The Schindler Factory Museum is a modern interactive museum that was opened in 2010. This museum is dedicated to the life of Krakow and the Jewish ghetto during the German occupation from 1939 to 1945.
The building for the museum is the former factory of metalware “Rekord”, bought by the famous German industrialists Oskar Schindler in 1939. Initially, Schindler was a member of the NSDAP, but during the Second World War he saved more than a thousand Jews who first worked in his factory, and in 1943 were redirected to the Plaszow concentration camp in the south of Krakow (today the Podgórze district is located on its territory).
Schindler took out 1200 Jewish survivors of the concentration camp to produce parts for artillery shells that Germany desperately needed during the war. Schindler’s new factory was located near the front line – in the Czech city of Břnenec, at that time known as Brünnlitz. On May 8, 1945, the people were liberated by Soviet troops.
The image of Oskar Schindler as a brave humanist entered the history of mankind, and his name became a household name. This story gained immense popularity after the film adaptation of the book “Schindler’s Ark” by the Australian writer Thomas Kenelli. In 1993, the film “Schindler’s List” was released, shot by the famous director Steven Spielberg and received several Oscar awards.
The factory building in Krakow for a long time functioned for its intended purpose, only in 2007 it was transferred to the historical museum, and in 2010 the Schindler Museum was opened. There is also the Museum of Modern Art (MOSAC) in this building.
The main exposition of “Schindler’s Factory” is divided into several topics: the biography of Oskar Schindler, the history of the factory itself, the life of the Krakow ghetto, the fate of the Jews of Krakow and others. According to tourists, only the walls remained from the old factory, but the atmosphere of the museum and exhibits of the Second World War era make you feel the tragic history of Krakow and its inhabitants.
An excursion into history at the Schindler Museum begins with peacetime photographs and documents, but most of the halls are devoted to the period of occupation, the most difficult conditions in which people survived in the city and concentration camps. The exposition ends with a list of rescued Jews and their memories, which are partially translated into Russian.
Modern technologies have been introduced at the Oscar Schindler Factory: sound accompaniment in the halls, information displays, a paid audio guide in different languages.
The museum has several reconstructions, for example, of a Jewish dwelling after the occupation and a cache in order to hide from the Gestapo. One of the most memorable exhibits is an installation listing the names of Jewish workers.
Excursions and prices in 2022
At the Schindler Museum, ticket prices vary depending on the conditions. For example, a group visit without a guide will cost you 2 zlotys cheaper than with a guide, and school groups pay less. There are family tickets for two adults and two children or one adult and three children for 56 PLN.
The Schindler Factory is part of the Krakow Memorial Route, which also includes Pomeranian Street and the Pharmacy Under the Eagle. The cost of tickets is specified on the website.
Guide services are provided to both groups and individual tourists, but you should apply no later than three days before the visit.
In the museum “Schindler’s Factory” in Krakow there is a strict order of visiting exhibitions. Entrance is carried out only in accordance with the time indicated in the ticket. It is allowed to delay the tourist by no more than 15 minutes. The recommended age to visit is from 14 years, although younger children can be accompanied by adults.
The right to a discounted ticket is available to groups and individual guests: schoolchildren, students, graduate students, pensioners, disabled people with accompanying persons, teachers, holders of some honorary signs in the field of culture. More information about this on the official website.
According to reviews, there are very long queues at the museum, and the number of tickets is limited. In order to avoid problems, you can book tickets in advance for visiting on the official website of the Schindler Museum.
In addition to the main exposition, the Schindler Factory organizes excursions to the former Jewish ghetto in Krakow – the so-called “educational walks” in a closed area of the city during the German occupation. Each of these excursions lasts about an hour, has a unique scenario and is intended for people over 16 years of age.
How to get there
The Schindler Factory Museum is located in Kraków, in the Zablocy district at 4 Lipova Street.
It is easily accessible from almost any part of the city. For example, from the historic quarter of Stare Miasto you will need only 10 minutes to walk to the museum.
In the direction of the Oskar Schindler Museum, trams run to the Plac Bohaterów Getta stop (Ghetto Heroes Square).
In Krakow, as in any developed city, it is possible to call a taxi through the application. So you can use the services of Uber, Mega, Wawel, iTaxi and other carriers.