9. Krakow: Auschwitz-Birkenau Tour with Lunch & Private Options
Auschwitz Birkenau is one of the most important and recognizable places in the world. This place is proof of what one human being can do to another. With an English-speaking driver, get picked up from a chosen location and enjoy a comfortable bus to the city of Oświęcim, where the Auschwitz 1 death camp was located.
When you arrive, you will first meet your official museum guide. He will tell you about the rules of the tour and after you go through security gates, similar to those at the airport, you will receive headphones and a receiver set, so you can listen to the guide's stories, who will speak into the microphone.
The tour begins at the legendary gate "Arbeit Mach Frei". The place where murderous and destructive work was performed by prisoners. The sightseeing route leads through all the most important barracks, which are dedicated to specific topics, such as daily life, work, selection, and extermination.
There is an original exhibition in each of the barracks. Original and stolen belongings of prisoners, such as suitcases, glasses, or children's toys, all this, combined with the guide's story, makes you think and does not allow you to pass by indifferently over this exhibition.
The last, but also the most dramatic place on the Auschwitz 1 route is the gas chamber and the place where the corpses of prisoners were burnt. This place and its silence is just terrifying. After visiting the first part of the camp (Auschwitz 1), there will be a short break (about 15 minutes).
Board the bus to the second part of the camp called Auschwitz II (Birkenau). The ride takes 10 minutes and you will join the same guide you already know on site. Visiting the second part of the camp will take about 1 hour.
Auschwitz II Birkenau is an open space and a place that shows in its vastness the scale of the crime that happened here. Gas and cremator chambers were located here, where thousands of people were murdered. You will see the place where the selection was made, the so-called ramp.
It was here that the decision about life or death was made. In Birkenau, you have to walk about 1 km so you should wear comfortable shoes. After the sightseeing and a short break, you will return to the driver who will take you back to Krakow.