First up was Wawel! A stone complex holding a church, a castle, and so many rooms! The oldest buildings date back to 970AD! I learned a cute Polish folktale about a king, a dragon, and the classic hero who defeats the Dragon and marries the princess. I wandered through the details of this story, where the royal family lived, the rooms of political meetings, ballrooms, towers, and even the “dragons den".
Another day, another cathedral! And yet, not a single one has underwhelmed me. The exceedingly detailed St. Marys Basilica is one hefty show off! With every single inch of this grand (to say the least) gothic building featuring nothing less than jaw dropping art. Being devoted to saint Mary, this 14th century masterpiece features a wooden altar piece depicting the death of Jesus’s mother and the assumption of Madonna. This is the largest gothic masterpiece in the world! It is surrounded by floor to ceiling paintings, sculptures, stained glass stories, filigree columns, and the list goes on. Once again, more jaw dropping beauty.
I then strolled through the oldest shopping mall in the world! Dating to the 16th century, the hall holds many stalls of clothing, trinkets, food, services, all traditionally Polish. Finished my day enjoying some local elderly jazz players while sipping cocktails in the main square. Life is bliss.
6 hours, 14,000 steps, and I'm trying to emotionally prep myself for Auschwitz tomorrow.