St. Stanislaus Church (Skalka)
One of Krakow’s most notable religious sites and situated on the edge of the city’s Kazimierz district, the Skalka Sanctuary—translated as “Church on the Rock”—can be explored independently or on a choice of city tours. Visitors can stroll around the interior, crypt, and the courtyard’s sculptural altar and well—the latter where Stanislaus’ body was thrown and home to a natural spring believed to have healing powers.
To learn about the church’s history, visit as part of a private Kazimierz walking tour—most include time at the church as well the area’s other landmarks. Visitors with less time and energy can admire the church from the outside along with other Krakow points of interest on a private electric-cart tour.
Things to Know Before You Go
The Skalka Sanctuary will appeal to anyone interested in Krakow’s history and religious heritage.
Choose to visit on a private tour to delve deeper into the story of St. Stanislaus.
Admission is free, with a small entrance fee for the crypt.
There is a restroom at the church.
How to Get There
The Skalka Sanctuary stands on the outskirts of Krakow’s former Jewish quarter of Kazimierz, overlooking the River Vistula. The easiest way here is on foot—walk along Skaleczna street toward the river and you’ll see the church straight ahead. From Krakow Old Town, catch tram 52 or 62 from Teatr Slowackiego to Orzeszkowej—the church is 5 minutes’ walk from the latter.
When to Get There
The church is usually open Mondays–Saturdays from morning to afternoon and Sundays from early afternoon to late afternoon, although hours may vary. The crypt is open morning to late afternoon. The church is an active place of worship, so it may be closed during service. If you happen to be in Krakow on the first Sunday after May 8, head here to watch the procession of St. Stanislaus’ relics—they’re carried here every year from Wawel Cathedral.
Must-See Sights at the Skalka Sanctuary
Bishop Stanislaus was murdered in 1079 by King Boleslaw the Bold—inside the Romanesque church that predates the Skalka. Afterward, his body was quartered and thrown into the church’s well. After his canonization in 1253, Stanislaus became Krakow’s patron saint. The church altarpiece stands where he was slain and incorporates a tree stump where it’s said his body was dismembered.
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