Holocaust and WW II
Auschwitz School Trip / Study Tour, 4 days
"The topography and logic of the Holocaust".
School trips to the Auschwitz Museum evoke deep reflections regarding human conditioning, the world we live in and our own responsibility for us and other people. They put a question about the limits of opportunism and compromise as well as about everyone’s civil courage to rise up against evil. For the youth, they are a lesson of shaping their philosophy of life as well as political awareness.
morning: Flight to Katowice or Krakow. Coach transfer from the airport to your hotel in Krakow. Lunch.
afternoon: “Krakow, city of kings”. Tour of the Old Town in Krakow, the historic capital of Poland. Programme includes the Main Market Square, the Cloth Hall, and St Mary’s Basilica, with its famous wooden altarpiece made by Wit Stwosz (Veit Stoss); the Gothic courtyard of Collegium Maius, the narrow streets of the Old Town, the Cathedral on Wawel Hill, with the tombs of the Polish kings, and the Royal Castle.
evening: Dinner at your hotel and free time.
excursion: “Auschwitz–the topography and logic of the Holocaust”: two-part tour. The first part covers the exhibition in the prisoner blocks in Auschwitz I–Stammlager (the original camp): the death block, the wall of death, and the only surviving gas chamber and crematorium. After a rest, a tour of Auschwitz II–Birkenau, the site of the mass extermination of the Jews, with the preserved prisoners’ barracks, the ruins of the gas chambers and crematoria, and the monument commemorating the victims of the camp. Return to Krakow.
evening: Dinner, followed by a meeting with an “eyewitness to history”–a survivor of the Krakow ghetto or a “Righteous Among the Nations of the World”, one of the people who helped fellow Jewish residents of the city survive during the Holocaust.
morning: “Before the Holocaust”–tour of Kazimierz, the former Jewish quarter of Krakow. Visit to the Gothic and Renaissance Old Synagogue, now the Jewish Museum, and to the sixteenth-century Jewish cemetery adjacent to the Remuh Synagogue. After a rest, a tour of the site of the former ghetto in the district of Podgórze–surviving sections of the ghetto wall; the Eagle Pharmacy, a site of memory; and the “empty chairs” memorial. Lunch.
afternoon: Tour of the multimedia exhibition “Krakow under Nazi occupation 1939–1945” in the former Oskar Schindler Factory.
evening: Dinner in a Jewish restaurant in Kazimierz and a concert of klezmer music.
Check-out. Transfer to the airport and flight out of Krakow.