Krakow has been a famous tourist destination for over decades for its well-preserved historical relics and architecture. In the Old Town, you can draw into the medieval atmosphere and enjoy long lazy walks with a beautiful view. In the Kazimierz district, you can discover Jewish history and culture. Also, Krakow has crucial remnants and documents after WWII available for inspection. If you are willing to participate in an excellent sightseeing tour or just want to check what is worth seeing in Krakow, please read the article: “What to see in Krakow”. But in case you are staying here for a more extended period or you prefer more active holidays, there is a list of activities you can do in this lovely city, other than just admiring the view.
Krakow things to do – Summer activities:
Summertime is the most popular time for travelling and sightseeing. But beautiful weather also allows you to spend time in a more active way and try some new activities. Here is a list of active things to do in Krakow during summer.
Bike path to Tyniec with the abbey
For those who love cycling, there is a beautiful bike path from Krakow to Tyniec mostly going alongside the Vistula banks. The trail is around 8-11 miles one-way depending on your starting point in Krakow, which makes it an excellent whole-day trip. The route is well-adjusted for the cyclists. While riding, you can enjoy lovely views of green areas and Vistula banks.
At Tyniec one of the earliest human traces in Poland were discovered. They date back to around 10 000 BC. Nowadays Tyniec is known for one of the wealthiest and most influential Benedictine monasteries in Poland established in 1044. The monastery is situated on the top of the rock cliff at Vistula bank.
Błonia Park for cycling, rollerblading and skateboarding
Błonia Park is a meadow situated almost in the city centre. The field is 48 hectares and around 2,4 miles long in a perimeter. Nowadays this vast area is used to hold various sports events, concerts or other festivals. Apart from this, the place is a popular destination for the locals to spend some active hours. All the time from the morning until the late evening there are numerous joggers and runners as well as cyclists, rollerbladers and skateboarders. The place is completely free of charge. People usually go there with their own equipment, but if you do not have any or want to try new kind of sport, you can rent stuff right there.
Right next to Błonia Park there is Jordan Park situated. Jordan Park was established in 1889 as the first public playground of its kind in Europe. The idea was to promote the importance of physical education and exercise. Nowadays the park area is 21 ha and offers you a lot of activities to choose from. There are numerous bicycle and pedestrian paths, benches among meadows and trees. Also, the park has several playgrounds, basketball, volleyball and football courts and a tennis court. There is an open-air gym with 100 m racetrack. For those who wish to practice some bicycle, rollerblade or skateboard tricks and not just ride around there is a skate park. What is more, there is a small lake – you can’t swim here, but there are some activities for kids, as small boats. Children can also find here a climbing wall. And if after all those exercises you get hungry there are some cafes.
Entrance is free; the park is open 6 am-10 pm during the summer season and 6am-8pm during the winter season.
At Vistula banks near Wawel Hill, there are numerous boats and barges waiting to take you on a cruise. There are several types of cruises, the most popular one being a sightseeing one which usually takes around an hour. This is an excellent opportunity to see Krakow from an unusual perspective. Also, there are longer ones: several-hours-long trips around Krakow and a day-long cruise to Tyniec. Krakow also has to offer several floating restaurants and ships where you can organise your own parties or banquets.
Rock climbing at Twardowski cliffs
What today is known as Twardowski cliffs used to be a limestone quarry. This is why there is a beautiful park with mostly vertical cliffs that reach even 130 feet. If you prefer calmer activities, this is a suitable place to take a walk and check the outstanding panoramic view on Krakow from the highest cliffs. On the other hand, if you are into more demanding activities, the cliffs are a popular place for rock climbing. There are several climbing routes with constant belaying and safety loops.
By Cracovian climbers, this place is mostly treated like a gym to practice and not as a challenge. Still, you need to be careful because of the high popularity of this site which led to the rock erosion developing at the climbing routes.
At the main square, there are old-styled cabs harnessed with two horses. You can have a fairy-tale experience by taking a ride around the city centre and enjoying the view of old medieval buildings. Usually, during the summer season cabs are available from 10 am until midnight. Those hours can change because of the influence of the various factors as the weather, temperature (if it’s high, the cabs are parked in a different place or have shorter hours of work) or events that take place at the main square.
During spring and summer season there is a possibility of bungee jumping in Krakow. The highest option is to jump from 295 feet height. You can jump alone or in pairs, and also it is possible to buy a voucher as a present.
Krakow things to do – Winter activities:
You may wonder what to do in Krakow during the winter season. Krakow then becomes rather cosy. Temperatures rarely get lower than -5ºC. It is nice to walk down the lit up and decorated streets or sit in an atmospheric cafe over a cup of coffee or mulled wine during long evenings.
When the temperature allows it, in front of Galeria Krakowska (shopping mall), there is an ice rink being made for both tourists and locals. The entrance is free; you have to pay only if you want to rent the ice skates. It is usually open event until the late evening.
Things to do in Krakow – Whole year:
And, of course, there are things to do in Krakow that are available during the whole year.
Botanic Garden of the Jagiellonian University
Botanic Garden of the Jagiellonian University was the first botanic garden in Poland established in 1783. Apart from its primal function as a “live museum” of the plants from all around the world, right from the beginning, the botanic garden has been an essential place of the cultural, scientific and educational development as it has been a place of studies and research as well as an artistic inspiration.
The garden is open every day from 9 am to 7 pm.
Karting is good entertainment if there is bad weather outside or you wish for some adrenaline rush. There are several halls with indoor karting tracks available in Krakow. Companies usually offer races of different time length, student discounts, discounts for buying races in bulk or even the possibility of renting the whole track for a big group or a party.
Krakow has to offer you numerous paintball centres, both indoor or outdoor as well as laser paintball. Some of the companies also have offers for children.
Polish Aviation Museum
The Museum was established at the place of the former airport. The exhibition shows the history and development of aviation. There is a permanent exhibition, but also the museum occasionally organises various educational events. There are over 200 aircraft, which was one of the reasons that the museum is at 8th place in the world aviation museum ranking by CNN.
Things to do in Krakow With kids:
Situated at the heart of Bielany-Tyniec Landscape Park, Krakow Zoo is a popular destination for a more extended pedestrian or cycling trips through the woods. The zoo is surrounded by Wolski Forest, a wooded area for recreation purposes. There is a well-developed net of touristic paths around 25 miles in length, with parking lots and cafes.
The Zoo itself has over 1300 animals of 270 species, including around 100 endangered species. The Zoo is a pleasurable destination for children as well as adults.
Park of the Global education: Settlements of the world
Park of the Global education offers you a private or a group tour where you can see the settlements from various places of the world. The museum is interactive: you can touch objects, try different native activities, see photos and talk with the people who visited and worked at the places from the exhibition. It’s a good possibility of experiencing different cultures and traditions.
The park offers you the traditional Ghanian settlement, Peruvian lodge, Indian teepee, Arctic igloo, Mongolian yurt and Papuan tradition house on stakes.
There are also workshops run by teachers, travellers and missionaries to develop kids’ interests and discover new talents. Also, those workshops profoundly improve empathy and communication skills.
At the park, there is also a shop with original and native handicrafts from Africa, South America and Asia.
Things to do in Krakow – Haunted and Escape rooms:
In Krakow, Escape rooms have gained popularity in recent years, and now there is a great variety to choose from. There are over 60 rooms like this for beginners and advanced clients. There are an adventure, detective, thriller, history, fantasy and original plots and sceneries. The unique ones though are haunted rooms, the most famous one being Lost Souls Alley, or haunted and escape rooms combined, like Lost Souls Alley: Deadly Walk or Fear Factory. The least acceptable age in most of the rooms is 16. Though if you want to attend haunted and horror rooms you need to check contraindications available on their websites.