Despite the fact that Kazimierz today is not a separate city, People Travel advises to devote at least a few hours to this place. This Jewish district of Krakow lost its independence only in the XIX century, so each street keeps imprints of its own unique history here.
Poles and Jews have always lived in the neighborhood. Historically, these two peoples have linked by a common destiny. An example of this is Kazimierz, a Jewish city that only became part of Krakow in the 19th century. Therefore, there are more synagogues than Catholic churches.
Kazimierz can called the spiritual center of Krakow’s Jews. There are Orthodox synagogues, old cemeteries, a gymnasium, a center of Jewish culture.
The Old Synagogue is one of the seven surviving shrines of the Jewish district. It named so for a reason. This the oldest synagogue in the whole state, which built at the beginning of the XV century. The brick building is quite unusual, built in the Gothic style. At the entrance to the temple there a monument, in the shape of a cube, in memory of the people who killed here during the Second World War.
The small synagogue can found among the many restaurants in the Jewish area. The temple built in the early XVII century and considered the private property of one of the richest merchants in the city. Now there is a sculpture school.
The High Synagogue got its name due to the fact that for a long time it considered the tallest temple in the city. It built in the middle of the XVI century. During the hostilities, the temple very badly damaged. The ceiling and roof of the synagogue destroyed, the interior completely looted. In 2008, restoration work completed here, and now the temple is open to tourists. Now exhibitions and various events held in the High Synagogue.
The Bne Emun Synagogue built at the end of the nineteenth century on the initiative of the Jewish Prayer and Charity Society of Bne Emun. During the war, the interior of the building destroyed and converted into a carpentry workshop. Currently, the temple used for lectures. On the south side of the main hall is the canvas of the artist Vincento Capraro “Jews from Vugt”. The synagogue included in the register of monuments protected by law.
The synagogue of Kovea Itim le Torah built at the beginning of the XIX century by the Jewish religious brotherhood “Kovea Itim le-Torah”. A few years later, it slightly restored, and during the war, like other buildings, it destroyed. After the hostilities, there was a point for the reception of displaced persons. Now there are apartments in the building.
In the Jewish quarter, two magnificent buildings erected – the Church of the Body of the Lord and the Church of St. Catharina, which built by King Casimir. The first church is very large and beautiful. It contains the famous canvas of the Italian Venetian painter Tommaso Dolabella “Adoration of the Magi”.
To the right of the church is the Museum of Urban Engineering, which opened in 1998. The building shows exhibits related to the development of urban public transport, utilities and gas facilities. In addition to the main expositions, various interactive exhibitions demonstrated in the exhibition hall for schoolchildren.
The Church of St. Catarina considered the best in the city. It built according to all the canons of Gothic architecture in the XIV century. here is a magnificent organ, which impresses with its grandeur.
The Church on Skalka a beautiful temple built on a hill next to the Vistula River. The church erected in the XIV century, on the site of the murder of Stanislaus the Saint, who the patron saint of Poland. In the dungeon of the temple there a pantheon, where many famous Poles buried.
On Krakowska Street, on the main square of Kazimierz, there is another historical and architectural monument – the Esterka House. The name of the building was in honor of the mistress of the Polish king Casimir the Great, whose name was Esterka. There an assumption that the house built in the XIV century. from its creation to the present time there a residential building, which rebuilt and completed many times. In the XVI century, the building belonged to the architect from Italy Bartolomeo Berecci, serving at the court of the Polish king Sigismund I. Then the House of Esterka began to consider the property of his daughter Anna. Since 1985, a branch of the Krakow Ethnographic Museum has been located here. This building included in the register of legally protected monuments.
The Great Mikvah an architectural monument built in the middle of the XVI century, for the conduct of rada rites by members of the city Jewish community. The ablution room was located in the basement, where more than 40 steps led. During the war, the landmark completely destroyed, but the place for performing rituals preserved. In the middle of the twentieth century, the Great Mikvah restored. At first, it housed the administration of the workshop for the restoration of monuments, now a Jewish restaurant and a hotel. The building included in the register of cultural monuments.
How to get there
The Kazimierz quarter is part of the Stare Miasto district. You can get here by tram, bus or car.
In the northern part of the district there is a ground transport stop “Starowiślna”, where buses No. 610, 662, 669, 904 run. Next to the bus stop there is a tram stop with the same name. Trams No. 1, 17, 19, 22, 71 run here.
In the eastern part of Kazimierz there are two tram stops: “Miodowa” and “Św. Wawrzyńca». They can reach by tram number 3, 8, 13, 17, 19, 24, 69.
To order a car around the city, we recommend using the applications of local taxi services: Uber, Mega, Wawel, iTaxi.