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Which hotel? & Auschwitz

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Which hotel? & Auschwitz


We're planning a visit to Krakow in September & have narrowed it down to 3 hotels. We'd love to know people's opinions on Pugetów, Senacki & Gródek?

Also, how is the easiest was to visit Auschwitz? We are possibly thinking of doing it on our last day add or flight back is not till 10pm. Do we do the journey ourselves or is it beneficial to do an organised tour? Any tour companies that can be recommended?

Craigavon, United...
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1. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Hi there, the easiest way to visit Auschwitz would be with an organised trip, that is how we visited the camps and are glad we did as the guide was excellent and full of information which we would not otherwise have got. Im not sure i would do the tour on my last day as its a long exhausting day mentally and physically, as for tour companies i cant remember which one we use but others will be able to advise on that.


Krakow, Poland
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2. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Of those 3 hotels I'd certainly recommend the Grodek first.

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3. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Thanks Phil C. Can I ask why you'd say the Gródek?

Krakow, Poland
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4. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

The Senacki is OK, a good location but on a noisy street. The Pugetow is very nice but a little way out of the old town. The Grodek is a lovely hotel, located just inside the old town, but up a quiet cul-de-sac.

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5. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Thanks Phil. Do you know anything about visits to Auschwitz?

Krakow, Poland
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6. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

I know plenty, but i'm not allowed to talk about them on here :-)

Nowy Sacz, Poland
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7. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Let me help:

The museum site in Oświęcim is approximately 1-1.5 hours from Krakow.

The museum is open all year long, seven days a week, except January 1, December 25, and Easter Sunday. The Museum is open during the following hours:

08:00 – 15:00 December to February

08:00 – 16:00 March, November

08:00 – 17:00 April, October

08:00 - 18:00 May, September

08:00 – 19:00 June, July, August

Admission is free of charge, but between April and October it is mandatory to join a guided tour – cost 25zl each on a tour in Polish, 40zl for tours in other languages. Fee includes the Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau sites with a guide, headphone rental and transportation (minibus shuttle) to and from Birkenau. With your receipt, you will also be able to view the film shot just after the liberation of Auschwitz (15 minutes, English on the hour and Polish on the half hour) in the main building which also houses a café, bookstore and toilets.

Expect the tour to last roughly 4 hours.

The museum recommends a minimum age of 14 years for visitors.

It’s worth pointing out that the camps are kept as original as possible, with little provision for the disabled (the disabled were one of the groups the Nazis exterminated in camps like Birkenau). Wheelchairs are permitted, but will be hard work on cobbles and rough paths, and entry to a number of buildings using a chair will not be possible due to stairs, steps and narrow corridors. Pushchairs are not permitted in some of the museum buildings.

For those who can’t stand for 3.5 hours – there’s some sitting-down time on the shuttle between the camps, there’s a café in the main museum building, and you’ll find various places you can have a seat as you go. But watch out – many people every year lose sight of their guides … you’ll still hear his or her voice over your headset, but they’ll have moved on!

Tour times

Individual or personal group tours are provided but must be reserved (preferably in advance) individually. Date, time and language are all selected at the time of bookng. Cost 250zl per tour for up to 10 visitors, 300zl per tour for 11-30 visitors.

To book a personal tour, this is where you start en.auschwitz.org/z/index.php…

Timings for Spring – Autumn museum-led open group tours are as follows. The schedule for group tours over the winter will be published later – probably in October.

Groups in English:

April and October: every hour between 10:30 and 15:30

May-September: every 30 minutes between 09:30 and 15:30

Groups in Polish:

April-June, October: every hour between 10:00 and 15:00

July-September: every 30 minutes between 09:30 and 15:00

Groups in German and French:

April, October: 11:45

May-September: 10:45, 12:15 and 13:45

Groups in Italian and Spanish:

April, October: 12:00

May-September: 10:30, 12:00 and 13:30 (Italian) / 10:00, 12:00 and 14:30 (Spanish)

Groups in Czech and Slovak

July and August: 10:00, 12:00 and 14:00 (Czech) / 11:00 and 13:00 (Slovak)

If requested, groups will also be created with the guide speaking Russian, Swedish, Serbian, Croatian, Japanese or Hungarian.

From 1 November 2013 to 31 March 2014 the groups will be organized in Polish, English, French, German, Italian and Spanish

• Polish: 11.00 a.m., 1.30 p.m. (except for 27.01.2014)

• English: 10.30 a.m., 11.30 a.m., 12.30 p.m., 1.20 p.m. (except for 27.01.2014)

• French: 12.30 p.m. (except for 27.01.2014)

• German: 12.30 p.m. (except for 27.01.2014)

• Italian: 12.30 p.m. (except for 27.01.2014)

• Spanish: 12.30 p.m. (except for 27.01.2014)

Fee for guided tours:

Polish-language: 25 zloty (reduced fee: 20 zloty)

Other languages: 40 zloty (reduced fee: 30 zloty)

Tour tickets for individual visitors can be purchased only at the museum.

Visitors ask if it is possible or wise to combine visits to the museum with other activities. Many people are deeply affected by what they see at Auschwitz. Tours from Kraków offer the chance to combine a visit to the museum with Wieliczka Salt Mine – that is a long day, and the mine is tiring on top of an emotional morning at Auschwitz. For those who stay in Kraków, public transport is available to both Oświęcim and Wieliczka. A morning at Wieliczka can be combined by tram with a stop at the Schindler factory and museum of the occupation.

Getting to Auschwitz from Kraków

Oświęcim is clearly signposted from the E40, between Katowice and Kraków. There is parking at both camps, and a shuttle bus between Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II Birkenau.

For anyone staying in Kraków, or wanting to visit Auschwitz before coming on to KW24, there are a number of tour companies operating out of Kraków, among them:



Do some checking before you book.

For example, a full tour by Kraków Tours starts with collection from an agreed point, eg hotel, using a day van and take a maximum of six passengers, who get, or get to see: the documentary film “The liberation of Auschwitz” shown en route; a short introduction at the museum and a guide book; at least 2.5 hours at Auschwitz I to allow visits to the permanent and national exhibitions; their own transfer to Auschwitz II – Birkenau, via the original Judenramp where the first half million prisoners were unloaded from bulk transports and the church in the former SS barracks where they explain the significance of the stained glass windows, etc. In Birkenau, they offer a guided walk and time to reflect on what you have seen and heard, before returning to Kraków via the former theatre/warehouse used to store the pellets that made the cyclone B gas, the cross that caused so much controversy when erected for the visit of Pope John Paul II, the house where first commandant, SS-Obersturmbannführer Rudolf Höss lived, then the mass grave for 470 prisoners who died just before and just after the liberation. Finally, on the way out of Oświęcim, the former SS brothel (Freudenabteilung) and the former SS barracks.

Some other “tours” are simply collect and delivers – pick you up, drop you at the museum, wait for you to complete the museum’s own guided tour and return you to Kraków. Other companies offer something in between.

Alternatively, for maximum flexibility and minimum cost, take a bus or minibus from the main station in Kraków to Oświęcim and get off at the museum stop. Buses run from the bus station next to the main rail station, and you can buy a ticket from the driver. Using the buses means you are not tied to the tour’s departure time from the museum and can spend as long at the camps as you wish. Don’t wait until the last bus, though – you may find it’s jam-packed full and you have to stand in the aisle all the way back to Kraków.

Work on the first bus from Krakow being about 07:00 and the last bus back about 19:00, with buses or minibuses about every 20 minutes.

For completeness, trains from Kraków to Oświęcim are less frequent, slower, and stop some distance from the museum. However some people prefer them because they are less busy, they can drink a coffee, and the station is in any event only 15 minutes’ walk or a short taxi ride from the museum,

Taxis are also an option – especially if you wanted to go to Auschwitz very early in the morning, or direct from JPII Airport. You can fix a price for the driver to pick you up at an agreed time for both the outward and return journeys.

Edited: 23 January 2014, 19:24
London, United...
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8. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

brilliant information. Many thanks.

Lake Elsinore...
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9. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Thank you for the valuable information. Very detailed. We appreciate it.


Adelaide, Australia
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10. Re: Which hotel? & Auschwitz

Great information! We will be in Krakow in October and I desperately want to see Auschwitz but now believe this may be difficult for me as I have a fused ankle joint and stairs can pose a bit of a problem. Are there many stairs?