Hidden Gems of Europe

15 Oct 2012 9:06 AM | Anonymous

Hidden Gems of Europe



Kraków, Poland:  Bunkier Sztuki Contemporary Art Gallery


Visitors to Kraków might easily spend their entire trip within the confines of the Old Town’s medieval main square, where they’ll find the Gothic spires of St. Mary’s Basilica, the tiny early-Romanesque Church of St. Adalbert, and the Renaissance-style Cloth Hall, which today houses the National Museum’s Gallery of 19th-century Polish Art.  For sustenance, it’s simple to land at one of the many restaurants and cafes that ring the square; most offer outstanding views and, predictably, overpriced food and drinks.


Instead, walk two blocks down Plac Szczepanski to the edge of the Old Town, where a blocky complex houses the Bunkier Sztuki Contemporary Art Gallery (bunkier.art.pl; admission 10 złoty, or about $3 at 3.25 złoty to the dollar). The structure is not dissimilar to a war bunker undefined hence, the name undefined and is one of the best places to track down contemporary art and cultural events in the city. Inside, you might see a simulation of the world after the fall of capitalism, or a site-specific Dada collage accessed through a long, dark hallway.


Outside, the museum’s adjoining Bunkier Café is a pleasant place for a light lunch or postgallery coffee break. With sandboxes for the children and Polish beers for their parents, it is a local favorite and a much cooler alternative to the crowded main-square spots. The mismatched tables set on a wide patio undefined enclosed and heated in the winter, open-air in the summer undefined provide ideal perches for people-watching as strollers cross the leafy Planty Park, which encircles the Old Town.   INGRID K. WILLIAMS

 SF-Kraków Sister Cities Association
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