At Christmas time, Krakow swells with excitement and an inviting festive atmosphere. The city’s main square is laced with twinkling lights and decoration, setting the scene for our Christmas break. It’s one of Poland’s oldest cities - we’ll soak up its Gothic atmosphere among the old town’s grand arches, spires and gargoyles. We’ll also stroll through traditional Christmas markets, sip mulled wine on Christmas Day, and explore the fascinating wonder of Wieliczka Salt Mines.
5 nights in hotel (accommodation as specified or similar)
Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from home, for the journey to London Heathrow Airport and your direct, scheduled British Airways flight to Krakow. On arrival we transfer to the Holiday Inn Krakow City Centre (4T+) and are greeted with a welcome drink before dinner.
Krakow has belonged to five different countries, yet the Old Town has not changed much since the 15th and 16th centuries, when it was the capital of Europe’s largest country. It may not have such a grand title anymore, but Poland’s second city is flourishing once again and a walking tour highlights a superb medieval legacy. One of the city’s great treasures is Wawel Castle and Cathedral and we take a tour of this ancient seat of royalty. Within its fortified walls, the castle contains Poland’s crown jewels, while the cathedral, the grandiose scene of almost every coronation in Polish history, protects the remains of many kings, queens and statesmen. Your afternoon is at leisure in this city that is so lovely to explore at Christmas time, as you wander past the impressive Christmas tree and grand buildings adorned with twinkling lights. Dinner is included at the hotel this evening.
Christmas Eve - Krakow
On a guided walking tour of Kazimierz, Krakow’s Jewish Quarter, we’ll learn the story of the Jewish communities that have chosen to live here for over 500 years. We also visit Schindler’s Factory, a museum about Krakow and its citizens during the German occupation, housed in the former enamel factory of Oskar Schindler. The afternoon is at leisure to explore more of this city, or spend the afternoon in one of the many cafés, to soak up the festive atmosphere. From the main square it is only a short walk back to the hotel, where Christmas Eve dinner will be served tonight.
Christmas Day - Krakow
After a leisurely start to the day, join a guide for a stroll amongst the Christmas markets, and enjoy a mulled wine tasting. Old-fashioned hand-painted glass baubles, wooden sculptures, village pottery, embroidered tablecloths and heart-shaped gingerbread fill traditional stalls. We return to the hotel for a Christmas lunch, and then an afternoon at leisure. This evening dinner will be at a local restaurant, with the meal accompanied by a local band, who will treat us to some classic Polish carols.
Boxing Day - Wieliczka
Deep underground, just a few miles outside Krakow, lie the Wieliczka Salt Mines, A guide takes us into this unusual world containing over 20 chambers of chiselled rock salt, amazing underground saline lakes, unique salt statues and the stunning Chapel of St Kinga, dedicated to Princess Kinga whose actions led to finding the salt. It was mined by hand in the 13th century and so, finally closing in 2007, illustrates the development of mining technology over time. You have the afternoon to make your final discoveries of Krakow - perhaps return to the markets for some last-minute shopping, or while away the afternoon enjoying drinks in a local bar, before our final dinner this evening.
Day 6 Krakow - London
We transfer to Krakow Airport for our direct, scheduled British Airways flight to London Heathrow Airport. On arrival you will be met and guided to your Titan vehicle, for the journey home.