BootsnAll Travel Network


It was, I guess, like I expected: depressing, eerie and so full of tourists that it was hard to see anything except the vastness of the space.

Traveling to Auschwitz is a full day experience – it was an hour and a half bus ride, a 20 minute movie, a 3.5 hour tour including a surprisingly small part of all the museums and information at the camps with lots of waiting in line and a two hour ride back. It could easily be a two day on-your-own experience, and when I do it again, someday, I don’t think I will take a guide. I already have a pretty good info on the background of the Holocaust and the self guide info I saw seemed really thorough.

Still, if you do go, DONT GO WITH A KRAKOW TOUR and save yourself big bucks.

Take the 9:30 a.m. bus from the main bus/train station. It’s 7 zlotys. You get to the camp around 10:50. Walk to the museum, and get a ticket for the 11:30 English Tour and watch the 11 a.m. moving beforehand to get the background and see some footage.

The 11:30 tour costs 26 zlotys, including the movie. If you speak Polish and go on that tour, it’s only 11. There is also a 1 p.m. English tour.

The tour will finish at 2:50 – just timed for you to get the 2:55 bus back to town. Another 7 zlotys.

Total tour price: 40 zlotys (about $13 USD). Tour prices from Krakow that do the same thing, just with their own bus? 120 zlotys (about $40 USD). Save yourself the headache and do it this way. If you have any energy left after the mammoth tour, there are buses running almost every hour back to the city.

I’ve left out my ideas about the camp and what seeing it was like because I don’t have anythind to say but, when you really grasp everything that went on, it’s immensely horrifying. Unfortunately, obnoxious people, text-messaging teenagers and ignorant people who say things like, “The United States knew and did not do anything???” without thinking their home country (England) would have known too, tend to hamper the experience.

The guide suggests coming in winter, when the site is better respected…and you don’t spend half your time waiting in line.

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