This week flydubai launched its new route to Krakow, Poland – becoming the first UAE carrier to fly into the city. The inaugural flight from Terminal 2 at Dubai International Airport landed at John Paul II Kraków Airport on April 8.
The airline now operates daily flights between Dubai and Krakow on its new Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft that includes a business class that has fully reclining seats – a move that was first announced at the Dubai Airshow back in November.
The flight time towards Krakov from Dubai is just around 5.5 hours. Round trip tickets will start from Dh2,325 return including taxes.
For those keen on a visit, here are six not-to-miss things to do in Krakow:
Visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine
The salt mine is about a 30-minute drive from Krakow and is on the Unesco World Cultural and Natural Heritage List. Tours typically last about three hours with guides explaining the history of how salt was mined in the city. The salt mine actually reaches an underground depth of 327 metres – although not all levels are open to the public. Some of the coolest aspects included seeing chambers with salt chandeliers and status as well as an underground saline lake with beautiful blue and green waters. Interestingly enough, even though the tour consists of a lot of walking (approximately three kilometres), you barely feel it. Here’s a tip: wear comfortable walking shoes and bring a jumper - when you’re that far underground, it will get chilly.
Stop for lunch at Szara Gęś
The name of restaurant in the Main Market Square translates to Grey Goose. Tucked away next to other shops and little markets, this eatery could be missed but definitely shouldn’t be. The interior décor features Gothic-inspired arches and high ceilings as well as comfortable seating and reasonable prices. This place is well worth a visit. The menu consists of Polish cuisine with a focus on goose. However, don’t let that fool you - they do have vegetarian options as well including an impressive Porcini mushroom soup.
Explore the street art
There’s no need to pay to go to an art museum when there’s beautiful art available all around the city. For example, there are some creative street murals around the Jewish Quarter that line the walls outside of hip little boutiques and coffee shops. Just walking down one street, there were plenty of artworks that made us stop and get our cameras out. Some of the more famous works in the city include Lem’s Robot, which takes up one side of a building and is dedicated to sci-fi writer Stanislaw Lem. Whether it’s a small piece of graffiti or a large mural, there’s so much to see and discover creatively in Krakow.
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Go inside St Mary's Basilica
Located adjacent to the Main Market Square, the church is worth a visit because of its stunning interior. Its brick outside may not look like much, but once inside, it’s a different story with bright colours, statues and paintings mixed with beautiful symmetrical designs inside the basilica. Although those on the outside can still enjoy the surrounding area. Every hour the St Mary's Trumpet Call is played from the top of the taller of St Mary's two towers. Note that there is an extra charge for those wishing to video tape or take photos on their phones while inside.
Take a walk around the Vistula
The Vistula is a wonderful area for walking or people watching. When the weather is especially nice, it’s not unusual to see many people going for a stroll or a bike ride around the area. If you’re lucky, you might even a cherry blossom tree in bloom. Or for those who would prefer to be closer to the water, there are rides offered on the river. It’s also worth mentioning there’s a dragon statue near the Wawel Castle that follows an old ancient myth about a dragon that once terrorized the city. The cool thing is it actually breathes out fire – although it happens at random times throughout the day.
Enjoy the sunset on the rooftop terrace at Sheraton Grand Krakow
Open to everyone, even those who aren't guests at the hotel, the rooftop terrace offers good views of the Vistula as well as Wawel Castle. It also has retractable doors that are used to open up more space and connect with the outdoors. Even though it's located only on the fifth floor, you're still high enough to get an impressive view of Krakow. If you go during sunset, you'll be able to snap up Instagrammable photos near the city skyline. However, make sure to go while the weather is nice because it will be closed during the winter.