Broken glasses, toys, shoes, tooth brushes, broken chests and many more simple items, become much more legendary and iconic once you put them in different perspectives.
There are more than 100,000 items in Auschwitz, serving as an iconic testimony of the genocide and crimes against humanity done during the Second World War. Visitors can even see human hair safely put in glass case! It is believed that the hair once belonged to living people, victims of the horrific crimes. For years, there was a debate about whether human hair should be shown to visitors, since some of the survivors were commenting that the hair might be of their mothers/sisters/brothers/fathers and other relatives. In the end, the hair was preserved.
There were many extermination camps built by Germans during the Second World War, but Auschwitz is one of the most famous. Located around 60 km from Krakow, the camp witnessed the death of more than one million people. Initially, Auschwitz served as a punishment for Poles and Jews, but prisoners from other nationalities soon followed. The camp has become the symbol of the terror, genocide and the Holocaust. Today, it serves as a memory, reminding us of the horror the War brought to EU. Families of the survivors consider it pilgrimage, and visit the camp regularly. Other tourists go there to see for themselves what has happened.
Auschwitz consists of 3 main parts: Auschwitz I, Auschwitz II-Birkenau, and Auschwitz III-Monowitz. Tourists can visit the first two parts of the camp. The main building has a museum with a theater. You can watch a 15-minute movie, shot after the camp was liberated. The second part, Auschwitz-Birkenau still has the entrance gate, the railway track and ramp and many old barracks. Visit the buildings where the prisoners were held just before execution, gas chambers and memorial site.
Choose from the general tours, one-day study tours, two-day study tours or guided tours for individual visitors. Except for January 1, December 25, Easter and Sundays, the Museum is open. It is recommended to reserve your tour two weeks in advance. General tours include visits to the buildings of the main camp and some of the Auschwitz II-Birkenau. The tour lasts three and a half hours, and it is the shortest of all options.
When you want spend a little bit more time in Auschwitz, choose either the one-day (around six hours) or two-day (approx 8 hours) study tours. Besides visiting the main buildings, you will also experience selected national exhibitions, visit the sauna and other places that have witnessed the horror of the War.
Individual visitors can form a group and set a time for their visit. There is a guide for every tour, available in many languages, including English, German, Spanish, Italian, Polish, Croatian, Russian, Swedish, Hungarian and Czech.
There are several types of tours for Auschwitz, and you can book for all of them online, by phone (+48) 33 844 81 00 / 844 80 99 (Monday through Friday from 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM local time), or via email [email protected]