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Orbis Travel files for bankruptcy

KRAKOW TOURS– Poland’s oldest travel bureau Orbis Travel (or PBP Orbis), currently owned by Enterprise Investors fund, filed for bankruptcy yesterday after Enterprise refused to grant the company a capital injection.

“The immediate cause of this situation is the fact that the majority shareholder, Enterprise Investors, decided it could not continue to provide funding for PBP Orbis and informed the management board of this on 14 September,” reads a statement by the company.

The company cancelled all tourist events previously planned and declared that the insurance policy for some 6 million zlotys will cover all expenses connected with return of 1,049 Orbis Travel clients from abroad.

Founded in Lviv in 1920, Orbis Travel was one of Poland’s biggest travel agencies, servicing more than a million clients annually.
In March 2010 PBP Orbis was sold by Orbis SA to Central European Tour Operator (owned by Enterprise Investors fund).

Orbis SA, listed hotel operator, has identified 13.64 million zlotys in potential risks related to the motion for insolvency filed by its former unit, to which Orbis had granted a 7.64 million zlotys loan and a 6 million zlotys guarantee, the firm warned in a market filing.

Orbis terminated a license agreement on the use of Orbis Travel brand by the former unit immediately after obtaining information about the insolvency motion, the firm also said.

Krakow Tours has heard that whilst an insurance policy will cover those tourists stranded abroad, and vouchers issued by Orbis offices will be honoured whilst on holiday, the many hundreds of customers who have made, and paid for, trips whilst touring in Poland via the internet, will lose their money and their bookings.

September 30, 2010 Posted by | Krakow Travel Advice, News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Survivor of Auschwitz and Family Stirs Controversy in Poland

KRAKOW TOURS – Adolek Kohn, an 89-year-old survivor of the Holocaust, has stirred up quite a controversy by dancing on what could have been his grave.

In a video (see below) that had become quite popular on YouTube, the Australian grandfather is shown dancing to Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive” with his daughter and grandchildren in several former Nazi concentration camps in Poland and Germany, including Auschwitz.

September 30, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Holocaust denier David Irving watched closely at Auschwitz.

Controversial British historian David Irving wants to lead a tour of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi death camp site but the museum says he will not be allowed to do so.

Imprisoned by Austria in 2006 for Holocaust denial, the historian started a tour around Poland this week with a group of people from the US and Australia and wants to present his, revisionist, interpretation of World War II history.

Irving, the author of several books which question elements of established Holocaust history, has claimed that much of what visitors to Auschwitz see today is a “reconstruction” and a Polish “money making machine”.

Though his original itinerary did not include the most infamous site of the Holocaust, the 72 year-old Irving has confirmed that he intends to  lead his tour party around the Auschwitz Nazi death camp.

Irving will probably arrive at Auschwitz on 30 September but has not informed the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum about the visit. The museum says it will not be allowing him to lead a tour as he is not a bona fide qualified guide, however.

“David Irving cannot lead a tour group at Auschwitz because he is not licensed,” said director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum Bartosz Bartyzel.

“He can visit the museum, like anyone else, but we will watch him closely and if he starts telling lies about the Holocaust, we will take action,” Bartyzel assured.

The director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum admitted, however, that it will be difficult to establish if a person who heads a group serves as a guide, or is just a group member.

“If I’m refused the right to enter a concentration camp or if I’m forced out, it will be methods such as the Nazi used,” David Irving told Italian daily Corriere della Sera after officials at the former Treblinka death camp announced that they will not let the British historian enter.

Irving’s tour has angered Poland’s small Jewish community. “Mr Irving is not a historian but a charlatan and a vicious liar,” said Chief Rabbi Michael Schudrich.

Poland’s Institute of National Remembrance (IPN) says that it is following Irving’s steps in Poland to make sure he does not commit another “Holocaust related crime”. “We know where he is, what he’s doing and what he’s saying,” assured Marcin Golebiewicz from IPN.

Denying facts about the Holocaust is punishable by up to three years in prison in Poland.

September 23, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments video


September 18, 2010 Posted by | Tour Information | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Holocaust denier to lead tours to Auschwitz and Treblinka

NOT KRAKOW TOURS – The Nigdy Więcej (Never Again) anti-racist organisation have called for ‘Holocaust denier’ British historian David Irving to be banned from entering Poland later this month.

Starting September 27, Irving is leading a tour party, with tickets costing around 1,500 euros each, taking in sites including the Treblinka death camp, Warsaw Ghetto and Hitler’s Bunker in the Masurian lake district.

Never Again, in a joint statement with the UK based Searchlight magazine, have called for Irving and his tour party – which he claims is sold out – not to be let into Poland.

“We urge Polish and British authorities to react strongly and not allow this shameful visit which offends the memory of victims of the war and the Holocaust,” says the Never Again statement.

“The group will mainly consist of Holocaust deniers and neo-Nazis from the UK and other Western Europe countries and the United States,” the statement adds.


No protests against the visit have yet come to the notice of the police. “We have not yet received any information about demonstrations and assembly connected with Irving’s visit,” said Warsaw police spokesman Mariusz Sokolowski .

“We have also not receive any information from Mr Irving that he felt threatened,” Sokolowski told the PAP news agency, noting that police have no responsibility for the security of private visits.

Irving has dismissed protests against his visit. He told the Daily Mail that his tour party was for “real history buffs”, and that it was the Polish authorities who had turned the Auschwitz Nazi death camp site into a “Disney-style” tourist trap and a “money making machine”. Irving went on to accuse Polish authorities of neglecting other less “marketable,” more authentic death camps, which “don’t have a Holiday Inn down the road,” in favor of Auschwitz.

He also accused Poland of erecting watch towers in Auschwitz that were not there during WW II, to make the place feel more authentic. “I have been a historian for 40 years. I know a fake when I see one. When you look at old photos of Auschwitz, those towers aren’t in the photographs,” he said.

Irving was arrested and imprisoned in 2006 when he visited Austria, where Holocaust denial is a crime.

Andrzej Arseniuk, spokesman for Poland’s National Remembrance Institute  – which investigates and prosecutes Nazi and communist-era crimes – said that they would take appropriate action if Irving publicly denies Nazi crimes. If incidents come to the attention of the law then “the prosecutor has the authority to deal with it,” Arseniuk said.

September 16, 2010 Posted by | Krakow Travel Advice, News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Roman Polanski, escapee from the Krakow Ghetto.

KRAKOW TOURSHere is an in depth review of the life and career of Roman Polanski, a survivor of the Krakow Ghetto during the nazi occupation of 1939-44. He lost close family in the Auschwitz and Birkenhau death camps, but managed to forge himself a remarkable but controversial life and career.

Appraising Polanski Reflecting on the career of filmmaker Roman Polanski Few filmmakers have actually lived lives of controversy and drama that threaten to eclipse what they have depicted on screen, as has Roman Polanski. The infamous filmmaker has experienced incredible extremes of success and tragedy in his life. He has made several highly acclaimed films including the … Read More

via Cinema Autopsy

September 9, 2010 Posted by | Events, News | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Krakow’s gone to the Dogs

KRAKOW TOURS – Krakow went to the dogs in the best possible way this weekend, as an army of dachshunds descended on the city centre. The dogs – and their owners – were marched from the Barbakan, along Floriańska to the Market Square at noon on Sunday. The march was led by a brass band and flag-bearers. 
Animal lovers ignored the light drizzle to line the route, and gathered in the square to meet the pampered pooches. There were even a few interlopers from other breeds, come to pay their respects.

The Dachshund March, or Marsz Jamników, has been held annually in Krakow for the past 15 years. This year’s theme was the Battle of Grunwald, to commemorate the 600th anniversary of the decisive victory. The dogs arrived dressed in various costumes, or au naturelle to show off their sleek forms.

September 7, 2010 Posted by | Events, News | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Poland medical tourism, his and her implants!!!

KRAKOW TOURS – Patients from the UK and western Europe are looking to Poland for dental work and medical treatment at prices they find extremely competitive.

According to the Chamber of Commercial Medical Tourism, in the first half of this year 120,000 foreign patients spent over 125 million euro at Polish clinics.

Each medical tourist spent on average 1,000 euros on treatment.

Foreigners decide to undergo treatment in Poland because it is much cheaper than in their home country, especially when it comes to plastic surgery and dentistry. Patients from the UK who need a tooth implant pay 1,500 euro for it at home but only 500 euro in Poland. Short waiting time and high quality of service are also the advantages of Polish medical service.

That gives me some ideas for new KRAKOW TOURS

September 2, 2010 Posted by | News, Tour Information | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment


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