Town Hall - Ratusz, Krakow

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  • Pawtuxet's Profile Photo

    Ratusz ~ The old Town Hall

    by Pawtuxet Updated Jul 7, 2009

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    The old Town Hall which dates to the 14th century is partially lost, but the tower remains standing and is a dramatic element of the Krakow skyline. There is a museum in the basement of the tower, altho I still haven't seen it in all my visits to this wonderful city. Seen here against a stormy sky, it is a back drop for many visiting photographers. This is where you will see the ancient stone lions which guard the entrance.

    From an earlier trip:
    Matcrazy1 took this photo when Gosia and I met Matt and his lovely wife, Urzula in Krakow one evening. It was bitter cold that night, but the square is always a wonderful place to be ... day or night. Activity. . . people walking....shopping....the teens going in and out of the Internet Cafe...restaurants, bars, clubs, coffee cafes...and outdoor art. The lions are centuries old, but there was also a modern sculpture exhibit scattered all around the square.

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  • kentishgirl's Profile Photo

    Town Hall Tower

    by kentishgirl Updated Oct 27, 2004

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    I never actually took the opportunity to go up into the Town Hall tower, but I can only imagine at how wonderful the views of the city must be from up there!

    The Town hall itself was demolished in 1817-1820 and all that is left is the tower and cellars.

    The tower now contains part of Krakows historical museum.*

    Krakow Town Hall Towe
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    Standing Alone But Proud

    by tpal Updated Feb 2, 2005

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    The nineteenth century seems to have been a little tough on Krakow. Most of the Old Town's walls and gate fortifications were removed, the Cloth Hall was turned into a wedding cake and the original 14th century Town Hall was demolished. Fortunately the Town Hall Tower was retained although it looks a little lonely. Architecturally, it is one of the jewels of the square.

    Old Town Hall Tower

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  • ginte's Profile Photo

    Town Hall

    by ginte Updated Oct 24, 2004

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    The tall Gothic tower that stands alone beside the Cloth Hall seems slightly out of place. There is good reason for this - it is all that remains of what used to be the Town Hall.

    Believe it or not, the Krakow leaders (in their wisdom) decided to pull down the ancient Town Hall (this tragically misguided project occurred in the 1820's) in order to improve the square! The tower however, was allowed to remain standing

    Vast cellars under the Town Hall Tower used to contain the city dungeon with a torture chamber as well as a popular beerhouse, and now they have been turned into a cafe and a theater.

    Those who are ready to climb the tower up its 100-step narrow and steep stairs can enjoy the panoramic view from the top. Also you can see the exhibition of the City of Krakow Historical Museum pertaining to the history of the municipality.

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  • jumpingnorman's Profile Photo

    Maybe Go UP The Clock Tower in Krakow Square!

    by jumpingnorman Updated Feb 9, 2009

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    Look for the clock tower at the Market Suare in Krakow which is often mistaken as a church. It is also known as the Town Hall Tower and is the only remaining part of the Town Hall which went down in 1820.

    It is said that the cellar used to house a prison, but now is home to a theatre and a bar. Bars are aplenty in Krakow as the locals and tourists seem to love to party.

    While I was there, I just took pictures of the Clock Tower. But apparently, you can also go up and have a panoramic view of the city. Well, maybe I’ll do that next time then…

    Clock Tower, Market Square, Krakow, Poland
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  • naruto's Profile Photo

    Town Hall Tower

    by naruto Written Sep 20, 2004

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    The Town Hall Tower stands beside the Cloth Hall in the middle of Rynek Glowny. It is about 70 meters tall, and is apparently Krakow's very own "Leaning Tower of Pisa".

    It is currently leaning at 55cm, caused by a strong wind that blew all the way back in the year of 1703.

    It is called the Town Hall Tower because it used to stood next to the splendid old Town Hall that was demolished in the early part of the 19th century.

    Under the Town Hall Tower, there are cellars that used to contain the city dungeon with a torture chamber as well as a popular beerhouse. These had been turned into a cafe and a theater. Visitors ready to climb the tower up its 100-step narrow and steep stairs can enjoy the panoramic view from the top.

    Town Hall Tower
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  • luigi_pl's Profile Photo

    Tower in heart of Krakow.

    by luigi_pl Updated Apr 30, 2005

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    This is a remnant of a former medieval town hall. First building was built in XIII century, in 1383. A long time ago many parts of the Town Hall were destroyed by Austrian Occupants. In the basement was located Swidnicka Cellar, were the best beer in Krakow was served, and in the next room was the chamber of tortures, prison and interrogationing room. Yep! Very Nice!!! Now there is a theatre (I mean in the basement) called Scena pod Ratuszem. Around The Town Hall is situated restaurant (or something like that) when You can taste beer. You can also climb on te top of the hall and enjoy view of Krakow. It is worth seeing. I recommand it very much.

    The Town Hall
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  • Raimix's Profile Photo

    Town Hall building

    by Raimix Updated Sep 8, 2006

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    Town Hall was built in end of 13th century, but later heightened in 1685. Actually it is even not all town hall, but only town hall tower. Another interesting thing, that his tower is leaning about 50 cm after very big wind in 1703. It houses City of Krakow Historical museum and theater as well.

    Nearby the building it is interesting sculture placed - big man's head, lying on pavement. That head is so big, it is possible to go inside of it and make nice photos.

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  • Skeptic-jr's Profile Photo

    Town Hall

    by Skeptic-jr Written Sep 27, 2003

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    Actually it is only a little part of the old Town Hall, its alone Gothic tower dominating the Main Market Square.

    Inside the brach of the city's historic museum and the theatral scene. Underground (and around) the pub/cafe.

    Town Hall's Tower
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  • Skeptic-jr's Profile Photo

    Two lions

    by Skeptic-jr Written Sep 27, 2003

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    At the present at the front of the Town Hall's tower two stony lions keep the guard - one looks really dangerous, another seems to be smily and sleepy. Both date back to the beginning of the 19the century.

    Hall Town's Guardians
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  • Durfun's Profile Photo

    The Visible Town Hall

    by Durfun Updated Jan 5, 2006

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    This is quite a visible landmark, standing proudly at the left on the Market Square.

    When we'd come here, there were huge portraits of the deceased Pope across it's faces.

    Thus, one was clearly reminded of the gravity of the circumstances, and the Pope's high profile.

    The Town Hall A Closer Look, Pope's picture hanging on it
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  • doogienj's Profile Photo

    Market Square - Townhall tower

    by doogienj Written Apr 14, 2005

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    All that was saved when the townhall burnt down was the tower itself. It looks kind of funny standing by itself without a building attached to it.

    One can climb the tower for a better view of the square. By the time it was finally open on Monday (closed for weekend due the Pope's death), my legs were too tired for the climb.

    Townhall tower
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  • call_me_rhia's Profile Photo

    Wieza Ratuszowa

    by call_me_rhia Updated Sep 19, 2003

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    Wieza Ratuszowa - the clock tower. This Tower belongs to the Town Hall, although it is not attached to it. It is a very old one since it dates back to the 15th century. The old Town Hall was attached to it, but it was dismantelled in the early 19th century. The tower is the only remaining part of it. I found it very useful as a landmark: whenever I was lost, I tried locating it to find my way back to the Rynek.

    the tower

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  • queensali's Profile Photo

    Town Hall Tower

    by queensali Written Apr 27, 2004

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    Krakow has its own leaning tower. In fact, the 70-m-tall Town Hall Tower at the city`s central Grand Square leans just 55 cm. Yet the reason is unusual - a strong wind did it in 1703. The massive Gothic tower had been built of stone and brick by the end of the 13th century and got its first clock in 1524. Several fires weakened the Town Hall Tower during the ensuing 150 years, so its west wall has been supported since 1680 by a mammoth buttress reaching up to the third floor. In 1685 the Town Hall Tower was heightened for 6.5 m. Its present baroque roof dates back to 1686. The tower once adjoined Krakow's splendid 13th-century Gothic Town Hall that was pulled down in the 1820s. Vast cellars under the Town Hall Tower used to contain the city dungeon with a torture chamber as well as a popular beerhouse, and now they have been turned into a cafe and a theater. Visitors ready to climb the tower up its 100-step narrow and steep stairs can enjoy the panoramic view from the top. They may also see the exhibition of the City of Krakow Historical Museum pertaining to the history of the municipality

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  • GentleSpirit's Profile Photo

    Town Hall Tower

    by GentleSpirit Updated May 23, 2013

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    This was part of the large Town Hall that used to be on the Rynek that the Austrians destroyed when they took over in the 19th century.

    The town hall tower, which is 70 meters high, was said to have been started in the 13th century. At the time it was right next to the gothic Town Hall, which was subsequently torn down in 1820. The tower has remained. Where the basements under the tower used to contain the cities' dungeons and torture chambers it now contains a cafe and theater.

    You can go up and I'm told the view is great. I'm not sure that it is open consistently though.

    Town Hall Tower
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