In December 2004 I went from Krakow on a daytrip to Zakopane by bus. Krakow's bus station (Dworzec Autobusowy) is located just next to the railway station. It is served by various bus companies like PKS, Szwagropol and Trans-Frej. Tickets for PKS are available from the driver, at the bus station or the ticket booths.
Wieliczka Salt Mine, few kilometers outside Krakow are visited by millions of visitors every year! If you are in the city, the cheaper and easy way to get them is to take the n. 304 bus from from Dworzec Glowny Zachod. There's an easy bus stop close to Bagatela Teatr on Juliana Dunajewskiego street.
In less than 30 minutes, with 3.20 Zloty you can reach Wieliczka Salt Mine. Get off at Wieliczka Cmentarz, take a descent on your right, cross the rails and in few minutes walking you get the Salt Mine.
Bus is the best way to go from Krakow airport to the town centre. From the international Airport just outside on the right (after a hairpin bend) you can take bus number 292 or 208; with few Zloty (3.20 for a single trip, about 0.80 euros) you can reach the bus stop Cracow about 20 minutes.
Most of the buses and trams pass through the downtown area close to the Railway station.Tickets on trams and buses are the same with the exception of the Airport bus (292) which charges an extra 30 gr. being 9km distant. A single fare (normalny)costs 2.50 (PLN) while a 24 hour ticket cost 10.40 (PLN) There are student prices as well as 7day tickets. One can purchase tickets from the numerous kiosks around the city or pay on the bus. There is a ticket machine in the centre of the bus which dispenses tickets (service in English) this takes coins ONLY after purchase stamp the ticket in the yellow machine close by. Inspectors randomly check buses but the system seems to work quite well. City trams and buses are blue while out of town/suburban buses are yellow. At intervals around town there are ticket machine that offer service in English and German and will take paper money (PLN) Beware of theft though as the sign warns you prior to payment. On the trams one must have the ticket ready to stamp prior to boarding as machines are NOT provided. each bus/tram stop shows the bus number and direction
Kraków has a good system of transportation by bus. The yellow coloured busses are operated by MPK, Miejskie Przedsiêbiorstwo Komunikacyjne S.A.
Busses to other towns have different colours (blue in most cases).
Tickets can be bought at kiosks, ticket machines and MPK ticket offices.
Single trip - PLN 2.50
Night ticket - PLN 2.50
Group of up to 15 people - PLN 21.00
Group of up to 20 people - PLN 24.00
One hour pass - PLN 3.10 (no luggage rate)
24-hour pass - PLN 10.40 (no luggage rate)
48-hour pass - PLN 18.80 (no luggage rate)
72-hour pass - PLN 25.00 (no luggage rate)
After collecting our luggage, (we arrived at the Domestic Airport Terminal D - Balice), we walked through the doors to the parking area, where there was a STOP for the FREE BLUE AIRPORT SHUTTLE BUS. There was plenty of room for our luggage. The Shuttle took us to the Train Stop where we would get the "BALICE EXPRESS" train, which would take us to Krakow Main Train Station. It's a great service, as it's quite a walk to the Train Stop esp. lugging your luggage around.
Buses in Krakow seem easy to use, wide-ranging and frequent. You can get tickets from newsagents (usually kiosks) but you can also pay the driver; this adds a little extra to the ticket price but saves the hassle of trying to find a newsagent if you are not boarding at a terminus (these seem to be dotted around the city). Timetables and names of designated stops are displayed at bus stops.
I really enjoyed my bus journeys because it's an excellent way of seeing ordinary places, and ordinary people. Be warned though: you'll have to buy two tickets if you are taking a large piece of luggage or you risk being fined by the inspectors who board buses regularly.
Arriving at the bus station, the way to the old town is to follow the underpass underneath the rail tracks to the front of the train station.
From there take an underpass under the road and then you would be within Planty Park and the old town beyond.
Allow a minimum 20 min to get to/from the town square to the bus station. Further than you think, especially with a full back pack. I should not have had that extra cake, the wodka had no effect of course.
I must say that Krakow has a very good
public transport system. I wonder how many
cities in the USA of a similar size can boast
such a well functioning system?
I'm used to being spoilt for good transport
after living in Stockholm, London and Budapest
where one takes getting about after midnight
as not a problem or expensive.
Also very safe (well London is a bit dodgy these days).
But don't abuse the system and purchase tickets
beforehand in the daytime. Be prepared.
Night bus is NOCNEJ AUTOBUS...I think...pronounce noch ney ow to bus..
but I'm sure a Pole could correct me.
I had a quite bad accident when coming back from the main market square
and slipped on the icy cobbled streets, I couldn't walk and was in agony,
ironic thinking I came to visit my father who was having an
orthopedic problem. Well I remember there were buses running
to almost everywhere and took one to a chemist open late a few streets
When I stayed in Krakow for a week in a very
cold and snowy February 2005 to visit my
father who was having a hip replacement
operation, we had to travel from the centre
of the city out to the private hospital
close to the airport and zoo. So I found
the bus service to be very good and on time.
MPK (Miejskie Przedsiebiorstwo Komunikacyjne S.A.), maintains 130 day bus lines
totaling about 650 kilometers. Which when you think about it, no small feat.
In daytime the municipal buses are supplemented with minibus services
provided by numerous independent operators not included in the above map
From the bus station outside the main train station there are buses
leaving to many destinations and even tourist buses run by private
companies to nearby tourist attractions.
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