Krakow Interesting Facts and Numbers

25.10.2018

Ready for Krakow interesting facts? If you are about to visit Krakow and willing to discover some untypical info on this magical city prior to your trip, read through the little guide to expose yourself to the less known dimension of the city of Polish kings.

#1 HOW BIG IS KRAKOW?

Krakow covers the area of 327 square kilometers, stretching for 18 kilometres from the North to the South and 31 kilometres from the West to the East; the city is extensively covered by cycling trails and this is what makes it a great place for ardent bikers. Jozef Pilsudski Mound is the highest point located within the city’s borders, reaching 383 metres above the sea level. There are a few European capital cities that happen to be relatively close to the foremost Polish royal city Krakow is – the shortest route to Prague is 533 kilometres long, whilst in order to travel to Vienna, Budapest or Bratislava, you need to traverse 461, 650 and 454 kilometres, consecutively.

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#2 KRAKOW HISTORY: FROM ZERO TO INFINITY

The history of Wawel in Krakow is a long and fascinating tale that encompasses early pagan settlements around Wawel Hill, dragons, invasions from the steppes and mythical kings. The name of the city first appears in historical records a bit later – in 966, when Abraham ben Jacob mentions it as a significant commercial hub of Central Europe. The birthday of Krakow is said to be 5 June of 1257 – this is when it was officially established as a city and acquired the Magdeburg Laws. Krakow still holds the record for the longest time of serving as the capital city of Poland – it would perform the function 3 times in its history, loosely between 1040 and 1609.  This is when it gained the most of its prominence.

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#3  SAFETY IN KRAKOW – KRAKOW INTERESTING FACT FOR VISITORS

If you are planning a visit this might be one of the most important Krakow interesting Fact – safety. Poland is placed 22nd in the ranking of worldwide safety provided by OECD for mid-2016, remaining one of the three European countries not having been affected by organised armed attacks in the 21st century, while – with regard to the same period – the low crime levels concerning Krakow itself, when juxtaposed against the whole country, have dropped by 9%.

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#4 THE RECORD-BREAKING MAIN SQUARE

This Interesting Fact about Krakow is really astonishing. The Main Square gained its shape in the 13thcentury, with the dimensions of 200 x 200 metres and 11 streets diverging from its corners. Various sources claim that the size of 40,000 square metres made the Main Market Square of Krakow the largest city plaza of medieval world and – definitely, when it comes to the beauty of buildings and impressive palaces placed there – one of the most architecturally pleasing one. The monument of renowned Polish writer Adam Mickiewicz erected in the square is the favourite meeting spot of Krakow dwellers (if you ever get lost in the area, here are the geographical coordinates of the central place of the city: 50º03’41″N and 19º56’17”).

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The Main Market Square is also where the oldest remaining shrine of Krakow was erected: the 10th-century St. Adalbert church (one of the 145 shrines of Krakow7 of which are synagogues). The mysterious knife hanging at the Cloth Hall is yet another object of interest that may be found at the Square – the legend says that it was used by one of the builders of St. Mary’s church to kill his brother, for fear that he might have erected a higher tower than the one he had built. To hear the other stories related to it, it suffices to ask one of the stallholders inside the hall.

#5 ST. MARY’S TRUMPET CALL SUDDENLY STOPS – WHY?

So Trumpet Call is being played hourly in Krakow – its one of the city symbols, however the melody stops suddenly which symbolises the moment where back in 1240 trumpeter wanted to warn the locals of an approaching enemy but was hit by an arrow and could not finish the melody. You can hear it today and hear it. Do you believe in this interesting fact about Krakow? Just listen to it yourself!

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#6 13-TONNE HEAVY BELL

12 bell ringers!!!! are required to swing the bell in order to put it in motion at all. Wawel, this is where the second-heaviest Polish bell is hung: the Royal Sigismund Bell, cast in 1520, weighing about 13 tonnes and tolling on the special occasions or holidays of Polish national importance.  The legend says that touching it when nobody watches may bring love to the lonely ones.

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#7 WAWEL – MYSTERIOUS PLACE OF CHAKRA

A popular belief that Wawel Hill (St. Gereon’s chapel, to be more precise) is where one of the seven Earth Chakras lies, emanating with strong spiritual energy, would gain great fame in the mid 20thcentury. You may see many people touching the wall of the shrine to feel the energy that is said to be accumulated there as you approach. While standing at the fortifications of Wawel in summertime, there will surely be the view of Europe’s largest artificial city beach at the Vistula’s bank stretching opposite to the castle.

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#7 SCHINDLER’S LIST – STEVEN SPIELBERG’S MOVIE SHOT IN JEWISH QUARTER

Most famous Steven Spielberg’s movie was shot in Kazimierz – Krakow Jewish District. Old synagogues, quarters and the spirit of Jewish culture is still remaining in the city.

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#8 WHATS ALL ABOUT WITH THIS HEAD?

Most interesting fact for Krakow not just for tourists but also locals. Being in Krakow you probably remember this sculpture on main market square but no-one actually knows whats that? Its Eros Bendato, head of love god. It has a band on eyes. Why? Because love is blind ;)

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