As mentioned in our previous post, we even made it to visit the Auschwitz Concentration Camp Memorial, though our trip to Krakow was a short one. The day trip lasted a little bit more than six hours (transport, guided tour and a little break). We booked the trip in advance via Get Your Guide.
Get Your Guide conveys trips and informs you about departure time, meeting point and prices. Once booked here, you only have to take your voucher with you to the meeting point. Therefore everything worked out fine, prices were the same as on site and our places were guaranteed.
Visiting the Memorial is only possible with a guide. We’re actually not big fans of guided tours but this one was good. Our guide tried to inform us as objective as possible about an emotional topic (if it’s even possible in this case) and told us everything we needed to know.
By the way, photography was not an easy topic one in this case. You really want to take pictures of all of this? Isn’t this a little bit disrespectful? We decided to take a few pictures on the outside but none from the inside. In some rooms, it was forbidden to take pictures. In our opinion, a sense of modesty should prevent you from doing so, anyway.
Why visit Auschwitz Memorial
World War II and the death of million people caused by the Nazis, especially in the concentration camps, still gives many people the creeps. As there is recently an increased number of people in Europe, that want the ‘good, old times’ back and a tendency in many elections to vote far right, it’s more important than ever to remember people that the good times are times of peace and not those of persecution, hate and death.
If you don’t share this opinion, a visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau may change yours. The Concentration Camps are today a Memorial for the millions of victims of the Holocaust and a reminder of what humans are capable of. If this doesn’t teach you the better, there’s no help for you.
Description of the tour
Our first stop was Auschwitz I, the main camp. Almost everything is well preserved here and the creep factor is very high. The amount of disgust that overcomes you here, seeing three tonnes of real human hair only separated by a glass wall from you, cannot be put in words. Dental gold, suitcases etc. The mountain of children’s shoes was terrible in particular.
Many people know this stuff in advance before they come here. But actually being there is still another story.
Auschwitz II (Extermination Camp Birkenau)
Auschwitz-Birkenau is the place where most people were killed. Just before the arrival of the Red Army, the Nazis tried to destroy as much as possible. Some barracks survived, some were recreated afterwards.
The condition in which humans were held like cattle are unbelievable and make you feel like throwing up. It’s unbelievable to us that people are playing this down or even denying it. At least for us, emotions are boiling over.
We saw a group of young Israelis and thought about how horrible it must be for them seeing the place probably their grand- or great-grandparents were murdered.
Our visit to Auschwitz Memorial wasn’t a nice trip and it wasn’t supposed to be. We really thought about whether to book this trip or not as we weren’t in Krakow for long and the visit was going to be depressing. At the end, we were glad we did it, though.
The mass processing of the visitors appeared weird at some time. But from an educational and memorable point of view, everyone on this planet should see this place with their own eyes.
If you have any more questions regarding the tour or anything else, just contact us!