When it’s time to organize a stag do for your friend, you know you want to make it as spectacular as possible. And the best way to do that is to jet off to another country and have your wild weekend in a completely fresh environment. And in a situation like this, Krakow is an excellent destination.
Krakow is the second largest city in Poland but probably number one when it comes to partying. There are more clubs than you could count, the girls are gorgeous, and the nightlife amazing. And then there’s the booze. If you have a taste for vodka, you’ll never want to leave.
But seeing as you probably know next to nothing about the layout of the city and local goings-on, finding the right accommodation can be tricky.
In a situation like this, there are several aspects you need to take into consideration.
For one, you have to look at your potential accommodation and how it relates to the purpose of your visit. In other words, you’re in Krakow for a stag do – how much time do you actually intend to spend inside your lodgings? And while you’re there, which amenities will you really need to use? Then there are also your fellow stags and you have to take their needs into account.
You should also consider how close you’ll be to the places you intend to visit. Time flies when you’re partying and you don’t want to waste a lot of it in transit. You can also never afford to lose sight of your budget. Finally, it’s worth looking at what other travellers are saying about Krakow accommodations, both good and bad.
The Neighbourhoods of Krakow: Where to Stay?
Depending on where you’re coming from, the size of Krakow might catch you by surprise. While it’s no megalopolis, it is a pretty big city with 18 separate administrative districts and many more smaller neighbourhoods. However, you will find most of the city’s attractions close to the centre, meaning you don’t need to travel far to see the best Krakow has to offer. As a result, the areas closest to the city centre are the best places to stay. And while there are no particularly bad areas, you might want to steer clear of Nowa Huta, the easternmost district. This is particularly true if it’s late at night and you’ve had quite a few drinks.
Having said that, here are the six best neighbourhoods for you stay in during your Krakow stag do.
Old Town (Stare Miasto)
The historic centre and by far the most famous neighbourhood of Krakow, the Old Town actually has the same name as the entire first administrative district, even though it is only a part of it. It used to be surrounded by the city walls, but most of them are no longer standing and Planty Park lies in their stead. The Krakow Barbican has survived though and now represents a famous landmark.
A large market square (Rynek Glowny) occupies the centre of the Old Town, with its centrepiece being the Cloth Hall. And if you want a really nice view of the city, you can climb one of the towers of St. Mary’s Basilica. Still, the main tourist attraction would probably be Wawel Castle with the accompanying Wawel Cathedral.
But in addition to the architectural landmarks, the Old Town is also a prime location for your stag do needs. The area is absolutely vibrant at night and will be a great staging point for your unforgettable evening. With countless bars and other venues to visit, you may not even need to leave it at all. And if you happen to get hungry the next day, you’ll also find the famous Wierzynek restaurant here.
Due to its popularity with visitors, the Old Town has a wide range of available accommodations. From budget options to luxury hotels like the five-star Hotel Copernicus. But the one downside is the price so expect to pay more here than for comparable lodgings in other areas of the city.
Kleparz is a short walk north of the Old Town and is still a part of the same administrative district. However, it is noticeably less touristy, which is good news are far as accommodations are concerned. You can usually get a better deal than in the Old Town and still be very close to the heart of the city.
There is also plenty to see in Kleparz itself, such as the St. Florian’s Church. This neighbourhood is also home to the central train station, making it a great choice if you want your stag do to include a day trip.
South of the Old Town, Kazimierz is the centre of Jewish culture in Krakow. Originally, this neighbourhood even had distinct Christian and Jewish quarters. Because of this, the neighbourhood suffered terribly during WWII. Fortunately, it has managed to recuperate and is now among Krakow’s trendiest areas.
The Galicia Jewish Museum and the Old Jewish Cemetery are reminders of its troubled history, but the neighbourhood is now known for its amazing restaurants, bars, and cafes. This makes it a prime spot for anyone planning to enjoy Krakow’s nightlife, which is always the case with people on a stag do.
Accommodations are varied and a bit cheaper than in the Old Town, but there are more affordable areas out there.
Across the Vistula River from the Old Town, Dębniki offers a low-key alternative to its more famous neighbouring district. Having seen plenty of development in recent years, Dębniki can provide a nice choice of accommodations. As it is a primarily residential area, this means there are quite a few private apartments you can rent if that is your preference.
As a bonus, you can also find an artificial beach in this district. If you and your companions need some relaxation after a hard night of partying, this can be a great opportunity to catch your breath.
Well within walking distance of the Old Town and Kazimierz, Podgórze provides a nice way to avoid some of the crowds while still staying close to the action. The site of the infamous Jewish Ghetto from WWII, this district has managed to turn itself around and become a nice place to live in.
Since it is not a tourist hotspot, lodgings are more affordable. They mostly come in the shape of apartments, with some hotels and hostels thrown in for good measure.
And if you think your stag do could use a cultural activity to break up all the partying, you can visit the famous Schindler’s Factory.
A bit off the beaten track but still relatively close to the trendiest places, Grzegórzki lies east of the Old Town. While it is not much to look at on the surface, this district can offer you a glimpse into the real life of the denizens of Krakow.
But seeing as you are here on a stag do, you’ll likely only use Grzegórzki to find cheap accommodations and maybe enjoy some food in one of the numerous local restaurants. The available lodgings are mostly apartments, with some guest houses and hotels to add to the variety.
Different Types of Krakow Accommodations
As you can see, you can find a wide variety of accommodation options in Krakow. In order to make the best choice, it’s important to know a bit about each one.
A rented apartment is a true home away from home. If you want to be completely self-sufficient, this is the way to go. You have your privacy and can even cook for yourself if you have special dietary requirements. On the downside, they are on the expensive side when you’re just staying for the weekend. Also, the conditions can vary significantly, and the owner may not be available to offer you much assistance. When you are in a foreign country, this can be a problem.
The most comfortable option, you always know what you’re getting with a hotel. You can expect many niceties, and you can always ask the hotel staff when there’s something you need to know. On the other hand, this is a level of convenience you need to pay for and it is the most expensive type of accommodation in general. But, there are quite a few hotels in Krakow, so you can find a nice deal if you know where to look. Still, hotels can be impersonal and some have strict rules you need to abide by.
When it comes to partying, you can’t beat a hostel. Usually filled with young travellers, the common areas will allow you to meet new people and have fun. Hostels are also affordable, leaving you with more cash for the stag do itself. Of course, the quality of the lodgings can leave a lot to be desired. And if you go for a hostel with dormitory rooms, your privacy goes out the window. And because of the lively atmosphere, they are not a good choice if you want some peace and quiet.
If you want to spend the stag do in the nature, then camping is for you. Since you’ll be away from the city, this is a good choice if you and your friends need to get away from all the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Plus, it is also very affordable. On the other hand, you’ll also be far away from Krakow’s biggest attractions. There are also very few modern comforts, and the weather can really ruin your weekend.
Often in the outskirts, guest houses are good for those people who want their stag do to be a more low-key affair. They are very homey, and the proprietors can be a great source if you want local information. But, they also tend to be rather unique establishments, so the cost and the quality can differ greatly. They are definitely not for stags who plan to go wild with their partying. You also may not see eye to eye with the proprietor, which can be an issue.
Let the Experts Handle the Details
With so many options, it’s not easy to find a lodging which fits your stag do program the best. Plus, there are some local secrets you simply cannot know when you’re not from Krakow. That is why there are many benefits to letting professionals like Stagmadness do the heavy lifting for you. For example, you do not need to worry about finding a specific venue. Just choose the category you want, and Stagmadness will handle the rest. You also get lodgings which welcome people on stag dos, meaning your partying ways will be met with approval. This also makes it easier to arrange transportation, you’ll have a whole team to back you up in case of any issues, etc. In essence, you get a package holiday.
With Stagmadness, you have three options to choose from. A 3-star hotel gives you a nice balance of price and quality. You can choose between room types, and you get breakfast to start off your day. A hostel features dormitories for those who enjoy shared accommodations and also includes breakfast. Finally, an apartment gives you the freedom and space to do things your way.
While the accommodations may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about a stag do, there is no escaping the importance of this topic. Proper lodgings are your base of operations in Krakow and are one of the elements which will allow you to have an amazing experience.
That being said, there are two things you need to pay special attention to. One is the neighbourhood where you’ll be staying. Assuming you’re there to party, the Old Town and Kazimierz are your best bets.
The other is the type of accommodation. There is a number of factors you need to consider here, one being the number of people coming with you. Hostels are great for larger crowds, while an apartment can be an amazing experience if you can fit your entire group in one.
And finally, it’s always worth remembering there are experts who can assist you. Stagmadness can help you plan everything and make sure the accommodations are top-notch, the same as the stag do itself.