This morning, we woke up at our usual time, 6:30, and began a very long, adventurous day.
I was so excited to see that nalesniki was part of the continental breakfast this morning! It boded well for the rest of the day, that’s for sure.
Then, we all loaded up on the bus to tour more of Krakow. We first went to the Wawel Royal Castle, which had very intricate architecture. The castle grounds were absolutely beautiful.
We also went inside the accompanying Royal Cathedral. In the Royal Cathedral, we saw the tombs of many kings and religious noblemen. It was kind of creepy, but I guess it was cool at the same time.
We even got to go down into the crypt, which contained the tombs of the most recent Polish president and his wife, who were killed in a plane crash about five years ago, among others.
After that, we continued our tour through Krakow by walking the streets and getting to see the oldest university in Poland, Jagiellonian University. Our tour guide, Marta, even went to school there. In Poland, state schools are free of charge, but very competitive to get into good ones.
I didn’t really enjoy the tour as much. It was very hot out (even though we were freezing two days ago in Warsaw) and I wasn’t very interested in the sights we were seeing. There weren’t any antique buildings or beautiful sights. It just was not really my cup of tea.
Our tour ended back in the main square where mom and I did a little more shopping and ate lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe. I was dying for some real American food (especially some meat so I could get my protein in and keep my energy up!) so I ordered a sirloin and it tasted so good!
Almost as soon as we returned to our hotel, we had to leave again.
Uncle Ray, Katie, Uncle Stash, Aunt Lorraine, Mom, and I decided to do an optional tour to the Wieliczka Salt Mines nearby. Grandma and Grandpa opted out because the tour guide stressed that it would be a lot of walking and stairs and we had already walked a lot that morning.
The salt mines were pretty cool and had sculptures carved out of salt by the miners, which were incredible. There’s even a synagogue on the third level of the mine.
We went down three levels, about 130 meters, but the mine has a total of 9 levels
altogether. You could run your hand along the wall throughout the tour and then taste
your fingers and they would be salty!
I enjoyed the salt mine and thought it was really neat, but it wasn’t my favorite thing we’ve done. I prefer cave spelunking like my family has done in caves like Mammoth Caves.
This tour was also a heck of a lot of walking. My legs were aching and my feet were terribly sore by the time we got back to the bus. Grandma and Grandpa made the right choice by skipping out, but I had fun and I’m gad I did it.