Kraków Sightseeing

St. Mary’s Basilica (Bazylika Mariacka)

After Tartar raids in the 13th century left the original church in a heap of ruins, St. Mary’s was rebuilt in Gothic style on the existing foundations and consecrated in 1320. In the early 15th century the towers took the iconic form they have today, when the northern tower was raised to 80m high and made into a watchtower for the city. It is from here that the hejnał mariacki - the city's famous bugle call - is played every hour on the hour. One of the city's most enduring traditions, the tune ironically breaks off mid-melody in honour of the mythical trumpeter who was shot in the neck while belatedly warning the city of Mongol invaders; don't miss it.

No matter how many times you see them - the altarpiece, stained glass windows of the nave, and the blue, starred ceiling on St. Mary's will take your breath away. The magnificent wooden altarpiece was the principal work of 15th century German artist Veit Stoss (aka Wit Stwosz) for 12 painstaking years, and depicts the Virgin Mary’s Quietus among the apostles; note, however, that gradual conservation work on the altar is currently underway (projected to last until 2020), and not all elements may be on display during your visit. Surrounding the altar are polychrome paintings by Polish masters Matejko, Mehoffer and Wyspiański done in the late 19th century.

The church is available for worship without paying an entry fee via the main entrance. Tourists are asked to use a side entrance, however, and not visit during services; here we list the tourist visiting hours. Tickets (10/8/5zł; kids under 8 free) are purchased in a separate building across from the tourist entrance.

Mariacki Tower is also open to tourists from April until end of December, but an additional ticket is required (15/10zł; no admission for kids under 7; kids 7-12 must be accompanied by an adult).


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Open 11:30 - 18:00; Sun 14:00 - 18:00. Tower open 09:10 - 11:30, 13:10 - 17:30 Thu, Fri and Sat only. Closed in January.


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Over a year ago
Phil C
Amazing Basilica right in the main square, take a climb up the tower on the hour to get a real close up of the Hejnal. A Tip, if you enter via the front doors you avoid paying the entry fee.
Over a year ago
Lady melinda.waladyslaw"safian
toledo,ohio usa
in quireing about family that live in krakow durning the earl too lmiddle of 1800? that familt attended there a batizls there childern there"" Went by Lord Michael,Waladylslaw"Safain a several son oldest son my grandfather by Walter,Waladyslaw"Safian batizle, commioun there too need information please of there birth records there
Over a year ago
Alfred Sciberras
I have been to Cracow last August and I was greatly fascinated with its beauty. Among the places of interested I have visited St. Mary's Basilica in the Main Square. Its beauty took my breath away and left me speechless. Just before I left this beautiful church I noticed that there are two pulpits, I wonder why as I have never seen a church with two pulpits and I have sisited several basilicas, cathedrals and other churches in different countries. Can anyoneone please let me know why?
Over a year ago
Sue Karolski
A beautiful, fabulous church full of wonderful carvings and pictures. Like all churches in Krakow it is filled with historical interest. Krakow is wonderful if you love fine buildings, restaurants and places to drink and socialise.
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