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An Archdiocesan museum may not sound like the most riveting prospect for an afternoon in Cracow, but this one is no lame duck. Set in a sweeping palace at the foot of the Royal Castle, the museum is an opulent testament to the power of the Church in Poland, which owned over a third of the property in Cracow's Old Town in 1944 (the communists later stripped the institution to its bones). The greatest hero of the post-war era, Pope John Paul II, lived here twice, once as a priest, and once as a bishop, and his apartments have been recreated on the first floor. There are some rich pickings from across the centuries, as well as a number of presents that were donated to the Church. Parts of the restoration appear a little over-enthusiastic in some salons, but on the whole this is fine building that's worth investigating (the renaissance courtyard at the heart of the complex is one of the most beautiful in Cracow). The museum also hosts some excellent one-off art exhibitions.
Editor & Krakow Local