Rakowicki Cemetery

  ul. Rakowicka 26 ,   No District         more than a year ago
Up until the end of the 18th century, all of Kraków's churches had their own cemeteries - a rather unsanitary situation which didn't change until the opening of Rakowicki Cemetery (named after the village it was located near) and the first burial here in 1803. The largest and most important of Kraków's cemeteries, today Rakowicki covers 42 hectares and is full of fine examples of sepulchral art, as well as impressive monuments to PL's 20th century struggles. Some of the most important artists, politicians and statesmen in Polish history are buried here, including painter Jan Matejko, actress Helena Modrzejewska and theatre visionary Tadeusz Kantor. Turn left after entering the main gate to see the oldest section of the cemetery with graves from the first half of the 19th century. Also worth seeking out is 'The Alley of the Distinguished' - a pantheon of contemporary Cracovian and national culture; turn right from the main entrance and follow signs to 'Aleja Zasłużonych' to find the graves of recent heroes Piotr Skrzynecki - founder of the Piwnica Pod Baranami cabaret, and musician and poet Marek Grechuta, among others. You will also find a tomb to the Wojtyła and Kaczorowski families. The Wojtyłas in this case are the mother, father and brother of Karol Wojtyła, better known as Pope John Paul II. Getting there is easy - just take tram 2 to the end of the line. To help you find your way around and catch the highlights, pick up the multi-lingual brochure from the gate attendant (portier) just right of the main entrance.


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