1. Facing brutal truth of the Holocaust
Talking about the Holocaust, one can wonder how a man could ever come up with such an idea. Today, we have to live with the awareness that it’s a human being that is responsible for creating a place like Auschwitz. All the human achievements and values were subverted after the war happened. The cruel ideology of antisemitism was strong enough to cloud plenty of people and in the end, lead to Holocaust. Despite fast development of the mankind and numerous groundbreaking achievements, so many people dedicated themselves to killing others. There were many more places like this, however, Auschwitz is one of the biggest and most terrifying one in the history.
Although you’ve probably heard history about Auschwitz and Holocaust, a mere fact cannot match a visit in the place, where everything happened. Museum in Oswiecim will enhance your knowledge of history and make you aware of some very important issues. It is crucial to know the whole truth and share it with future generations. That is the aim of the museum as well and that’s why it offers many lectures for its visitors. There are different programs dedicated for various age groups, adjusted for their emotional state. It includes middle schools, upper-secondary schools and Universities. There are also programs and workshop dedicated to educators. Different professions, including lawyers, government officers or diplomats, can also find a special program for themselves. Auschwitz Museum has also online exhibitions, so you can go on virtual tour to Auschwitz (http://auschwitz.org/en/education). It organizes numerous international conferences and lectures that give the opportunity to important discussion about the Holocaust education. There are even post-graduate studies in museum, that aims at education about totalitarianism, Nazism and Holocaust.
2. Mental journey and test on emotions
Visiting Auschwitz Museum, you need to be aware of brutality and explicitness of the place. It’s not recommended to go there with children under the age of 14. For many people it can be strongly shocking, as they are not prepared for such experience. If you are sensitive to image of violence and cruelty, some exhibitions can be extremely horrifying for you. Even those who can confront with harsh and moving situation and keep their poker face, usually break down in Auschwitz museum. However, it is definitely worth to experience, even if it indicates strong and negative emotions.
On the other hand, visit in Auschwitz can give you pause for thought. Reflection about human misery and social injustice can make you realize some very important things. Even the extensive area of the camp makes you realize how huge project it was and how many people took their part in creating it. Millions of Nazism enthusiasts were convinced that it’s a right thing to liquidate all Jews as they are worse than humans. It can also make you reflect upon your own life and appreciate the freedom we have today.
3. One of the most popular museums in the world
What makes the Museum in Auschwitz so special? Despite its historical significance and rich collections, it is very well-prospering institution what makes it extremely popular across the world. Next to the main exhibition, there are many national exhibitions, organized by different countries. The idea is to spread the knowledge among nations, from where numerous people got to Auschwitz.
Visiting the museum, for sure you’ll see numerous groups, talking in many different languages. Since 2016, more than 2 million people have been visiting it each year. Don’t be afraid that you’ll be overwhelmed by loud and annoying tourists though. An area covered by the museum is almost 200 ha and all tours are very well organized. If you wish to visit the place by your own, you’re free to do that – exhibitions are well-posted, so you just need to follow the signs. However, if you would like to learn much more about the history of Auschwitz, the guide is a part and parcel.
You can also check their Facebook profile and be up to date with the latest events and plenty of interesting facts related to Auschwitz:
4. Discovering country with the past
Another good reason to visit Auschwitz is to see the beautiful Polish country. It is located in Central Europe and is very diverse – from beautiful coast by the Baltic sea, through picturesque lakes in Mazury, to amazing Tatra Mountains in the south. However, if you don’t have enough time to discover the whole country, there are many interesting spots near the museum as well. Auschwitz is situated in the south, in a proximity of mountains (about 1,5h ride) and so-called “winter capital of Poland”- Zakopane. It a paradise for winter sports lovers, as well as for hikers. Another prominent city in neighborhood is Krakow (70 km from Auschwitz), from where a number of Jews were deported to concentration camp, as it was a place of Jewish ghetto during the occupation time. You can visit Krakow either to see its unique monuments and amazing views or feel its inimitable atmosphere and to have fun.
If you like visiting historical places like castles, fortresses or monasteries, you won’t be bored in Poland. It’s a country with very rich history, as it went through many difficult events in the past. From the First Partitions in 1795, through many insurrections, to the era of world wars and post-war communism. It became an independent country only in 1989, after revolution. After many years of conflicts and wars, it has bounced back and became an international center and a developed market offering plenty attractions for visitors from around the world.
5. Auschwitz from Krakow airport
There are few options to get to Auschwitz directly from Krakow Airport or Katowice Airport. You can take either public bus, train, or taxi. However, the most popular and accessible route is the one from Krakow city center.
The cheapest option is to take a train departing from Krakow Main Station to Oswiecim. It is also the longest way (2 h ride).
Public buses depart from Krakow Main Station few times an hour and the ride takes around 1,5 h.
You can also go with a private tour that is the quickest and most comfortable option. It includes hotel pick-up and drop-off, as well as a guide. For more details check here: https://krakowdirect.com/auschwitz-tours/.
If you are travelling by your private car, there is paid parking lot within the area of the museum.