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World Heritage Site Auschwitz Birkenau German Nazi Concentration and Extermination Camp (1940-1945)

The fortified walls, barbed wire, platforms, barracks, gallows, gas chambers and cremation ovens show the conditions within which the Nazi genocide took place in the former concentration and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest in the Third Reich. According to historical investigations, 1.5 million people, among them a great number of Jews, were systematically starved, tortured and murdered in this camp, the symbol of humanity’s cruelty to its fellow human beings in the 20th century.

Criteria for inclusion as a World Heritage Site

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viTo be directly or tangibly associated with events or living traditions, with ideas, or with beliefs, with artistic and literary works of outstanding universal significance. (The Committee considers that this criterion should preferably be used in conjunction with other criteria). All
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Place
27.34km
Katowice
Atlas Obscura 2018
27.43km
Poland’s Iconic ‘Saucer’

Discover Spodek in Katowice, Poland: While the U.S. and Soviet Union were engaged in a space race, Poland built a UFO on the ground.

Atlas Obscura 2020
75.3km
Zegartowice Mushroom Rock

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Atlas Obscura 2021
116.01km
Rysy

Discover Rysy in Tatra County, Poland: The majority of the highest mountain in Poland is actually located in a different country.

Audio Guide
54.45km
Audio Guide
Urbirun Krakow – Highlights
en fr
Atlas Obscura 2016
63.85km
Kopiec Wandy (Wanda Mound)

Discover Kopiec Wandy (Wanda Mound) in Krakow, Poland: An artificial hill and apparent calendric structure built in the Early Middle Ages immortalizes a legendary Polish princess.

Brutalism
25.82km
Former Silesian Science Institute
Atlas Obscura 2022
54.39km
Art Nouveau Church (St. Francis’ Basilica)

Discover Art Nouveau Church (St. Francis' Basilica) in Kraków, Poland:.

Brutalism 1978
53.61km
Church of St. Jadwiga the Queen
Audio Guide
54.81km
Audio Guide
Krakow
en fr it pl
Atlas Obscura 2017
68.64km
A Science and Technology Park at Czechia’s Historic Industrial Site

The massive 1830s industrial site once known as the country's "Iron Heart" has been transformed.

World Heritage Site 1978
63.87km
Wieliczka and Bochnia Royal Salt Mines

The deposit of rock salt in Wieliczka and Bochnia has been mined since the 13th century. This major industrial undertaking has royal status and is the oldest of its type in Europe. The site is a serial property consisting of Wieliczka and Bochnia salt …

Atlas Obscura 2019
53.01km
Wojtek the Soldier Bear Statue

Discover Wojtek the Soldier Bear Statue in Krakow, Poland: A memorial to the beloved brown bear that served in the Polish army during World War II.

Atlas Obscura 2020
54.6km
Memorial to the Victims of Air Pollution

Discover Memorial to the Victims of Air Pollution in Kraków, Poland: Down this Cracovian street resides a plaque with a stark message about the city's air pollution.

Atlas Obscura 2019
56.55km
Kraków-Płaszów Concentration Camp

Discover Kraków-Płaszów Concentration Camp in Krakow, Poland: At first glance, this area seems like just another city park, but the lush landscape hides a dark past.

Atlas Obscura 2018
54.68km
St. Mary’s Basilica

Discover St. Mary's Basilica in Krakow, Poland: St. Mary's features one of the most spectacularly decorated cathedral interiors in all of Europe.

Atlas Obscura 2018
78.92km
Stará Bystrica Astronomical Clock

Discover Stará Bystrica Astronomical Clock in Stará Bystrica, Slovakia: The world's newest astronomical clock is also its most accurate.

Atlas Obscura 2019
41.96km
Poland’s Unusual Desert

People have rallied to save Błędów Desert from being reclaimed by the forest.

World Heritage Site 2008
82.87km
Wooden Churches of the Slovak part of the Carpathian Mountain Area

The Wooden Churches of the Slovak part of Carpathian Mountain Area inscribed on the World Heritage List consist of two Roman Catholic, three Protestant and three Greek Orthodox churches built between the 16th and 18th centuries. The property presen…

Atlas Obscura 2018
87.41km
The Real Site of Count Orlok’s Castle

The beautiful 700-year-old fortress where "Nosferatu" was filmed.

Audio Guide 2015
54.32km
Audio Guide
RenEU – Renaissance route in Malopolska
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Atlas Obscura 2022
54.28km
Dżok the Dog Monument

Discover Dżok the Dog Monument in Krakow, Poland: A statue commemorating a Polish dog who took his role as man's best friend very seriously.

World Heritage Site 1978
54.48km
Historic Centre of Kraków

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Audio Guide
54.98km
Audio Guide
So that memory doesn’t die
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Atlas Obscura 2016
99.47km
Old Zakopane Cemetery

Discover Old Zakopane Cemetery in Zakopane, Poland: Polish luminaries and masterful folk art find sanctuary in this unique cemetery.

Audio Guide
55.26km
Audio Guide
Centropa’s synagogue-tour of Krakow
en
World Heritage Site 2017
50.46km
Tarnowskie Góry Lead-Silver-Zinc Mine and its Underground Water Management System

Located in Upper Silesia, in southern Poland, one of the main mining areas of central Europe, the property includes the entire underground mine with adits, shafts, galleries and other features of the water management system. Most of the property is situ…

World Heritage Site 1999
40.05km
Kalwaria Zebrzydowska: the Mannerist Architectural and Park Landscape Complex and Pilgrimage Park

Kalwaria Zebrzydowska is a breathtaking cultural landscape of great spiritual significance. Its natural setting – in which a series of symbolic places of worship relating to the Passion of Jesus Christ and the life of the Virgin Mary was laid out at t…

Brutalism 1973
49.33km
Hotel of Polish Diaspora College, Jagiellonen University
Brutalism 1968
61.2km
Church of Our Lady the Queen of Poland
Place
55.05km
Kraków
Brutalism 1959
54.29km
Municipal Exhibition Pavilion (today: Bunkier Sztuki)
Brutalism 1978
54.37km
Hotel Forum
Atlas Obscura 2016
85.31km
Poland’s Cloud Demon Repelling Tower

Discover Zabytkowa Dzwonnica (Cloud Demon Repelling Tower) in Gmina, Poland: This tower in a small Polish village uses the power of a sacred bell to ward off mischievous weather spirits.

Atlas Obscura 2019
54.77km
Statue of Jan Matejko

Discover Statue of Jan Matejko in Krakow, Poland: Extremely famous in his native country, this Cracovian painter is all but unknown beyond Polish borders.

Atlas Obscura 2018
54.39km
Wawel Chakra

Discover Wawel Chakra in Krakow, Poland: This grubby wall is said to be one of the Earth's esoteric energy centers.