What’s so special about Kraków nightlife?
First came the Slavic tribes and their mythical dragon slayer. Then came the Bohemian dukes and the ambitious monarchs of the Piast Dynasty. Then came the Polish kings and queens of the city’s so-called Golden Age, raising the looming Gothic spires and gilded palaces seen today around the Market Square and Wawel Hill. Krakow then weathered world wars and communist rule alike, finally emerging as the cultural capital of Poland in the 21st century; a place of enthralling museums and mysterious churches, age-old fortifications and criss-crossing cobblestone streets.
Oh yea, and the basements turned to bars, the medieval homes transformed to booming clubs, the onetime mansions of merchant guilds became rowdy beer halls, neon lights and karaoke erupted between the squares and something else beautiful and brilliant and downright debaucherous was born: Krakow nightlife.
The highest concentration of bars in Europe
One popular urban myth has it that this humble city of just one million, sat on the far-flung fringes of the Eastern EU, boasts the highest concentration of cafes, pubs, clubs and bars than any other city on the continent. And while no one’s counting (especially not after a round of deceptively crystal-clear Żubrówka), there’s little doubt that the multitude of dive joints and beer halls, thumping dance floors and Slavic party haunts here makes for a shindig that you’re not likely to forget (or one that you’re certain to, depending on the Żubrówka!).
Krakow’s Old Town is the centre of the action. Once the heart of the medieval city, this maze of stony streets, open squares and hidden alleys is now loaded with more hedonistic potential than any other city in Europe (sorry Budapest, and back off Rome!). The beer is cheap as chips (actually it’s cheaper), the locals know how to party, and there are bucket-list bars by the bucket load.
Something for everyone
So, whether you’re craving a quiet cocktail in a smoky Slavic jazz bar, a Long Island in a speakeasy straight out of the 30s, English ales, IPAs and craft beers brewed by local hops heads, a tongue-tingling vodka tasting session with more raspberry rye shots than you can shake a plate of traditional pierogi at (Krakow’s late-night answer to the drunken kebab), a larynx-busting karaoke sesh beneath the cobbles of the Market Square, or a rambunctious blowout in the company of Erasmus students from Spain, backpackers from Belarus, the ubiquitous UK gap yearers, Aussies so tanned they look like Vegemite, chatty local Poles and keg-standing spring breakers from the US, Krakow’s nightlife has you covered!