Poland’s capital city is easy to reach from Kraków and makes a good weekend destination. Much of Warsaw was built after 1945. Even the pretty Old Town is mostly reconstruction. But there are excellent museums and places to eat. It’s also one of Europe’s great cities to go out drinking!
At roughly 300km away, Poland’s capital city is easy to reach from Kraków and makes a good weekend destination. Much of Warsaw (“Warszawa” in Polish, pronounced “vahr-shah-vah”) was built after 1945, having been largely destroyed during the Second World War. Even the pretty Old Town is mostly reconstruction. The result is a patchwork of different districts and monuments. Mostly Modernist and modern, Warsaw has little of the overwhelming beauty of Kraków, it is true, but there are excellent museums and places to eat, and it is changing all the time. It’s also one of Europe’s great cities to go out drinking!
There are good arguments for every form of transport, as all are frequent, reasonably fast, and competitively priced. However, the train probably has a slight edge in terms of convenience and comfort.
How To Get From Kraków To Warsaw By Train
The train is the best option for most travellers. It’s the fastest, most comfortable, and remains competitively priced. There are hourly departures from Kraków Główny, right in the centre of the city, which arrives at Warszawa Centralna, right around the corner from the Palace of Culture and Science. You really couldn’t ask for a more direct route. Trains run from very early in the morning until late evening, and (at time of writing) cost roughly 125zł (36€) per person each way. Trains are comfortable and modern. The whole journey takes 2.5-3 hours.
Get tickets at the train station or in advance from the easy-to-use PKP train portal. It has a comprehensive timetable of possible routes, and full information for platforms and departures. Search for Kraków Główny to Warszawa Centralna. Once you’ve chosen a route, click BUY A TICKET and you’ll be taken through to the Intercity booking site.
How To Get From Kraków To Warsaw By Coach
The coach is the cheapest method and also quite convenient. These leave twice an hour from the Dworzec Autobusowy in Kraków, just next to the train station. You can get off at a number of stops once you reach Warsaw. Prices vary considerably and are typically less than 32zł (9€) each way. Coaches are modern and comfortable. The downside is that the journey time is roughly 4.5 hours, compared to almost half that for the train. Check with a service like 12go for prices and timetables.
How To Fly To Warsaw From Kraków
There are several flights daily from both John Paul II and Katowice airports. Whilst a plane might seem the fastest option, you have to add the time it takes between the airport and city centre at each end, and it could end up being the most expensive option.
Polish airline LOT offers up to seven direct flights a day from John Paul II International to Warsaw Chopin International, and three from Katowice Airport. One-way flights are roughly 160zł (35€) at time of writing and take about an hour each way, but you have to factor in travel to the airport and waiting times, possibly 4 hours in total.
Check 12go for times and prices of flights.
It takes about 30 minutes from Warsaw Chopin International to Warsaw city centre by public transport, but it is always worth considering a private transfer to get you to the airport in Kraków and also when you arrive in Warsaw.
Other Polish Cities You Can Visit From Kraków
You will find a general overview of the transport network on our page How To Travel From Kraków To Other Polish Cities. This gives information on how to use trains, coaches, planes, and private vehicles in Poland, and where each type of service departs in Kraków.
- Kraków To Białystok: In the north east of Poland, Białystok has a lively cultural scene and a handful of tourist attractions, and is close to the UNESCO-listed Białowieski National Park and the oldest forests in Europe.
- Kraków To Gdańsk: On the Baltic coast, Gdańsk is friendly and great for food, and one of Poland’s biggest tourist destinations.
- Kraków To Gdynia: Gdynia is also a port city with some lovely sandy beaches, and also makes a great day trip from neighbouring Gdańsk.
- Kraków To Katowice: For something a bit different, Katowice is very post-industrial. It’s airport and proximity to Kraków make it worth consideration for travellers who want a future-facing (and very green) Poland, with dramatic, modern architecture.
- Kraków To Łódź: Set in the very heart of Poland, Łódź is coming into its own as a creative city. The city is alive with murals and street art. There’s a great food scene and a nice mix of architectural styles. Right now, Łódź has that exciting feel of the future.
- Kraków To Lublin: On the eastern side of Poland, Lublin is best known as a cultural and academic city. It has a rich Jewish heritage and was apparently referred to as the ‘Jewish Oxford’ in the Jagiellonian era. There is a nice mix of medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque, with some atmospheric cobbled streets.
- Kraków To Olsztyn: Up in the north, Olsztyn is often overlooked by tourists keen to reach the more famous Gdańsk. It does, however, have a pretty Old Town and ranks very highly for quality of life. What’s more, the city provides a gateway to some gorgeous wild countryside of lakes and forests.
- Kraków To Poznań: 300km to the west of Warsaw, youthful Poznań has a lively, friendly nightlife, with plenty of restaurants and bars. The Old Town is brightly coloured and quirkily decorated with bold styles similar to Southern Germany. There’s plenty here to keep you occupied for a long weekend, with a museums, a cathedral, and historical buildings, but the city also makes a great base for exploring Poland’s countryside.
- Kraków To Sopot: Another seaside resort, between Gdynia and Gdańsk, Sopot is a playground for the rich. With sandy beaches and a pier, as well as the shops, bars, and clubs of Bohaterów Monte Cassino, it can be very busy at the height of the season. Even more than Gdynia, Sopot might be best sampled first as an afternoon out, rounded off with a meal in one of the excellent fish restaurants.
- Kraków To Szczecin: Close to the border with Germany, Szczecin is off the beaten track for most tourists. The Old Town is pretty and there are a handful of attractions to see. But, mainly, visiting Szczecin is a great opportunity to get to know Polish food and to engage with the culture – there is a fine Philharmonic building and the grand Ducal Castle is now an arts centre.
- Kraków To Toruń: Largely untouched by the Second World War, Toruń is a UNESCO World Heritage Site on the Vistula River to the north west of Warsaw. The architectural highlights are dominated by the huge Gothic cathedral and the city feels less hectic than more famous tourist destinations.
- Kraków To Wrocław: Wrocław is a charming city in the western part of Poland, with islands and bridges criss-crossing the water and a strong Gothic flavour to the architecture. Built out from the 10th century Ostrów Tumski (Cathedral Island), Wrocław also has a stunning market square, much of which is listed within a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Kraków To Zakopane: 110km from Kraków, Poland’s outdoor capital and winter resort, Zakopane is nestled at the root of the High Tatra mountains. The area is excellent for hiking, skiing, and a range of other activities. However, there is also unique folk architecture and plenty of more spectacular attractions.