Brilliant tour thank you
Excellent tour! The knowledge of the tour guide was fantastic. Would recommend to friends
well organised - prompt pickup at hotel on each occasion. Guides were knowledgeable and the tours were handled appropriately. Would recommend these tours.
It was a hot day when we took the tour. Other than that it was a great tour. Seeing the different places in Auschwitz-Birkenau was an eye opener and learning what took place gave greater understanding of that period of time . It was well worth it. There was quite of walking and because it was hot my wife sat out the Birkenau section.
Auschwitz is a mandatory experience for everyone, regardless of the tour package or guide. Unfortunately the weather was not cooperative that day, though seemingly appropriate considering the import of the place. The guides at the camps were adequate, but I sense they were limited due to the weather. The guide on the bus, however, was extremely helpful and accommodating, even chartering a cab to take me back to the hostel so I could stay out of the rain; I was able to end this momentous tour on a smile.
Judy and Peter
We took this as the double package over two days and I’m afraid it is very difficult to give an overall rating. First, the positive. Our tours of Auschwitz and Birkenau with Lukas were excellent. He has a genuine and personal interest and is very knowledgeable. He also speaks near-perfect English and I think we were lucky to have him as our guide. Five stars, Lukas, keep up the good work. Be prepared for a very emotional reaction to some of the things you will see.
Now the negatives. First, the salt mine. If you want to learn about the history of the mine, the different tools and mining techniques used over the centuries, etc, then don’t waste your time going here. It’s all glitz and bling and “look at the clever things carved out of salt”, silly light shows, music, etc. Half a day of my life I’ll never get back. Also, a warning to those who have mobility issues – you descend 800 steps (in stages) into the mine and cover an additional walking distance of 2 kilometres. Fine for us, but others struggled. You come back up in an elevator into which you are tightly – and I do mean tightly – packed.
I wouldn’t touch the tour organizers again with a 20 foot barge pole. First day, they over booked the tour and my husband had to sit at the front of the bus with the tour guide while I sat in the back. On the second day, they were 25 minutes late picking us up, separate seats again, then the driver was speeding and driving recklessly, presumably trying to make up for lost time. But all he achieved was to make his passengers nervous and uncomfortable. Don’t be fooled by the bit that says, “you’ll be picked up by a mini-bus”. Sure, you go in a mini-bus, but when you arrive at the destination, your group is blended with those from two other mini-buses so that you become a very large group. As a result it can be very difficult to see the things your guide is trying to tell you about.
I wish I could rate the two tours separately because Auschwitz deserves 5 stars and Wieliczka deserves 2 (unless you enjoy activities that have been overly exploited by tourism, then it also deserves 5 stars)
Auschwitz tour was well run and the tour guide was very knowledgeable and friendly. Did not feel bored or underwhelmed at any moment of the tour even when we had to wait in a staging area before going to the next room. She had so many facts and stories to make sure that we got everything out of the tour we could. Very highly recommended. You could do Auschwitz on your own but you would miss out on so much information without the guide!
Now on to Wieliczka aka the longest Disney queue with a mine shaft elevator ride at the end. I was looking forward to seeing the salt mines in its original condition and the only place I got to see that was at the very end, in the hallway leading to the elevator which isn't even a part of the tour! The rest of the mine has been overcommercialized and it is truly a tourist attraction with moving animated rooms and a laser light show. Would have rather spend my time and money on something more authentic.
Excellent tour - although difficult to see and comprehend. The tour guide was respectful and very knowledgeable. All went smoothly
Doing what: Auschwitz-Birkenau Small-Group Tour from Krakow
A experience not to be missed. No religious reason for going on this trip more out of being so close and wanting to know what happened. Excellent from start to finish - efficient pickup from our hotel in a new mini bus pleasant drive to the first camp which took about 1.5 hours plus a video on the coach explaining what actually happened - a sobering introduction. Our guide Monica was quite brilliant giving an ongoing explanation of the facts and what happened in a passionate way having the experience of her grandfather being held himself in a concentration camp. Plenty of time to look around and ask question and to feel the cruelty of what took place. A long day, quite physical in walking round the camps in hot conditions. Comfortable shoes and bottled water a must.
Our tour guide at both Auschwitz and Birkenau was superb. She was very knowledgeable and covered as much as she could in the time that we had with the size group we had. This is obviously a very moving experience but definitely something that should be on your must-do list.
FYI, if you sign up for hotel pickup be prepared as they will pick you up at your hotel but they don't return you to your hotel.
This five stars are for the sights and value, not the guides.The tours were very well worth the money. One cannot say that one liked going to Auschwitz and Birkenau, but it is an important place to witness. The driver was courteous and picked us up exactly on time. The Salt Mines tour (as in the one done by the Polish tour guide) was excellent and is a fascinating place to see. The tour company guides on this trip were among the worst ever encountered anywhere in the world. We were to be picked up at 9:00 outside the apartment we were renting. At 8:55, the guide called to say they would be 5 minutes late. We were so impressed by that. At 9:25, WE called HIM to find out what was happening and if we had been forgotten. Ten minutes later, the van showed up. We were so late in getting to the Salt Mines that we were rushed inside without ability to use the restrooms or purchase a photo pass which enables you to take pictures inside. Generally, a guide will tell you if you can leave things on the bus, but Jan never did. It was only when my husband asked if we could leave things that he said no. So everyone had to go back on and retrieve their belongings. as we would be going home on a different mini-bus. After the tour we asked Jan how much time we would have in the gift shop. His curt answer...we leave as soon, Again, we asked how long, and again he never gave a proper answer to anyone. We asked the other guide (name unknown) where the buses were and she said to walk to the parking lot. We arrived to find two tour company buses, one full and one nearly empty. We asked the driver if it mattered which bus we boarded. He spoke no English and so we waited in the hot sun for someone to show up. After 10 minutes we asked the driver again and he called the guide. She told us to wait in the parking lot, which we did for another 10 minutes only to eventually find out that our bus was not, nor had it ever been, in the parking lot, but was down the street. Good value; poor staff.
Both these tours were very informative and the tour guides were very knowledgeable.The tour guides were very helpful and nothing was any trouble for them.
The Auschwitz-Birkenau tour was very sad but very real.
The Salt Mine was absolutely beautiful and unbelievable!!
These two tours are on separate days, at first I thought they were on One day!!
Really good guides learnt a lot, but you need to be fit to walk as there is a lot of walking on these tours
Excellent tours, transport and guides. Thoroughly recommended. It would have been nice to have had at least half an hour/forty minutes for lunch at Auschwitz, but there wasn't time to make use of the cafe there. Similarly at the end, a little more time would have allowed us to queue to see inside the tower at the entrance to Birkenau. Other than that, excellent.
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