Auschwitz & Birkenau • Cracow Local Tours

Auschwitz & Birkenau tour

A must-see place to visit in Poland!

Auschwitz & Birkenau

Cracow Local Tours


Konzentrationslager Auschwitz is a very special place. Symbol of terror, genocide and bestiality of the twentieth century. This largest extermination camp as the history of mankind was created by the Germans in mid 1940. Initially, it was to be one of the many labor camps that the Nazis formed from the beginning of the 1930s. However, in 1942, after considerable enlargement, it also became the center of Endlösung der Judenfrage ("the final solution of the Jewish case"), that is, the Nazi plan to murder Jews living in areas occupied by the Third Reich.

The exact number of victims of Auschwitz can not be determined: the SS destroyed almost all documentation, and most of the survivors one was deported by the Soviets. It is assumed that in total, 1.5 million people of 28 nationalities were murdered here, of whom about 90% were Jews. After the war, the area of ​​the camp was transformed into a museum and a memorial and was recognized as a Monument to the Martyrdom of the Polish Nation and Other Nations. In 1979, the place was inscribed on the UNESCO list to warn against fanaticism, extreme nationalism and racism, and the memory of criminal activities from Nazi Germany.

Konzentrationslager Auschwitz consisted of several camps: the mother Auschwitz I in Oświęcim, Birkenau (Auschwitz II) in Brzezinka, Monowitz (Auschwitz III) in Monowice and nearly 40 smaller sub-camps. In the spring of 1942, the Nazis began to use deadly gas in Auschwitz: cyclone B.

Auschwitz I and Birkenau, the areas of which are open to the public, are 3.5 km apart. Auschwitz I, preserved almost in the same state in which the Nazis left it, is the main part of the tour. In the barracks, there are exhibitions about camp life and the extermination of prisoners. A railway ramp has been preserved in Brzezinka, where SS doctors carried out selections of arriving prisoners, also remains of gas chambers, crematoria, primitive barracks and kilometers of barbed wires.

Practical info

  • Areas and facilities of the former Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau camps are available to visitors. Visiting depends on the individual interests and needs of visitors, but you should assume that it will take about 3.5 hours.
  • The tour takes place only with a guide, and each visitor is provided with a headset to hear the guide well.
  • We suggest to wear comfortable shoes, because sightseeing requires a lot of walking and to take an umbrella / raincoat  in order to be prepared in case of rain (the majority of the tour will be an open-air). 
  • When being on the Museum area, you should behave with due seriousness and respect - it is forbidden to eat, smoke and loud behavior.
  • Visitors ought to wear clothing appropriate to the nature of the place.
  • It is not recommended that children under 14 visit the Museum.
  • The maximum size of backpacks or handbags brought into the Museum can not exceed dimensions: 30x20x10 cm (A4 size). Bigger belongings should be left in the bus or use the luggage storage located on the Museum grounds.
  • Taking photos on the grounds of the Museum is possible only in selected parts; photographing in the buildings with the use of  a flash is forbidden

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