Saint Stanislaus of Krakow Route

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The route begins by the Archicathedral of SS Venceslas and Stanislaus (Royal Cathedral) on Wawel Hill. The church was expanded and rebuilt many times, mostly from the 12th to the 14th century. Originally, it was the Romanesque temple, built by the first King of Poland, Boleslaus Chrobry (the Brave). The Cathedral is a place of coronations and burials of Polish kings, and burials of famous Poles as well (poets: Adam Mickiewicz, Juliusz Slowacki, military leaders: Tadeusz Kosciuszko, Jozef Pilsudski, Wladyslaw Sikorski). The Zygmuntowska Tower houses the Sigismund’s Bell whom majestic sound accompanies only the most significant events.

Descending from Wawel Hill, we visit the Bernardine Church built in the 15th century, destroyed in 17th during the war known as "the Swedish Deluge", and rebuilt in the Baroque style. Going further along the Vistula embankment we reach the Baroque Church of SS Michael and Stanislaus and the Pauline Church and Monastery ,,Na Skalce" (On the Rock). According to the tradition, it is here that in 1079 the conflict between king Boleslaus Smialy (the Bold) and Bishop Stanislaus of Krakow (also known as Stanislaus of Szczepanow) ended in the death of the bishop. As the legend claims, his hacked body miraculously grew back together and was later duly buried in Wawel Cathedral. In mid-13th century the confession of St Stanislaus was put up in the centre of the church. Every May, a ceremonious procession leaves Wawel Cathedral with relics of the Saint to reach Skalka. In the crypt under the church many famous Poles were buried (Jan Dlugosz, Stanislaw Wyspianski, Jacek Malczewski, Karol Szymanowski, Czeslaw Milosz).

From Skalka, we walk along Skaleczna Street by St Catherine's Church built in the 14th century for the Augustinians and being the purest example of French Gothic form in Krakow's architecture. Further, the route takes us to Wolnica Square - the former Market Square of the City of Kazimierz founded in the 14th century by King Kazimierz Wielki (Casimir the Great). In its western part stands the 18th-century City Hall of Kazimierz, currently housing the Etnographic Museum. Slightly off the Square stands Corpus Christi Church erected in the 14th/15th centuries.

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