The Main Market Square is the tourist center of the Old Town of Krakow, the beginning of most sightseeing routes around the city. Here you can see many interesting sights. In the houses surrounding the square there are cafes and restaurants where tourists can relax.
The Main Market Square is the center of the Old Town of Krakow. It was formed in the 13th century. Its dimensions for medieval Europe were huge: 200 x 200 meters. There were no such squares in the cities of that time.
At the same time, the city administration approved a plan that three parallel streets adjoin the Main Market Square, repeating the layout of the ancient Roman city with clear square blocks. This layout has been preserved in the Old Town of Krakow to this day.
On the south side of the Main Market Square there was the Town Hall of Krakow, as well as the Church of St. Wojciech.
The Krakow Town Hall occupied a significant part of the Square, so in the 19th century the city authorities decided to dismantle the Town Hall building, but they left the Town Hall Tower. Its height reaches 80 meters and nowadays a museum has been created in it, as well as a viewing point. In the Middle Ages, large basements were dug under the Tower of the Town Hall. There was a prison, and now there is a Theater Stage of the People`s Theater.
In the center of the Main Market Square there is a large building of Cloth Rows. It was built in 1257, when the square itself was created. In the Middle Ages, the cloth rows on the Main Market Square often burned, but by the 19th century a large architectural ensemble in the Austrian style had formed here. Now there are many shops selling souvenirs, and on the second floor there are collections of the Gallery of Polish Art of the 19th century of the National Museum of Krakow.
In the Cloth Rows is the entrance to the Underground Market Museum, where you can see the buildings of Krakow from the early Middle Ages. In front of the Cloth Rows in 1898, a monument to Adam Mickiewicz was erected on the Main Market Square.
On the north-eastern side of the Main Market Square is the Mariacka Church, which is one of the largest and most beautiful churches in Krakow. The building of the Historical Museum is located on the north-western side of the Main Market Square.