Krakow, Poland - cultural, beautiful, high-spirited, musical, small
I went to Krakow, Poland and I studied Sociology and Intercultural Communications at a small private university called Tischner European University
. I was a bit apprehensive to go to Poland at first, because I was the only one from my university going there. However, as soon as I got there, met my Polish flatmates and the other 15 Erasmus students
at my university, I loved it! We immediately got on with each other, spending all our time together exploring Krakow, but also going further afield, travelling around Poland as far as the Belarusian and Lithuanian border. We also made a trip to Ukraine. My favourite place in Krakow would have to be Alchemia, which is a pub/coffee shop/underground cinema/gig venue, located in the Jewish quarter. This place has no electric lights, it’s lit by candle light at night and it has a really great atmosphere. I wouldn’t recommend packing too much, as you would most likely buy many things there. Prices may have changed now, but when I went, everything seemed very cheap there and I didn’t even manage to spend all my grant money!
Useful local words: 'Prosze to napisac'.
What not to pack: Too much medicine - they have pharmacies in Poland!
What to pack: A good winter coat.
Couldn't have done without: English teabags.
Word of advice: One piece of advice for anyone going to Krakow is try to get to know Polish people and not just the foreigners like you, submerge yourself in the culture!
Darya Syrpis, Russian and Polish, Birmingham University