Krakow, Poland: a medieval marvel.

If you are planning a short continental break you are no longer limited to a trip to Amsterdam, Paris or Rome. The onset of low-cost flights and the fall of the wall opened up a host of new eastern-European destinations full of history, local traditions and tempting cuisine.

Krakow, Poland’s fourth largest city, is one of them. Now well established as an important tourist destination, it has one of the best-preserved medieval city centres in Europe.

Unlike much of the rest of Poland, Krakow was largely undamaged by the Second World War, reports The Daily Mail. Its Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, its large market square dating back to 1257 and there are dozens of churches of architectural interest in and around the town.

Krakow is home to Poland’s oldest universtity and its 100,000 strong student population contributes to a vibrant nightlife in the cellar bars, a great place to escape the winter chill. In summer locals and tourists alike congregate in the numerous pavement cafés in the old town.

Not to be missed is the Kazimierz Jewish quarter. In part thanks to interest inspired by the film Schindler’s List, the area is undergoing a cultural renaissance, where you can enjoy Jewish cafes, galleries and kosher restaurants, and a Jewish cultural festival in early July.

Ryanair flies to Krakow from a number of UK destinations.

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