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The Ultimate Guide to Summer in Krakow

From long sunny walks across the old town to basking in the sun on the banks of the Vistula River, summer in Krakow is filled with joyful activities. You will get to enjoy the beer gardens until late hours, but you might also be greeted by sunshine when you walk out of a club at 5 am. Yes, summer in Krakow is a great time to visit.

Summer is the absolute peak season in Krakow, and there is a good reason for it. You will get plenty of sunshine – but it’s not guaranteed, and hot temperatures. There is no need to pack extra jumpers or too many pairs of trousers! Make sure to bring your summer dresses to enjoy the temperatures that often reach 30 degrees.

This guide takes a look at the ins and outs of Krakow travel in the summer. You will learn about the weather and what is going on in June, July and August. Read on!

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What’s in this guide to summer in Krakow

Krakow weather in summer

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Summer in Krakow is usually hot but, sadly, not always sunny. It’s no Greece – summertime sunshine is not guaranteed, but you’re likely to get more sunny days than rain. That said, in the height of summer in Krakow, when the temperatures go near and beyond 30 Celsius, sudden thunderstorms happen quite often, so we don’t recommend leaving your windows open when you go out. They will usually only last about half an hour, but they’re often intense.

Unlike the common presumption that Poland is a cold country, it’s certainly not the case in the summer. Especially not in the southern parts of the country, where Krakow is. It can get very hot here, and July, on average is the hottest month of the year. You will often get away with wearing shorts and T-shirts long after the sun goes down, so no need to pack too many jumpers.

Our pick: Krakow in June

June

June in Krakow is one of the best months of the year. Not only are the days at their longest, with sunsets as late as 9 pm, but it’s also nice and warm. You will see the temperatures in their low and mid-20s throughout June, and trust me – that’s perfect. Although statistically, that’s the wettest month of the year, it’s because of the thunderstorms that bring large amounts of rainfall in short periods. So don’t worry, you will usually see plenty of sunshine in Krakow in June.

The reason we think June is one of the best months to visit Krakow is that you will get the summer weather before the school summer break. That means you won’t get the same crowds as you would in July and August. You will get to enjoy Krakow’s beer gardens until late in the night.

The annual midsummer celebrations known as Wianki takes place in the last week of June on the riverbanks. There is usually a big event to mark the first day of summer with artists and fireworks. If you’re visiting in the first week of June, though, don’t miss the Krakow Film Festival.

Krakow in July

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July is the sunniest and the hottest month of the year here, so make sure you bring plenty of summer clothes with you. It is the midst of summer in Krakow and an absolute peak season – it’s a great time to visit Krakow. Bear in mind that it will be harder to score bargains on hotels and you might need to book some tours in advance – it can be busy.

Summer in Krakow, especially July, is the best time to enjoy the city’s vibrant nightlife. Krakow doesn’t sleep, so you will find plenty of places open long after the sun goes down. Join the iconic Krawl Through Krakow for an unforgettable summer experience.

Krakow in August

August

August in Krakow is pretty similar to July when it comes to the weather. You will get plenty of sunshine, hot temperatures, and some rain and thunderstorms. The days though, are starting to get a little shorter, especially towards the end of the month, so you might need to wear a jumper in the evenings a bit more often.

Again, this is the peak season in Krakow, so you will see the prices of hotels at their highest and the main square at its busiest. There is a good reason for it, though – August is a great time to visit Krakow. As with June and July, you will get to enjoy the outdoor cafes and bars and the evening strolls along the Vistula River. You can bask in the sun on a deckchair in Forum Przestrzenie, and you can enjoy a cold beer in RE’s beer garden.

Kraków Live Festival takes place at the end of August. It’s a popular music event that’s been held in Krakow since 2006, with different artists performing every year. Make sure to book your tickets in advance, though, you might not be able to get them otherwise. 

Summer in Krakow: top things to do

Summer in Krakow

Summer in Krakow is a beautiful time of the year with the best weather to enjoy the outdoors. Here are a few ideas of things to do in Krakow during the hottest season:

Enjoy summer festivals

Summer is the best time to visit Krakow if you’re into festivals. Whether you’re after massive music events or small fairs, most of them happen in the summer. The biggest is Krakow Live Festival, a two-day music event with international and local artists. It takes place at the grounds of the Polish Aviation Museum in late August. But if you’re coming to Krakow in June, don’t miss the midsummer festival that is held on the riverbanks.

Go walking

Krakow is best explored on foot, and summer is by far the best time for however long or short you want your strolls to be. Yes, this is the time when you can enjoy the sun on your face while exploring this beautiful city in the summer glow. You can stop for an ice-cold lemonade or sit on the green grass of the riverbanks and watch the world go by.

If you’re tired of the urban walks, catch a bus to Zakopane and go walking in the Tatras. Mountains look glorious in the summer glow.

Enjoy beer gardens

One of the best things about Krakow in the summer is beer gardens – there is no shortage of them. In the old town, head to RE, and in Kazimierz, go to the massive outdoor space in Stara Zajezdnia. Let’s not forget about the iconic Forum Przestrzenie full of deckchairs overlooking the river. You will also see plenty of cafes and bars putting tables on the streets – yes, that’s what you get in Europe.

Go to a lake

One thing you should know is that summers in Krakow can get incredibly hot, and sadly the closest coast is miles away. So, you’ve established that you can’t go to the beach on this hot summer day, so what can you do? Lakes! Although you won’t find any alpine lagoons here, there are a few cool spots in Krakow for a refreshing dip. A hidden turquoise lake, Zakrzowek is a flooded old quarry about a 20-minute walk from Wawel Castle. This place is technically closed, though, so don’t go there if you’re looking for a legal place to swim. Instead, you can go to Bagry, Przylasek Rusiecki or Kryspinow.

Summer in Krakow: dates to remember

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There are a couple of dates to remember in summer in Krakow. You may find the shops or restaurants busier than usual, so it’s worth knowing about these when planning your travels:

Midsummer (Wianki)

Wianki is an annual festival to mark the longest night of the year and the beginning of the summer in Krakow. There is usually a big stage on the Vistula River banks with international and local artists that perform until late in the night on the first weekend of the calendar summer. The name of the festival, Wianki, translates into flower crowns. The reason is that traditionally, young girls would throw them into the river so that they could get married the following year. These days, the celebrations are there to mark the start of the summer – don’t miss it.

Corpus Christi

Corpus Christi is a religious holiday that takes place on a Thursday in June or late May. Poles take part in large outdoor processions across villages and towns. You will also see them in Krakow. It’s a public holiday, so the majority of shops will be closed.

Assumption of Mary

It is another Catholic holiday that takes place on the 15th of August. Apart from going to church, Poles have a day off work which means that most shops will be closed. Restaurants and cafes will mostly stay open as normal. 

Where to stay during summer in Krakow

Asia K
Asia K

Asia K (the surname is long, unspellable, and very Polish!) is a Krakow native. She lived and worked in the city her whole life before heading off to travel the world. Today, she comes to Krakow as a regular visitor, which is just what's needed to put together expert guides for fly-in visitors and weekend breakers. She's an avid hiker (hello Tatra Mountains) and loves craft beer (mmm Kazimierz)

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