You either love or hate Christmas. Some people love the crisp winter air, the streets glowing with decorations and the buzzing atmosphere around the towns and cities. Others might see it as stressful picking out presents, spending huge amounts of cash, and getting trampled on by customers in busy shops. Money can be a problem this time of the year but I’m going to try and keep you your bank account and intact.
A lot of people can’t seem to get in the Christmas spirit anymore, but that will all change once you see what Kraków has lined up for you. As you wander through the glowing streets of the Old Town you will eventually come across the winter wonderland sat in the heart of the Old Town Square. The crisp winter air mixes with the smell of mulled wine and roasting chestnuts while a sense of imagination brings you back to Medieval times as you venture through the cozy wooden log cabins littered around the square.
Now it’s time to snap back to reality and remember that you’re here to do some Christmas shopping. A lot of us think people only want expensive designer brand clothing and expensive jewelry when the reality is people appreciate unique and personal gifts. Between the Christmas market and the Cloth Hall Market, you will be able to pick up a present for anyone. At rock bottom prices you can find thoughtful gifts such as thick woolly jackets, handmade crafts, locals souviners, and even jewelry. Both your wallet and the people receiving presents will appreciate this.
After an exciting day of exploring the Old Town and shopping for gifts at the market, you should take a chance to relax and inhale the Christmas spirit. Get a hot chocolate or mulled wine into you to warm up your bones and start roaming around the cobblestoned streets admiring the gorgeous architecture of the medieval town before arriving at Milkbar Tomasza. As you’re in Poland you must experience a traditional Polish restaurant and a traditional Polish meal. This is the cheapest and my favorite place for a meal in Kraków. You get 4 delicious dumpings for 9 PLN or 8 for just 16 PLN (3.45 EUR)!!
After a day of Christmas joy the day before, you kickstart your day with your daily fix of caffeine at Mo-Ja Café, and while you’re en route to the Jewish District, make a stop for some sightseeing at the Royal Wawel Castle. As you climb to the top you stop for a minute to take in the breathtaking scenery as the pretty city of Kraków is concealed under a blanket of snow. Snap up a couple of photos for some well-earned likes on your Instagram account then move on to exploring the astonishing courtyards of the castle and cherish the numerous buildings and structures that are on offer all for free.
Since the castle is on the way to the Jewish District it’s only a 10-minute walk to Plac Nowy, a local market. If you didn’t find a gift for someone back in the old town, you certainly will here. This is more a vintage flea market than a Christmas market and the upside to this is that you’re sure to stumble across a unique gift. The highlight of this square for me was coming across a stall selling tons of classical vinyl records! I managed to pick up 4 for the price of one back home.
As the evening draws closer you can take a seat at one of the top-rated cafés and bistros in the Jewish Square or you can get yourself over to Judah Square Food Truck Park for a well earned meal. Since you are on a budget and this is the cheapest region in Kraków for accommodation, food, and drinks, you should get yourself down to Propaganda Pub. This pub is bursting with character and cheap drinks. As you sit back in this cozy pub sipping away on your beer, seeing the ceiling covered in decorations, and listening to Christmas songs play in the background you forget all about the bad experiences that can come around this time of the year.
If you are visiting Kraków for Christmas or at any stage, you can link on the link down below and discover the best free things to do while you are here, perfect if you are stuck on a budget.
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