Wawel Cathedral : Michelin's recommendations
The cathedral remains the timeless witness of Poland's history. The country's monarchs were crowned and buried here. Dedicated to St Stanislas and St Wenceslas, this is the third church built on this site, this time in the Gothic style. At the transept crossing, an impressive black marble monument is decorated with gilded bronzes; it is known as the St Stanislas Confession. The bishop-martyr's mausoleum was built between 1626 and 1629 to plans by Giovanni Trevano. Between the pillars separating the nave from the south aisle is King Wladyslaw II Jagiello's Tomb made of red marble and topped by a canopy. It is also a masterpiece. Coronation services were held in the chancel with its Baroque choir stalls and high altar. In the south aisle, backing onto the chancel and roofed with a dome, Italian artists created the finest example of Renaissance architecture in Poland, Sigismund Chapel. Near the main door, Gothic vaulting marks the Holy Cross Chapel. The paintings were created by artists from the Pskow School (Russia, 1470). The maze of crypts contains the royal tombs of John III Sobieski, Sigismund III Vasa and others, as well as the tombs of national heroes such as Prince Joseph Poniatowski and Tadeusz Kosciuszko and poets such as Adam Mickiewicz and Juliusz Slowacki. From the sacristy, visitors can climb the Sigismund Tower (view of the city) containing the largest bell in Poland. Cast in 1520 for King Sigismund I the Elder, it weighs 11t and measures 2.60m/8ft in diameter! On the west side of the esplanade stands the Thieves' Tower. A path runs down to and through the Dragon's Lair and on to the banks of the Vistula.
- Address : Ul. Grodzka PL - 31-006 Kraków31-006Kraków
Opening hours :
- 9am-5pm, Sun and Bank Hols 12.30pm-4pm
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