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Why rent a car in Krakow?

Krakow is a city of large squares and stunning architecture. Medieval buildings line higgledy-piggledy old streets and tower above the squares, their domes and ornate spires thrusting skywards. Brightly coloured buildings of reds, yellows and greens make Krakow feel vibrant. It is a city with a haunting history but its future feels fun.

Situated in southern Poland, Krakow is on the E40 route, giving it great road links for the rest of the country and beyond. Get a hire car in Krakow and you can reach the Czech Republic or Slovakia in less than two hours.

How to get to and around Krakow?

Krakow Airport is 10 miles out of the city centre, while Warsaw Airport is a drive of about 180 miles.

What brands are available?

Sixt, Europcar and Avis are among a host of companies offering a rental car in Krakow. Eco company Green Motion, which provides lower-emission vehicles for hire, also operates here.

Must-sees within an easy drive of Krakow

Krakow is a forward-looking city. Cool bars and restaurants have opened on these old streets and the art galleries and shopping rival any capital. But for many visitors a trip to Krakow involves some looking back. Much of the city’s large Jewish population was wiped out by the Nazis during WWII. Oskar Schindler’s famous enamel factory is in the city and is now a museum covering the Nazi occupation. The Kazimierz district, Krakow’s Jewish quarter that was brought to life in Schindler’s List, is just across the Vistula river from the factory and the memorial and museum at Auschwitz is an hour’s drive of 40 miles.

An hour by car southwest of Krakow is Wadowice. This city is a fairly recent entry into the tourist books thanks to its most famous son - Pope John Paul II. There is a free tour book that guides visitors around the city’s various pope-related sites, including the Museum Family Home of the Holy Father. Bochnia is 30 minutes from Krakow and is also worth a visit. The town has old salt mines that are now listed as an Unesco World Heritage Site. Tourists can see where rock salt was mined from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century. There is also an underground boat trip through the mine’s briny waters.

Back in Krakow, make the most of having a car by driving out to some of the city’s surrounding towns. Skawina, 20 minutes by car from the city, is a picturesque town with an old market square and traditional historic churches. Wolbrom, a 45-minute drive of about 25 miles, is a residential area popular with commuters.

Tips and tricks for driving in Krakow

Drive on the right, overtake on the left and follow standard driving laws. Look out for trams, which are present in a number of Polish cities.

Ready to plan your Krakow city break?

Click on the Expedia search tool to start planning your trip to Krakow and other parts of Poland. It can help you find the best deals on flights, car hire and hotels, as well as the top attractions and activities.

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