advertisement

On Foot -- Much of Kraków's Old Town is off-limits to private cars, so walking is often the only option. Distances are manageable.

By Tram -- Kraków is well served by a comprehensive tram network, and this is a quick and easy way to reach more far-flung destinations (such as Nowa Huta). Try to avoid tram travel at rush hour unless you enjoy getting pressed up against the doors like you're in the Tokyo subway. A standard ticket costs 2.50 z (not valid for transfers) and can be bought at newspaper kiosks and ticketing machines located near tram stops. If you have to change trams or go from tram to bus, buy a 1-hour ticket for 3.10 z. Validate your ticket on entering the tram and hold on to it until the end of the ride.

By Bus -- Like trams, buses ply Kraków's streets from early morning until after 11pm or so, and are a vital part of the city's transit network. You probably won't need to use the buses unless your hotel is well outside the city center. A standard ticket (not valid for transfers) costs 2.50 z and can be bought at newspaper kiosks around town. Validate your ticket on entering the bus and hold on to it until the end of the ride.

By Taxi -- Taxis are a relatively cheap and dependable way of getting around. You can hail taxis directly on the street or at taxi stands around town. Dishonest drivers are rare but do crop up from time to time; to guarantee an honest driver, order a cab by telephone. Reliable firms include Radio Taxi (tel. 12/191-91) and Euro Taxi (tel. 12/196-64). The fare for a typical hop, such as from the Old Town to Kazimierz, will average about 15 z. Fares rise by 50% at night.

By Bike -- Biking is popular, and there are now bike lanes scattered around town, including a nice run along the Vistula river to the village of Tyniec (14km/8 3/4 miles) and through the park, the Planty, that rings the main square. That said, unless you're an experienced cyclist, biking is a better bet for an hour or two of sightseeing, rather than as a practical means for getting around (cycling along the busy, tram-clogged roads is simply too dangerous). Cruising Kraków (Basztowa 17; tel. 12/398-70-57 or 514/556-017; www.cruisingkrakow.com) offers fun and instructional 2-hour bike tours in season (May through September) in the afternoon and evening. They also rent bikes (starting at 30 z a day) and conduct longer trips in summer.

By Golf Cart -- Seeing the city via guided golf cart has become incredibly popular in recent years, and on some summer days, it seems there's an endless stream of carts parading around town. Golf-cart rides are undeniably cheesy but can be a lifesaver on hot days or if time is an issue. You'll find cart stands at popular tourist spots around town, including the main square, below Wawel Castle on Kanonicza, and on Szeroka in Kazimierz. Prices start around 80 z per person for relatively short circuits around either the Old Town or Kazimierz. Longer tours, combining both areas, are more expensive. Audio headphones provide guided commentary in several languages.

By Horse-Drawn Carriage -- Far more romantic than the tram and classier than a golf cart are the beautiful carriages that line up along the main square in Kraków's Old Town. Negotiate prices and routes individually with the driver, but expect to pay around 100 z for 30 minutes (not including tip). Most drivers can manage some English.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.