Take a sobering tour of the World War II Auschwitz-Birkenau complex on a 7-hour trip from Krakow. Travel by coach to the UNESCO World Heritage compound and explore the twin concentration camp with a guide as you learn about the Nazi Holocaust and how the camps functioned. Explore the poignant exhibition halls, and see the barracks, gas chambers and other buildings at Auschwitz I. Then, view the watchtowers, crumbled buildings and memorials at Auschwitz II-Birkenau. Your guide will explain everything you see with care and sensitivity.
Choose your preferred departure time when you book, and begin your experience with a pickup from our central meeting point or your Krakow hotel. Board your coach and as you travel, watch an onboard documentary that explains the history of WWII and the Nazi Holocaust. Learn how approximately 1.1 million people — mostly Jewish, Polish and Russian prisoners — were killed at Auschwitz-Birkenau from 1940 onward, until both camps were liberated by the Allies in 1945.After roughly 1.5 hours on the road, arrive at Auschwitz and set off on a guided tour of both the UNESCO-listed Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau sites. Enter the Auschwitz I compound through the gates inscribed with Arbeit Macht Frei (Work Sets You Free), and discover how it quickly turned from a Nazi detention camp for Polish political prisoners into a center for mass murder.Explore the main buildings — some still intact and some in ruins — and walk around the exhibitions that chart the fates of many of those detained here. View the dormitories and gas chambers, and see the factory areas where prisoners were forced to make munitions and other products for Germany’s war efforts. While the facts of what happened here are shocking and distressing, your guide will explain everything in the most sensitive way possible.After viewing Auschwitz I, take a short break to collect your thoughts and then visit nearby Auschwitz II-Birkenau. Here, see what remains of the watchtowers, fences and barracks as you hear about the appalling conditions endured by those held here. Witness the remnants of the gas chambers and crematoriums that were destroyed by the fleeing Nazis, and then visit the deeply poignant memorials to the victims to spend time in memory of those who suffered and died here.After approximately three hours, travel back to Krakow where your tour ends at your original start point.