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25th Jewish Culture Festival in Kraków

A jubilee edition of the 25th Jewish Culture Festival in Kraków began on Thursday, bringing thousands of visitors to the city.

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This year’s edition will see as many as 300 events, led by artists and speakers from countries including Israel, the US, Hungary, Germany, Austria and Poland.

Concerts, lectures, workshops, exhibitions, guided tours and film screenings (among the latter special showings of Oscar-winning Polish movie ‘Ida’) are all in store.

The programme is divided into four sections: Classic, Off (Offbeat), Ideas and Art.

This year, organisers are placing a special emphasis on Kraków’s Kazimierz quarter, the district that for many centuries was the centre of Jewish life in the city.

As always, the ‘Shalom on Szeroka’ open-air concert will help wrap up the festival on Saturday 4 July, although there will also be some events on Sunday 5 July.

For the full programme, see the festival’s official Jewish Cultural festival website.

June 26, 2015 Posted by | Events, Krakow Travel Advice, News | , , , , | Leave a comment

British teenagers released after Auschwitz theft apology

Two British teenagers have “apologised unreservedly” for “picking up items without thinking” from the former Auschwitz death camp, their Cambridge school says.

The Perse School says the 17-year-old boys “attempted to keep some items which they had found on the ground”.

They were detained at the site on Monday and released with suspended prison sentences on Tuesday.

Polish police said the boys denied any wrongdoing, and were spared a fine.

The teenagers were charged with unlawfully possessing items of special cultural importance, which carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence. They were not made to pay a fine because they were not in employment.

The BBC’s Adam Easton in Warsaw said that, as with similar cases in the past, the boys were given suspended prison sentences and released.

“Incidents like this happen about once or twice a year, museum staff said, despite the fact notices warn visitors not to pick anything up.”

via British teenagers released after Auschwitz theft apology – BBC News.

June 23, 2015 Posted by | Auschwitz | Leave a comment

Kraków edition of Monopoly in the pipeline

A Kraków edition of the classic game Monopoly is due to be released this autumn, and the most expensive and cheapest properties have already been decided in a public vote.11043409_946767118675102_9127463680525827262_o

Over the last few days, listeners of Radio Kraków and readers of Gazeta Wyborcza were given the opportunity to vote for the best and worst properties respectively.
Radio Kraków listeners voted overwhelmingly in favour of the Wawel citadel as the top property (62 percent), while Gazeta Wyborczareaders picked Stalinist-era settlement Nowa Huta as bottom of the heap (35 percent).Runners-up for best property included the Main Market Square (16 percent) and Floriańska Street (7 percent), while at the other end of the spectrum, the Podgórze district (18 percent) came in second behind Nowa Huta.Peculiarly, although Podgórze was considered to be beyond the pale by many of the city’s inhabitants until recent years, the once down-at-heel district is now among the city’s most fashionable.

The first Warsaw edition of Monopoly was released in 1992, and Gdańsk was given its own version in November 2014. Kraków joins the group 80 years after the first ever edition was released in the US in 1935, when Atlantic City served as the prototype.

June 15, 2015 Posted by | News | , , , | Leave a comment

‘Dark tourism’ to ‘death sites’ like Auschwitz

Why are we so fascinated by Auschwitz? ‘Dark tourism’ to ‘death sites’ helps us deal with our mortality, study reveals

Researchers conducted interviews at ‘dystopian dark tourist’ spots

These include Charles Manson ‘Helter Skelter’ tour and H.R Giger Museum

Study suggest people find it easier to deal with death the more they see it

And by attempting to understand why people kill can help tourists feel more secure about death and violence

via ‘Dark tourism’ to ‘death sites’ like Auschwitz helps us deal with mortality | Daily Mail Online.

June 10, 2015 Posted by | News | , , | Leave a comment

Jeb Bush Tours Auschwitz

Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush made an unannounced stop in Krakow on Wednesday to tour the Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland.

Bush toured the camp with wife, Columba, Bloomberg confirmed. He didn’t invite the roughly 10 reporters from the U.S. and Europe following the former Florida governor on his five-day, three-country tour, out of respect for the site and those affected, a Bush aide said.

More than 1 million people, mostly Jewish prisoners, died at the camp during World War II.

Bush, who is expected to announce his plans to run for president on Monday in Miami, also has plans to meet top political leaders in each of the three countries he’s visiting.

In Poland on Thursday, Bush will meet with President Bronisław Komorowski; the newly elected president, Andrzej Duda; Radek Sikorski, the head of the lower house of the Polish parliament; and Polish Foreign Minister Grzegorz Schetyna.

via Jeb Bush Tours Auschwitz – Bloomberg Politics.

June 10, 2015 Posted by | Auschwitz, News | , , , | Leave a comment

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June 8, 2015 Posted by | Krakow Travel Advice | , , , | Leave a comment

Six of the most audacious prison escapes ever

5. The life-saving escapee

Alfréd Wetzler’s escape from Nazi death camp Auschwitz is possibly the most important prison escape in history.

Wetzler, a Slovakian jew, escaped from Auschwitz with fellow inmate Rudolf Vrba in April 1944 by hiding in a wood pile that other inmates soaked with tobacco and gasoline to fool guard dogs.

After four nights hiding among the wood, the two men donned stolen suits and overcoats and began a 80 mile journey to the Polish border with Slovakia.

In his pockets, Wetzler carried a report on the inner workings of the death camp, including a ground plan, details of the gas chambers, and a label from a canister of Zyklon B – the gas that the Nazi’s used to kill millions of inmates. It was the first detailed report about Auschwitz that the Allies regarded as credible, and led to the bombing of buildings that housed Nazi officials who dealt with the railway deportations.

120,000 Hungarian Jews are said to have been saved as a result.

via Six of the most audacious prison escapes ever – Telegraph.

June 8, 2015 Posted by | Auschwitz, Events | Leave a comment

Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence

Tripadvisor certificate of excellence

Krakow Tours 2015

CoE 2015

June 2, 2015 Posted by | News | , , , | Leave a comment

Rudolph Hoess’ daughter and her life near Auschwitz.

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‘My beautiful Auschwitz childhood’: Daughter of camp commandant Rudolph Hoess describes life growing up next to a concentration camp – and how she has hidden her identity for decades

Ingebirgitt Hannah Hoess was six when father Rudolf headed Auschwitz

Had a ‘beautiful childhood’ while Holocaust happened beyond garden wall

At least 1.2million Jews were murdered at infamous death camp in Poland

Claims she didn’t know about deaths and lived under an assumed name

Suffers from headaches – as her father did – when she thinks of Holocaust

The daughter of Nazi death camp commander Rudolf Hoess has broken decades of silence and spoken of having to accept and conceal that her father was one of history’s most prolific mass murderers.

via Rudolph Hoess’ daughter Ingebirgitt talks of life near Auschwitz concentration camp | Daily Mail Online.

June 1, 2015 Posted by | Auschwitz | , | Leave a comment

   

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