The Ultimate Guide to Board Gaming in Kraków: Pubs, Clubs, and Cafés

23.04.2024

The Ultimate Guide to Board Gaming in Kraków: Pubs, Clubs, and Cafés

Playing board games reduces stress, stimulates brain areas that are responsible for memory formation and complex thought processes, and enhances creativity and self-confidence. For locals and tourists alike, there is a vibrant game scene worth exploring, from the traditional board games to those that are more interactive. Whether you’re looking for a calm atmosphere to have tea while playing a classic board game with a friend or you’re looking for a place that’s the ideal setting for some cocktails with friends, there are no shortage of options to be found in Krakow.


 

The Games Dungeon at Meeples Restobar

Meeples Restobar is said to be the ‘go-to’ spot for breakfasts, lunches, and drinks. However, the location is also a prime venue for games of all kinds. According to the Meeples site, board games include Catan, Cascadia, Splendor, Azul, and even a few American classics such as Scrabble and Monopoly. This can make the location a great choice for tourists and locals looking to take part in an international favorite. Scrabble, for instance, is a classic American word game, and happens to be the most popular game in 19 states. Monopoly is another classic board game in the U.S., and leads in 14 states. At Meeples, regular gaming events add to the fun, with weekly roleplaying and scenario-based games providing variety for those looking for a unique experience.

Regarding the menu, the authentic Polish cuisine and variety of drink choices can make any visit well worthwhile (even if you’re not an avid board game player). For example, choosing to play a board game with a side of tea and Meeples cookies can create the perfect way to unwind, while cocktails serve as a great choice when out with a group of friends. The menu features a variety of food choices as well, with options ranging from traditional Polish dishes to those that can suit the palette of even the pickiest diner. From the pasta carbonara to the cottage cheese pancakes with sour cream and jam, chicken nuggets with fries and Rosol present as additional options, there’s something for everyone to pair with a favorite board game.

 

Hex Cafe — a local hidden gem

For those looking for a local hidden gem full of board games galore, the Hex Cafe is a fantastic choice. According to reviews, this cafe boasts ‘hundreds’ of board games. One TripAdvisor review by Kelvin_Fahrenheit, notes that the Hex is a place for ‘underground gamers’ that you’ll likely only find if you already know someone in Krakow. Other reviews remark on the Hex’s wide variety of games, food and beer. A review by Climber441777, for example, highlights the bar as “The best boardgame pub in Krakow” featuring “hundreds of games, good choice of beer and ciders, tasty hotdogs and salads.” Photos on the cafe’s active Facebook page feature a wide variety of board games including Azul, Abyss, Tajniacy, Splendor, Star Wars games, and many, many more.

 

A revival of retro games at Cybermachina

Cybermachina, according to Thrill Nation, is a multi chain company based in Poland, and is located in 12 different areas of the country. A Thrill Nation review of the Krakow game pub describes the experience in detail. The pub features a variety of games, from classics such as chess to Polish games that ambitious tourists can try their hand at. In addition to a variety of board games, the pub also provides the chance to play other games, with a Wii U console and a Guitar Hero station available. The review also makes note that reservations can be made for a table online, which will guarantee that you’ll have a space to play — furthermore, it’s important to take into consideration that the venue can be found open between Thursday to Sunday, opening in the early afternoon and closing as late as three in the morning.
One review of Cybermachina by Nicola Quinn further expands on the experience that one can expect to encounter. “You can grab a controller and play one of the latest releases on an Xbox One or PS4, pull up a seat at an arcade machine and take a trip back to the 80s through all kinds of retro games or pick something from the endless selection of board and card games,” highlights Quinn’s review. However, the fun doesn’t end there — according to Quinn, the bar menu features cocktails that are inspired by video games and their characters. “Pac-Mango” for example, is noted to come complete with a Pacman-shaped lemon slice.

 

The Cosmic Games Pub — an interactive experience

For those looking for a truly out of this world experience, the Cosmic Games Pub has much to offer. For starters, the interior of the pub is designed to resemble a real UFO, a design choice that works to provide a truly unique experience for locals and tourists alike. In regard to the games, the experience is a bit more interactive when compared with traditional board games, with options ranging from cornhole to beer pong and even table shuffleboard. Interesting game options — such as Crazylight, in which the objective of the game is to turn off as many blinking lights as you can. However, the variety doesn’t end there — other games include table football, air hockey, and Pukec.


 

For locals and tourists that are avid board game enthusiasts, Krakow has a vibrant game scene with something for everyone. Whether you’re craving a night of exciting retro gaming with friends or a calm afternoon of the classic board games with a cup of tea, you’re sure to find something in Krakow.

Article by: Jennifer Dawson

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