A Meaningful Experience In Krakow

This past weekend was one of my favorite weekends abroad so far. It was the weekend when CEA gave all the students the opportunity to travel to Krakow, Poland. After a long nine-hour bus ride, we made it to our eclectic hotel in the heart of Krakow’s city center. We had all night Thursday to have our first taste of traditional Polish food and of course I had to get perogies (stuffed dumplings). They were even better than I imagined they would be and I definitely ate perogies a few too many times over the weekend. I ended the night with my friends at a local pub where we met so many local Polish people our age.

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Dumplings filled with spinach and cheese

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This was from a 24 hour pierogi restaurant!

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Wood fire cooked dumplings

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These are filled with beef, potatoes, and cottage cheese

We got up Friday morning for a walking tour of the city. We visited the castle, the town square, and a few other important historical sites around town. After a break at lunch, we also had a tour of the old Jewish ghetto. The Jewish ghetto is now a trendy spot for tourists and locals to hang out and shop for antiques. We had Friday night free to explore more areas of town and I found myself again attracted to the restaurants in the main square. The bustling of excited tourists and vibrant markets makes the square an exciting place to be. The main market in the middle of the square is filled with about fifty different booths selling everything from slippers to Polish pottery to jewelry. After dinner, we found a café with live music that had everyone in the café dancing and singing.

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On our tour of the the Krakow palace

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The main town square

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The Krakow street markets!

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The Krakow Palace

Saturday was a really powerful experience for all of the students. We spent the day at the Auschwitz Concentration Camp in Poland. Our guided tour of both locations of the camp put in perspective the impact that time in history had on society. We had a first hand experience of all the original barracks and buildings. That day left everyone feeling somber and knowledgeable. We woke up Sunday morning and started our journey back to my favorite country, Prague!

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The execution wall at Auschwitz

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Pots and pans left behind by the Jews held captive at the camp

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The cattle wagon used to transport Jews to the camp

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The barracks where 700 people were held in each building

Lillian H. is the Spring 2017 MOJO Blogger in Prague, Czech Republic. She is currently a Junior studying Communications at University of Georgia.

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