poland's top theme parks. And from spring to
autumn various funfairs are enduring feature in the city.
Their favorite location is the site near the Most Grunwaldzki bridge, close to the
Wawel Royal Castle, on the opposite bank of the
The city boasts an IMAX
cinema, situated in the Krakow Plaza
shopping center at 44 Al. Pokoju street, that
also shows three-dimensional movies, documentaries ones as
well as full-length features. Plus, every day children’s
films are screened in each of Krakow’s several multiplexes
yet foreign productions are
always dubbed into Polish.
Krakow has a repertory puppet theater, Groteska at 2
Skarbowa street, close to the Old Town, that stages mostly
children’s plays. Also the city’s other
occasionally put on productions of shows meant for
From October through June the Krakow Philharmonic Orchestra regularly gives special
concerts for children in its Filharmonia concert hall at 1
Zwierzyniecka street that abuts on the Old Town two blocks
north from the Wawel Royal Castle.
Plus, hardly a day passes in Krakow without special events
organized for children. (‘Karnet’ monthly listings
magazine includes info on most of children’s plays,
concerts, films, and other events.)
playgrounds equipped with play apparatus for
kindergarten-age kids are situated in the Planty gardens on
the eastern and the western sides of Krakow's Old Town
central historic district, next to Hotel Royal and the
Archeology Museum respectively.
Downtown green oasis boasts some 5,000 plant species.
There are over 25,000 beds to choose from.
Poland’s mecca of gourmets thanks to its many excellent restaurants.
Travel to Krakow
Over four million
visitors show up in Krakow every year. Many arrive by air, but most take
advantage of the fact that Krakow lies at a major European road and rail
Shopping in Krakow
The city’s central
Old Town historic district,
turned into a pedestrian precinct, teems with stores of all sorts.
The best way to enjoy Krakow
is on foot.
Krakow and beyond.