The Rynek Underground Museum is an extraordinary museum – often rated as the very best in the city – that takes you on a journey through time beneath the main plaza of Krakow. This unique underground exhibit offers visitors a captivating experience that seamlessly blends history, technology, and storytelling in one.
Stepping into the Rynek Underground Museum is like stepping back in time to medieval Krakow. The museum’s state-of-the-art exhibits use innovative multimedia techniques to recreate the vibrant atmosphere of the city’s bustling market square as it was in the 14th century.
As you wander through the underground chambers, you’ll uncover the secrets of the past and gain a deeper understanding of Krakow’s rich cultural heritage. This guide will run through all the ins and outs of the Rynek Underground, showcase what you can expect to find there, and give just a few reasons why we think it should be on all sightseeing bucket-lists of the city.
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What’s in this guide to the Rynek Underground Museum?
Where is the Rynek Underground?
That’s easy – the Rynek Underground Museum stands smack dab in the heart of Krakow. It’s actually underneath the iconic Sukkeniece building, the old Cloth Hall that dominates the center of the Main Market Square.
The upshot? You can walk here in a matter of minutes from pretty much ANY hotel in the Old Town, and ride a tram (or walk up) from Kazimierz in between 10-30 minutes.
What is the Rynek Underground Museum?
The Rynek Underground Museum is an underground museum located beneath the main square (Rynek Główny) in the heart of the Kraków Old Town.
It showcases the archaeological remains of the medieval market stalls and streets that once existed in that area. The museum also offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the history of Kraków through interactive exhibitions, multimedia presentations, and preserved artifacts.
We rate it as one of the overall best museums in the city – pick this if you’ve only got time to see one exhibit!
What is there to do at the Rynek Underground Museum?
You’ll discover stunning archaeological finds, including remnants of the original market stalls and even the cobblestone streets where people and traders would have trodden all those centuries ago. Engaging interactive displays allow you to explore various aspects of daily life in medieval Krakow, from trade and craftsmanship to social customs and religious practices.
For us the highlights of the museum include:
- Film projected onto smoke – Visitors are met with a film that depicts the onetime inhabitants of Krakow. Only this film is projected onto a plume of smoke to lend a real lifelike quality to the people it shows.
- The actual market stalls from the medieval ages – There’s a whole corridor of stone remains that show where the actual traders of the 1300s and 1400s would have sold thier wares. You can even see the original cobbled streets of the city!
- Recreations of 13th-centry homes and shops – Some of the best parts of the exhibit are in the meticulously designed recreations of the 13th century buildings. They offer the little ones an immersive glimpse of what life would really have been like for people living in Krakow at the time.
How much does the Rynek Underground Museum cost?
It’s 32 PLN ($7.50) for a full-price adult entry to the Rynek Underground Museum, and 28 PLN ($6.60) for a reduced price ticket (pensioners, retirees, students). You can also get a family ticket for 64 PLN ($15) that includes access for four people.
If you don’t fancy forking out for that, then the good news is that admission on Tuesdays is 100% free. It’s just not possible to book that ahead of time, so be sure to get there nice and early to make sure you get in.