Today is National Independence Day (Narodowe Święto Niepodległości), a national holiday in Poland, when Poles commemorate the 98th anniversary of the restoration of Poland’s sovereignty as the Second Polish Republic in 1918, after 123 years of partition
Across the country homes, buildings, streets, even buses and trams will be bedecked in the red and white national colours proudly displaying the national flag, including a 22m flag hanging from the Town Hall tower and the Bernatka footbridge and Tauron arena lit up in red and white.
In Kraków the main Independence Day events are:-
10am Independence Day Mass & Parade – Wawel Cathedral to Pl Matejko
The traditional Mass. will be held in Wawel Cathedral ceremony will be held in Wawel Cathedral. At the conclusion of the mass, the Independence Day parade will begin from the Wawel Hill at the Katyn Cross, where wreaths will be laid. The parade continues along ul. Grodzka, to the main square and via Florianska to pl. Matejko.
1500-1900 Independence Day in Krakow. March of independence
The Nationalist association Third Way (Trzecia Droga) is organising a march for independence from the main square, next streets Grodzka Franciscan Straszewskiego, Podwale, Dunajewski on pl. Matejko.
1500-1650 Krakow Independence Run
The 3rd Krakow Independence Run (3 Krakowskim Biegiem Niepodległości). Starts from al. May 3, along the route :- al. Foch Street. Pilsudski, Planty (along streets Straszewskiego, Podwale, Dunajewski, Basztowa, Westerplatte St. Gertrude), further ul. St. Giles, Podzamcze, boulevards, Flisacka, Kosciuszko St. Bronisława al. Washington, Zaścianek, Malczewski al. Focha and al. 3rd of May. For more information visit www.biegniepodleglosci.com.pl
1700-1900 Independence Day in Krakow, Singing Lesson
The 62nd edition of the ‘Singing Lesson – Happy Independence’, (Lekcja Śpiewania – Radosna Niepodległości) community sing along concert will be held on the Market Square- at the Town Hall Tower. The concert will be lead by the Director of the Polish Library Song Waldemar Domanski and Kazimierz Madej, and feature Eve Kornecki from Loch Camelot.
1030 – 1430 – Patriotic Tram
Once again the “Patriotic Tram” will travel through Kraków. On the tram young Poles from school choirs will sing patriotic songs. Passengers are encouraged to join in and will be handed song books, flags, badges, and leaflets to help get them in the mood. The tram will run around Planty from 10:30 until 14:30.
Images from Previous Independence Day Parade
© David McGirr
Be aware that due to the parades and independence day run, some streets will be closed and there will likely be temporary traffic congestion in the area between the hours. 11.30 and 13.30.