Krakow, Poland: March 1-8, 2012
*Make your reservations soon as space is limited. Deadline extended to October 1st. Contact Arawjo Tours at 610-865-4816 or by email at ArawjoTours@aol.com.
Krakow is a city whose roots go back to the early Middle Ages, when the original settlement functioned as a fortified castle on the Wawel Heights. It has a complex history that includes serving as the seat of the Polish kings until 1609, being incorporated into the Austrian Hapsburg empire as part of Galicia in 1846, and, during World War II, becoming the capital of the Nazi General Government administered by the notorious Hans Frank, who used the royal palace on Wawel hill as his residence.
Today an intellectual center, Krakow is home to one of the oldest universities in Central Europe, the Jagiellonian University, first established in 1384 by King Kazimierz Wielki. Like Prague, Krakow has many beautifully-preserved buildings, but the atmosphere is distinctly medieval, with narrow alleys, cobblestone streets and cellar restaurants and taverns greeting the excited traveler with the smells of delectable Polish cuisine. Famous for being the setting of Steven Spielberg's masterpiece Schindler's List, Krakow is a city with a sometimes dark past, but whose contemporary youthfulness and energy coupled with the medieval landscape make it a natural rival to Prague--and, quite rightfully, a European jewel.
Smaller than Prague but larger than Bruges, Krakow is a very manageable, comfortable, tourist-friendly city that is only recently gaining the attention it deserves. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Krakow is, in my opinion, among the top three most charming cities in all of Europe (the other two already mentioned above, Prague and Bruges). Scrumptious pierogies (the best in the world!), the purest vodka, friendly young Polish students eager to test their English, a grand Market Square that will stun you with its beauty, a chance to listen to Klezmer music in the Jewish Quarter, countless opportunities for optional excursions to such fascinating places as the Wieliczka Salt Mines (another UNESCO World Heritage Site), the beautiful resort town of Zakopane in the Tatra Mountains, and, for those interested in World War II history, the chance to visit Auschwitz-Birkenau, a must-see for anyone interested in Holocaust remembrance--all of these things are at your fingertips in Krakow.
This trip is simply one that you will NEVER forget. Come join us and experience one of the greatest "best-kept secrets" of central Europe.
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