second largest city of Poland and the country's ancient
capital is sometimes spelled as Cracow in English although its
correct English name is Krakow nowadays.
(Krakow) is the top tourist destination of Poland. The city
basks in glory of its long history and it greatly treasures
its reputation of the culture capital of Poland.
Cracow's seven universities plus almost twenty other institutions of
higher education make it the country’s leading center
of science and education. The city's expanding service sector
is the lifeblood of local economy but varied industry and
production still provide substantial proportions of jobs
is the metropolis of southern Poland and the capital city of
the Malopolska Province (Wojewodztwo Malopolskie).
The city has about 755,000 permanent
residents and the Cracow conurbation totals some 1.5 million
people. The cosmopolitan atmosphere of the city center may be
somewhat misleading. Despite recent growth in the number of
immigrants and expatriates, inhabitants of Cracow remain ethnically almost homogeneous
and they proudly declare
their Polish nationality.
of Cracow, Poland.
Geographic coordinates of
downtown Cracow are 50°04'N 19°56'E. The city lies in
southern Poland on the banks of Wisla (Vistula) river.
Cracow has area of 326.8
square kilometers which amounts to 0.1 percent of the
territory of Poland.
The average elevation of
Cracow is about 220 meters above sea level.
There are several hills in the city of which highest,
Sowiniec, rises 384 meters above sea level.
The oldest artifacts
excavated in Cracow date from the Paleolithic period (early
Stone Age), some 200,000 years ago. Archeologists have
established that the area was a regional center from the
Neolithic period 6,000 BC. Cracow was already a thriving city
circa 990 when the early rulers of Poland incorporated it into
their newly created state. In 1038 Cracow gained the status of
the capital of Poland. In 1257 Prince Boleslav the Shy gave
the city self-government and key commercial privileges.
Officially Cracow retained the title of Poland's capital to
the end of the 18th century yet the political center had been
transferred to Warsaw in 1611. From 1815 until 1846 Cracow
with its environs enjoyed short-lived independence of sorts as
a quasi-sovereign statelet called Cracow Republic to be
annexed soon to the Austrian Empire. At the outset of the 20th
century Cracow became the hub of the Polish national awakening
and in 1918 it was the first Polish city to abolish the
Cracow versus Krakow
The original spelling
of the Polish name of the city is Kraków, pronounced ‘krakoof’.
The slightly anglicized version 'Krakow' has been universally
adopted in modern English since the middle of the 20th
century. It replaced the older, now outdated spelling Cracow
which was derived from the city's Latin name 'Cracovia'
or possibly from the French 'Cracovie'. Nevertheless
some native speakers prefer to use the written form Cracow for
some reason whereas nonnative English speakers, including
Krakow-born ones, often learn the old spelling from obsolete
calendar of concerts and other events in Cracow.
By plane, by bus, by train, by
hotels in Cracow
in Cracow and other low-cost accommodation
holiday apartments in Cracow
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the city and the Malopolska region.
estate in Cracow