Although I done some research on-line about Wieliczka before I went on the tour, I was still a bit unsure about how much I would enjoy this. I was very surprised. This is definetly something everyone who visits Poland should do. Amazing just begins to describe it. Yes it is very touristy and yes there were crowds, but the way it is laid out and organized, I never once felt like were were being rushed or packed in with hundreds of other people. Other places could learn a lesson from the company that runs the mine. Our english speaking guide was charming with a great sense of humor. She said at one point during the tour that although the Polish Crown Jewels had been lost in a battle many years ago, this mine is like their crown jewel, and that was perfectly said.
Not an easy place to visit but I wouldn't have missed it for the world. Our english speaking tour guide was excellent. She neither overly dramatized the exhibits nor did she minimize the awful realities that took place there. I took the afternoon trip and that was for me a perfect way to see the site. On the way out to the memorial (it is more memorial than museum), it poured rain but by the time we arrived the sun came out and the sparkling early evening sunlight on the puddles added to the somber atmosphere. During the short bus trip between Auschwitz and Birkenau our guide told us that she had been conducting tours for over 12 years here. Depending on the group she is with it can be emotionally draining. However she finds solice in knowing she has toured thousands of people though the memorial, and that equates to thousends of people who will never forget this tragic portion of human history. That thought stayed with me all the way back to Krakow.
New Orleans, Louisiana
One of the best tours ever. Our guide, Carla Boullion was not only entertaining but also an incredible wealth of inforamtion and full of local color. I still cannot shake some of the ghost stories she shared with us. I highly recommend this experience.
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