Christmas and New Year's Eve in Krakow

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Christmas in Krakow, as in other parts of the world, is the most celebrated time of the year. During this special period, the city offers many christmas attractions for its residents and visitors alike.

Christmas Market

In the run-up to Christmas, the Main Square features a Christmas market, where you can find a range of traditional local crafts and sample Polish cuisine like bigos and kaszanka, as well as a wide selection of grilled meat, baked potatoes and other delicacies. There are also cask-shaped stalls offering mulled wine - grzaniec to warm you up and keep in a good mood.

Szopki Krakowskie

There is a unique local tradition (dating back to the 19th century) of making miniature models of famous historical buildings in Krakow. They also feature miniature figurines presenting the nativity scene as well as Krakow's history and legends. This fabulous, colourful models called Szopki Krakowskie are on display on the Main Square on the first Thursday in December. Afterwards, szopki can be seen in Palac Krzysztofory on Rynek Glowny 35 (35 Main Square). They are on display till February.

Christmas cribs

Traditional Christmas crib can be seen on the Main Square as well as in all the Krakow's churches.

Christmas traditions in Poland

In Poland the most celebrated part of Christmas is Christmas Eve called Wigilia, when all the family meet at the traditional Christmas Eve supper. It is time for singing Christmas carols and unwrapping Christmas presents. Traditional Christmas Eve supper used to contain 12 different dishes, but nowadays there are usually not that many. Some most popular dishes include:

Barszcz z uszkami: beetroot soup with little ear-shaped dumplings stuffed with wild mushrooms
Fried carp
Jellied carp
Pierogi z kapusta i grzybami: dumplings filled with cabbage and wild mushrooms
Kapusta z grzybami: cabbage cooked with wild mushrooms
Stewed fruit drink made from prunes, dried pears and apples
Kutia: made from wheat, poppy seeds, honey and various nuts, raisins, figs and almonds

New Year's Eve

In the city...

When the Christmas is over everybody is awaiting the New Year's Eve Party!Every year the New Year's Eve in Krakow is celebrated on the Main Square. The party has become part of the  city's landscape, drawing thousands of participants each year. On this last and the most exciting night of the year, the inhabitants of Krakow, as well as tourists from Poland and abroad, meet at the heart of the Old Town to celebrate together. The celebrations are accompanied by live concerts as well as fireworks display.

In the mountains...

Apart from the Main Square you can celebrate the New Year's Eve in myriad of Krakow's hotels and clubs. However, if you feel like a winter break from the city and wish to welcome the New Year amids beautiful, showy landscape, you can visit Zakopane, the most popular Polish mountain resort located 100 km south of Krakow.
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