Deals of the Week   Mediterranean Magic   Up to 50% OFF

Tours & Trips including Auschwitz

Find the right tour for you through Auschwitz. We've got 93 adventures going to Auschwitz, starting from just 3 days in length, and the longest tour is 28 days. The most popular month to go is August, which has the largest number of tour departures.

93 Auschwitz tour packages with 1,182 reviews

Krakow & Auschwitz Tour

In-depth Cultural Explorer

Krakow & Auschwitz

"I could have done that myself with better accommodations." Angelica, traveled in January 2019

Krakow, Auschwitz & Wieliczka Salt Mine - 4 Days Tour

In-depth Cultural Family Explorer Historical Christmas & New Year +3

Krakow, Auschwitz & Wieliczka Salt Mine - 4 Days

"Apart from a professional and knowledgeable delivery, he makes fantastic food recommendations." Amanda, traveled in November 2022

Krakow, Auschwitz, Enamel Factory & Wieliczka Salt Mine - 4 Days Tour

In-depth Cultural Family Explorer Historical +2

Krakow, Auschwitz, Enamel Factory & Wieliczka Salt Mine - 4 Days

"My hotel was perfectly selected and placed for my complete convenience. The Jewish Quarter on my doorstep, and Schindlers Enamel factory within a short walk as was the Old Town." Pauline, traveled in December 2022

6 days in Krakow and Szczawnica- private exclusive tour for 2 people  Tour

In-depth Cultural Family Sightseeing +1

6 days in Krakow and Szczawnica- private exclusive tour for 2 people

7 days in Krakow and Szczawnica- private exclusive tour for 3-4 people  Tour

7 days in Krakow and Szczawnica- private exclusive tour for 3-4 people

Highlights of Poland Tour

Highlights of Poland

"Well done to our tour guide Justyna and well done to Explore for putting this on in difficult times." Andrew, traveled in September 2020
  • 10% deposit on some dates

Pearls of Poland (for couples) Tour

In-depth Cultural Sightseeing Christmas & New Year +1

Pearls of Poland (for couples)

"I think this tour is just right for covering the best sites in Poland in a week's time. Our guides were excellent." Andrew, traveled in September 2020

Highlights of Southern Poland Tour

Explorer Coach / Bus Historical +1

Highlights of Southern Poland

"The Poland tour was excellent! Totally recommended!!" Maria, traveled in October 2021

Highlights of Poland (Classic, 10 Days) Tour

In-depth Cultural Family Explorer Sightseeing +2

Highlights of Poland (Classic, 10 Days)

"Poland is a great country, however the itinerary is much too structured and fast-paced." Jen, traveled in September 2019

Tailor-Made Private Trip to Southern Poland with Daily Departure Tour

In-depth Cultural Family Christmas & New Year +1

Tailor-Made Private Trip to Southern Poland with Daily Departure

  • Book With Flexibility View tour Download Brochure

Best of Poland (11 Days) Tour

In-depth Cultural Family Walking Adventure Explorer Sightseeing Historical +4

Best of Poland (11 Days)

"Very well organized, knowledgeable and accommodating. I loved the tour." Muna, traveled in September 2021

Portrait of Poland Tour

Portrait of Poland

"She was very knowledgeable about her country Poland and made our trip very successful." Shailesh, traveled in July 2019

Best of the East Tour

Best of the East

"It was good we enjoyed" Jaime, traveled in May 2023

Tailor-Made Private Poland Tour with Daily Departure Tour

Explorer Family Christmas & New Year +1

Tailor-Made Private Poland Tour with Daily Departure

Highlights of Poland (Small Groups, 10 Days) Tour

Highlights of Poland (Small Groups, 10 Days)

What people love about auschwitz tours.

Did their Krakow, Poland trip in December during the Christmas markets. Really a great trip and experience. Everything was very organized, had really good hotel near the square/old town (I booked the 3-star hotel, private room option with my husband), guides were very good & knowledgeable and the excursions/tours were very good. We also received a lot of extra information and recommendations for things to do and places to go (food and drink too) in our free time which was really nice and helpful. I was a bit nervous reading a few of the reviews here on Yelp but our experience was fantastic and nothing like what some others wrote in their reviews. Krakow was an amazing city and one of the most beautiful in Europe. Definitely recommend this trip and company.
An amazing tour of Krakow that includes breathtaking views of Old Town cathedrals and castles. A visit to Auschwitz - Birkenau and other historical sights connected to Schindler's List and the Jewish Ghetto. A great mix of history, culture, and architecture with time enough to explore on your own or rejuvenate in the comfort of your hotel.
I had a great first time experience of Krakow through this tour. My tour guide Seweryn was very friendly, flexible, organised and helpful and made the whole process very smooth. The trips to the mine, factory and camps were well laid out and gave me plenty of time for independent sightseeing and fun. If you want to come to Krakow I would highly recommend you do a trip this way!

Discover TourRadar

  • Central America Tours
  • Ireland Wild Atlantic Way Winter tours
  • Enchanted Europe (Westbound) 2023
  • Your Guide to Planning a Private Hike
  • Tour du Mont Blanc Cost: Self-Guided & Camping (2019 Edition)
  • Best 3 Week (21 Days) Japan Travel Itineraries
  • South Africa
  • El Salvador
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • North Macedonia
  • Czech Republic
  • Transnistria
  • Liechtenstein
  • North Cyprus
  • New Zealand
  • Map with posts
  • Alternative Guides
  • Architecture Guides
  • Cafe Guides
  • Itineraries
  • Neighborhood Guides
  • Travel Guides
  • Travel Tips
  • Photo Galleries
  • Photo Locations
  • Solo female travel
  • Train Travels
  • Work with me
  • Privacy Policy

Visiting Auschwitz – How to Plan the Auschwitz Tour

Last Updated on 26/04/2024 by kami

Visiting Auschwitz, albeit a very somber experience, is one of the must things to do in Poland. The largest Nazi Germany concentration and extermination camp during World War II, where over 1,3 million people lost their lives, needs no introduction. Conveniently located near Krakow , Auschwitz can be an easy addition to your Poland itinerary.

It took me almost 37 years to finally visit Auschwitz (although I’ve been to other Nazi Germany camps in Poland), and even if I knew very well what to expect, the place still overwhelmed me with its cruelty and tragedy. And I think everyone should plan a trip to Auschwitz to understand history better and see what people are capable of when the ideology brainwashes them. And, of course, to pay respect to all the unnecessary victims. It’s important to visit places like Auschwitz so we can do our best to prevent similar tragedies from happening in the future.

visiting auschwitz tour

If you are visiting Poland (especially Krakow , Warsaw , Katowice , or Wroclaw ), I prepared this guide to help you plan your Auschwitz tour without too much hassle. There are different ways to visit Auschwitz, but no matter which one you choose, be prepared for one of the most difficult yet necessary travel experiences of your life.

visiting auschwitz tour

Table of Contents

Where is Auschwitz

The former Nazi Germany Concentration Camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, is located in a town of around 37.000 inhabitants called Oświęcim in southern Poland. Krakow is less than 70 km away, and Katowice is 35 km away. Warsaw, the capital of Poland, is around 330 km away from Oświęcim.

A brief history of Auschwitz

Even if Auschwitz is known mainly as the extermination camp, it was established as a concentration camp in mid-1940. It was one of over 40 camps in Poland that were supposed to be a solution to the problem of overflowing prisons full of arrested locals. The first people were brought to Auschwitz on June 14th, 1940, from the prison in Tarnow.

Since 1942 Auschwitz has also been used as the extermination camp where Nazis implemented their plan to murder Jewish people from all over Europe. At the peak of its operation, in 1944, Auschwitz was divided into three parts: Auschwitz I (the oldest one, in the old Polish military barracks), Auschwitz II-Birkenau (the largest one, founded in 1941, the majority of victims were killed here), and Auschwitz III (this was a group of over 40 sub-camps created near industrial plants, made for work prisoners).

Numerous Polish villages were demolished, and locals were evicted to develop such a large institution. The camps were isolated from the outside world. The total area was around 40 square kilometers, including all three Auschwitz camps and the so-called “interest zone” used for the technical or supply background, offices, and barracks for Nazis.

Since Auschwitz had a strategic location on the front line, in August 1944, the camp’s liquidation began – the prisoners were taken to Germany, and the evidence of the crimes was covered up. The liberation of Auschwitz took place on January 27th, 1945, when around 7,5 thousand prisoners were still held there.

Altogether, in the almost four years of operation, over 1,3 million people lost their lives in Auschwitz; the majority were Jewish (around 1,1 million), but also Polish (about 150 hundred thousand), Roma people (23 thousand), and other nations.

In 1979 Auschwitz was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List – it is the only former Nazi concentration camp with that title in the world.

visiting auschwitz tour

How to visit Auschwitz

You can visit Auschwitz two ways: with a tour from where you are staying in Poland (most likely Krakow, Katowice, Warsaw, or Wroclaw) or independently, reaching the site by car or using public transport. Both options are doable; however, the tour is a slightly better one as everything will be taken care of for you.

There is a wide selection of tours to choose from that depart from Krakow as well as other mentioned cities. Most of them cover more or less the same things: pick-up from your accommodation, transportation to/from Auschwitz and back, the entrance ticket to the concentration camp, and the guided tour on-site.

When I visited Auschwitz, I arrived by train from Warsaw, with the change in Katowice. I was at the museum almost an hour before my guided tour of the site was supposed to start, and despite the poor weather (it was raining on that day), there was no place to hide and wait for the tour. Visitors were not allowed to enter the museum until a few minutes before the tour was about to start. Me and a few other unlucky visitors just stood near the trees, hiding under the umbrella and waiting for our time to enter the site. I can’t say it was a comfortable situation (but at least the weather worked perfectly well for such a sad place to visit). Recently, a new visitors center was opened so hopefully the situation is better.

When using public transport, you need to rely on the schedule of trains/buses and, just in case, plan to be at the site with some extra time ahead; hence a tour is a better option. Still, visiting Auschwitz is doable independently – I did it, and once the tour of the site started, it was really good.

visiting auschwitz tour

Visiting Auschwitz – practical information

Visiting Auschwitz memorial site is free of charge; however, I recommend joining the tour with the educator provided by the museum. They have a huge knowledge of the place and the tragedy that occurred here and can answer all the questions visitors always have. Tours are available in various languages: Polish, English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Czech, and Slovak.

Even if you decide to visit the site independently, you still need to book the entry pass – those with free entrance start in the afternoon. You can buy/reserve your ticket online at the website of Auschwitz Museum here.

Currently, the price for the tour with the educator is 80 PLN for Polish and 90 PLN for other languages. When booking the ticket, you must state your full name and surname – this will be checked later.

Since tickets can sell out quickly, booking one at least a month in advance is recommended. If there are no tickets left for the day you want to visit Auschwitz, you can join the organized tour from Krakow or other cities, as tour operators usually have tickets booked in advance. Due to the sensitive nature of the place, children under 14 years old should not visit Auschwitz Museum.

Once you have your ticket, you need to arrive at the Auschwitz visitors center 30 minutes before your tour starts to go through the security check (it’s rather thorough, similar to the airport), have your ticket inspected (remember to have the ID or passport with you), get the headset for the tour and meet your group. You are allowed to have a bag or backpack with a maximum dimension of 30x20x10 cm; any larger luggage must be left in the paid lockers.

Auschwitz Museum is open every day except January 1st, December 25th, and Easter Sunday. Opening hours vary depending on the month and are as follows:

  • 7:30-14:00 in December
  • 7:30-15:00 in January and November
  • 7:30-16:00 in February
  • 7:30-17:00 in March and October
  • 7:30-18:00 in April, May, and September
  • 7:30-19:00 in June, July, and August

The closing time means the last entrance – after that, you are allowed to stay on-site for an hour and a half. However, if you want to see Auschwitz Museum properly, you need at least 3,5 hours for that – that’s also how long the standard tour with the educator lasts. It is usually divided equally between Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II- Birkenau. A free shuttle bus runs between the two sites every few minutes.

Taking pictures and making videos is allowed in Auschwitz, for individual use, except in two places: the hall with the hair of Victims (block nr 4) and the basements of Block 11. Your educator will remind you not to take pictures there.

Remember what sort of place you are visiting and behave there with respect. It might be obvious for most, but I can’t count how many times I’ve read news about inappropriate behavior in Auschwitz and other similar sites in Poland, so I think it’s worth reminding this is not your typical tourist attraction but a place of one of the greatest tragedy that ever happened in the world.

visiting auschwitz tour

Getting to Auschwitz independently

If you decide to visit Auschwitz on your own, you must get to the visitors’ center, where your tour will start. The new visitors center, which opened just recently, is located at 55 Więźniów Oświęcimia Street in Oświęcim ( here is the exact location ). If you drive there, there is a large parking lot where you can leave your car before visiting the museum.

If you use public transport, there are both trains and buses you can take to reach Oświęcim. I recommend trains as they are slightly faster and more comfortable; however, some buses stop next to the museum, so that’s convenient. You can check all the connections on this website , where you can also find the location of the bus stop in Oświęcim (there can be three different ones).

The train station in Oświęcim is located at Powstańców Śląskich Street, some 20 minutes walking from the Auschwitz museum. It’s a straightforward way; you can check the map with the directions here . I recommend catching the train that gives you at least an hour between arriving at Oświęcim and when your tour starts.

visiting auschwitz tour

Auschwitz tour from Krakow

Numerous Auschwitz tours depart from Krakow, so you will easily find the one that suits your itinerary and needs. Here are some recommended ones:

  • Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum and Memorial Guided Tour from Krakow
  • Auschwitz & Birkenau – Fully Guided Tour from Krakow
  • Auschwitz-Birkenau Guided Tour with Private Transport from Kraków
  • Auschwitz-Birkenau Guided Tour by Private Transport from Krakow

You can also combine visiting Auschwitz with Wieliczka Salt Mine , another UNESCO-listed site near Krakow and a must-visit place in Poland. Here are the tours that go to both places in one day:

  • Day Trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau and Wieliczka Salt Mine from Krakow including Lunch
  • Full-Day Tour of Auschwitz and Wieliczka Salt Mine from Krakow
  • Auschwitz-Birkenau and Salt Mine Tour with private transport from Krakow
  • Combined: Auschwitz Birkenau and Salt Mine private chauffeur from Krakow

If you decide to go to Auschwitz from Krakow on your own, you can take the train from the main train station to Oświęcim. They are rather frequent, more or less every hour, and the journey takes a bit over an hour (depending on the connection, the longest one is 1h20min).

If you want to take the bus, they depart from the MDA bus station, next to the main train station. The price for trains and buses is similar, between 15 and 20 PLN, although trains tend to be cheaper and faster. You can check all the connections and buy a ticket here .

visiting auschwitz tour

Auschwitz tour from Warsaw

Even if Warsaw, the capital of Poland, is located over 300 km away from Oświęcim, it is possible to go for a one-day Auschwitz tour. However, you can expect a long day, and a large part of it will be spent traveling. But if you are visiting Warsaw only, Auschwitz can be a good addition to your Poland itinerary, so you can better understand the country’s complex history.

Here are some of the recommended Auschwitz tours from Warsaw:

  • From Warsaw Auschwitz and Krakow one day tour by train with pick up and drop off
  • One day tour to Auschwitz-Birkenau from Warsaw with private transport

Going for the day trip from Warsaw to Auschwitz independently is also possible using trains. You can take the 6 am train to Katowice and then change for the train to Oświęcim, arriving in the town around 10:30. If you decide to do that, you can book your Auschwitz tour for 11:30 or 12:00. On the way back, you can catch the train after 16:00 from Oświęcim to Katowice, and after changing for the train to Warsaw, you will be in the capital after 20:00.

visiting auschwitz tour

Auschwitz tour from Katowice

Since Katowice is less than 40 km from Auschwitz, it’s easy to go for a day trip. You need to take the local train to Oświęcim, it takes less than 50 minutes, and the connections are more or less every hour.

Or you can go for a tour, here are the Auschwitz tours from Katowice:

  • Auschwitz – Birkenau from Katowice
  • Auschwitz & Birkenau English guided tour by private transport from Katowice
  • Auschwitz tour from Wroclaw

Wroclaw is another popular place to visit in Poland, and since it’s located around 230 km from Oświęcim, you can go for an Auschwitz tour from Wroclaw too. If you decide to do it independently, you can take the train to Katowice and then change for the local train to Oświęcim. A one-way trip should take you less than 4 hours.

Or you can go for a tour; here are the recommended ones from Wroclaw:

  • Auschwitz-Birkenau Tour from Wrocław
  • Private Full-Day Tour to Auschwitz-Birkenau from Wroclaw

visiting auschwitz tour

Auschwitz Museum Tour

As for the museum itself, here is what you can expect.

You will start in the oldest part of the concentration camp – Auschwitz I, where the infamous gate with the sign “Arbeit macht frei” (meaning “Work Sets You Free”) is located. Here, you will visit numerous barracks where inmates were kept – now you can see different exhibitions there, showing the reality of Auschwitz and halls with personal belongings taken from arriving prisoners – luggage, shoes, glasses, etc., or hair of Victims. You will learn all about cruel practices here, including medical experiments or torture.

Visiting this part of Auschwitz museum is a very somber experience, and it’s really difficult to comprehend the tragedy that happened in this very place.

Besides the barracks in Auschwitz I, you will also see where the camp commander lived or the first crematorium where Nazis started their experiments with killing using gas. In this part of the Auschwitz tour, you can take pictures everywhere except the two places in Blocks 4 and 11 – they will be clearly marked, and your educator will remind you about this restriction.

The visit to Auschwitz I takes around 1,5 hours. Afterward, together with your group and educator, you will take the shuttle bus to Auschwitz II-Birkenau, located some 3 km away.

visiting auschwitz tour

Auschwitz II-Birkenau is where around 90% of victims died. It is a huge area that worked kind of like the killing factory, with four gas chambers and crematoriums. This is also where most prisoners arrived – you most likely know the view of the railway tracks and brick gate – that’s Auschwitz II-Birkenau. This part of the visit is mostly outdoors.

You will walk around the area, see the remnants of the camp, visit some barracks inside, and learn all about the horrific tragedy that happened here. When Auschwitz I has a more intimate, even claustrophobic feeling, Auschwitz II-Birkenau can overwhelm you with its scale and enormity.

You will spend around 1,5 hours here, too; afterward, you can take the shuttle bus back to the visitors center when you started your tour.

visiting auschwitz tour

Final thoughts on visiting Auschwitz

Even though I’ve lived in Poland almost my whole life, and Auschwitz has been a familiar topic since I remember, it took me nearly 37 years to finally visit the place. Before I was in different Nazi Germany sites in Poland, mostly in Majdanek in Lublin, so I didn’t feel the need to visit Auschwitz too. But I don’t regret the decision to go there eventually.

You can read and learn about the place, but nothing can prepare you for visiting Auschwitz. Some areas look familiar (after all, pictures of the “Arbeit macht frei” sign or Birkenau gate are present everywhere), but you will still be overwhelmed by the place and seeing it in real life. It’s hard to comprehend the cruelty and tragedy that happened here, and dealing with all the thoughts invading your mind afterward can take a while. It can be one of the most difficult-to-understand places you will ever visit.

Still, despite it all, I think everyone should go to Auschwitz to see where fanaticism and totalitarianism can lead and why we should avoid them at all costs.

visiting auschwitz tour

Further reading

I published many articles about Poland that you might find useful when planning your trip there. Here are some of them:

  • 37 Amazing Things to Do in Krakow, Poland
  • 20 Great Places to Visit As Day Trips from Warsaw, Poland
  • 17 Amazing Things to Do in Lublin, Poland
  • The Complete Guide to Visiting Slownski National Park, Poland
  • Visit Grudziadz – One of the Hidden Gems of Poland
  • 19 Amazing Things to Do in Gdansk, Poland
  • Visit Sandomierz, Poland – One of the Prettiest Towns in the Country
  • Visiting Malbork Castle, Poland – the Largest Castle in the World
  • 25 Amazing Things to do in Wroclaw, Poland
  • and many more!

If you are looking for articles about a specific destination – check out the map with all the articles I’ve published (and their locations). You can also join my Facebook group about traveling in Central Europe and ask your questions there.

Travel Resources

You can find the best accommodation options at Booking . They have many discounts and excellent customer service. Click here to look for the place to stay in Poland

Never travel without travel insurance , you never know what might happen and better safe than sorry. You can check the insurance policy for Poland here.

I recommend joining organized tours to get to know the place better and to visit more places during your trip. You can find a great selection of tours at Get Your Guide – click here .

For the end I left a few announcements that might interest you:

  • Sign up to my newsletter or follow me on Bloglovin to get updates about the new posts
  • Join my Facebook group about Eastern Europe, the Balkans and former USSR and connect with fellow travellers and enthusiasts of these regions – just click here!
  • I’ve included a few handy links of services and products I personally like and use so you can plan your own trip to Poland too. They are often affiliate links. This means I will get a small commission if you book/purchase anything through my links, at no extra costs for you. Thank you!


visiting auschwitz tour

If you enjoyed that post why don't you share it with your friends? That would mean so much to me! Also be sure to join 30.000+ fellow travelers and follow me on Facebook , Twitter , or Instagram for travel updates and even more pictures! If you don't want to miss new posts sign up to my newsletter or follow on Bloglovin !

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

No Comments

Leave a reply cancel reply.

Sign me up for the newsletter!

Let’s become friends!

Join me on Facebook for even more travel updates!

Kami and the rest of the world
  • all_inclusive Packages
  • directions_car Transfers
  • people About us
  • mail Contact
  • account_box Login
  • assignment Guide
  • question_answer FAQ

attach_money Currency

phone Customer Support

  • shopping_cart

trips to poland and auschwitz

Auschwitz Package



Save your money and time with the Auschwitz Package designed for those who want to see one of the most visited places in Poland with a comfortable two-way transportation, airport transfers, and a recommended minimum 2-night stay in a verified top-rated hotel at one low price.

You will be safely transported from and to the airport in a comfortable and modern car. Our seasoned expert guides will show you around Auschwitz Death Camp visited by over 2 mln people yearly. You won’t have to worry about the transportation to Auschwitz and back as it’s already included in the price. Additionally, Comfort Tour Option ensures extra 15 minutes of free time after the tour and a pickup from one of the central meeting points close to your hotel. Our package wouldn’t be complete without a choice of our carefully selected and personally verified hotels where you can unwind and regain your strength after the tour.

Press BUILD THIS PACKAGE to choose the hotel and dates that suit you best, click Add to Basket, and enjoy!

Attractions included

trips to poland and auschwitz

Auschwitz Tour from Krakow

trips to poland and auschwitz

Nothing can prepare you for the influx of emotions that will run through your heart as you explore the camps of Auschwitz and Birkenau - the only death camp on the UNESCO World Heritage List where pure evil resided for 5 long years. Each exhibition in the museum adds another sting in your heart and makes you realise what atrocities humans are capable of in their thirst for power.

To help you understand what really happened in the most recognizable place of the Holocaust in the early 1940s, we created the tour that will allow you to see the barracks, crematoria, and gas chambers which Nazis used for the mass extermination of women, men, children, and elderly who weren’t able to do hard labour after an exhausting journey in cattle wagons. We won’t miss the exhibitions with personal belongings, objects of everyday use, and pictures of individual prisoners. Since the war ended and the museum was opened for the public, millions of people have come here to pay tribute and shed tears over the innocents who perished in Auschwitz and Birkenau. All of us, without exception, should brace up and pay a visit to this sobering place for the sake of future generations to make sure no one forgets what hatred and totalitarian regime result in.

Transfers included

Krakow Balice Airport to Krakow City (Shared)

Krakow Balice Airport to Krakow City (Shared)

Krakow Balice Airport to Krakow City (Shared)

  • Pick up and drop off at your hotel

ON ARRIVAL: Our driver will be waiting for you at the arrival gate, holding a signboard with your name.

FLIGHT DELAY: You shouldn't worry about flight delays. Provide us with correct details and we will keep track of your flight status adjusting the pick up accordingly.

ABOUT TRANSFER: This will be tranfer from Krakow Balice Airport John Paul II to any given address within Krakow city borders. The transfer to the centre of Krakow will take approximately 30 minutes.

ABOUT AIRPORT: Balice Airport (KRK) is the main Krakow airport located about 10 miles away from the city. Most flights to Krakow arrive at this Airport.

Krakow City (Shared) to Krakow Balice Airport

Krakow City (Shared) to Krakow Balice Airport

Krakow City (Shared) to Krakow Balice Airport

Hotels included

Kazimierz Hotel

Kazimierz Hotel

Kazimierz Hotel


Hotel offers accommodation in 8 single rooms, 25 double rooms and 2 triple ones.

Cancellation Policy

Changes made 96 hours or more before your arrival date are subject to NO penalty. Cancellations made 96 hours or more before your arrival date are subject to NO penalty. Cancellations or changes made 96 hours or less before your arrival date are subject to a 1 Night Room penalty.

The Hotel has got own guarded parking, 5 min away by walk. the cost is: 40pln (about £9) per day

Our Customers

Greg, aberdeen.

Used Escape2Poland for hotel, transfer and trip. Can't fault them, punctual, polite and professional. Drivers very knowledgeable. Trip ran like clockwork, no problems at all, would definitely recommend.

Miriam, Glasgow

Escape2poland provided exactly what they promised. Would recommend.

Brad, Warrington

hotel was ok for our needs, tour was well organised, swift airport transfers with professional drivers - I recommend

Charlie, Paisley

Perfect organisation, hotel very nice and located close to the old town pefectly timed pick up from the airport. Cannot fault anything

Jessica, Dublin

The hotel was in a great location. We were also close enough to the main square to walk to. Transport for the tour went smoothly, guide had great knowledge of Auschwitz history., couldn't be better.

Victoria, Edinburgh

We were satisfied, the driver was a few minutes late but we contacted emergency number and they provided information. Everything else went smooth.

Jonathan, Leeds

Headphones were a great idea, silvia our guide was fantastic and didnt mind answering any questions we had, dvd on the transfer bus was interesting. The Metropolitan Hotel was in an amazing location we could walk to almost everything. The staff was the best I have ever seen very helpful and nice. Over all I loved the hotel and staff and would stay there again. Very punctual, having the transfers included made our first city break very easy and enjoyable.

Claire, Liverpool

The tour run smoothly and the pick up was on time. The hotel was very clean and the location was excellent. We left very early in the morning to go back to the airport and they provided us with a packed breakfast.There was some noise from the road outside, but this was not really a problem.

Andreas, Manningtree

If you want to see Auschwitz & Birkenau, this is the company to use! Drivers - always on time, friendly & helpful. Apart from the tours the company also offers competitive airport transfers and comfortable, modern hotels. They totally take the stress out of visiting a foreign country, it was thoroughly enjoyable and I thank them for it! I highly recommend Escape2Poland!

Pat, Sheffield

We booked the Auschwitz trip, airport transfer and hotel through escape to Poland. Will book through them again! The Hotel we stayed in is fantastic value for money! All the staff were friendly and so helpful. Loved Krakow and will definitely go back and stay at the same hotel.

Karen, London

We thoroughly enjoyed every minute of our trip! The hotel was amazing. The staff were friendly and helpful and the rooms were clean and comfortable. The trips to Auschwitz/Birkenau was well organised and the tour guide was very knowledgeable. Although obviously a sad visit I think everyone should witness the camps and it should never be forgotten. Thank you very much to Escape2poland for a memorable trip.


Before you visit

Are flights included in the cost of the package.

No, Escape2Poland does not include airfare. Flights must be purchased separately. If you need our advice on the best flight options, please contact us.

Is two-way airport transfer included in the package?

Yes, the driver will be waiting for you in the arrival hall carrying a placard with your name on it. At the end of your stay, our driver will be waiting for you at your accommodation door at the pre-arranged time ready to transport you to the Krakow airport.

Are the airport transfers only private or shared?

The airport transfers included in the package are shared. If there isn’t anyone else travelling on the same flight, you will be the only one we pick up.

What happens if my flight is delayed?

Please call or text us on the emergency number (+48 535 64 54 54) as soon as possible.

When will I receive my vouchers with the information about the tour(s)?

Tour vouchers with all details will be emailed to you 3 days before your tour date.

How long does the tour last?

The journey from Warsaw to Oświęcim, Auschwitz Museum takes approx. 4,5 - 5 h each way however the tour with a guide lasts around 3,5 hours and includes Auschwitz I & Birkenau. In total the entire trip is up to 12 - 13 h.

Can I book more tours closer to my arrival?

Yes, you may book more tours by making a separate booking any time before your arrival. Ideally you should book at least 7 days before your arrival so there is enough time to make the arrangements without hassle.

Can I get an upgrade of my hotel room?

Yes, room upgrades are available at most of our hotels for an additional fee.

Do I need airport transfer vouchers?

No, the driver may ask you for your reference number and this will do.

Where is the meeting point for the tour?

The standard tour includes one meeting point is in front of the Radisson Blu Sobieski. We do always try to provide direct pickup service from your hotel in case of Premium & Private option. In case of any traffic restrictions near your accommodation, we will inform you and assigned the closest meeting point.

What time does the Auschwitz Tour start and end?

We organize the Auschwitz Tour daily in the mornings and afternoons depending on availability. The tour start time may vary. Its length remains the same and it is around 7h including transfer time.

Is there any lunch break during the tour?

Yes! There is a break between Auschwitz I visit and Birkenau when we give you about 10 - 15 min to yourself


trips to poland and auschwitz

Call today from 8:30am-7.30pm

Please only call a number listed on our website or you can find a travel agent near you .

Online check in Add Holiday Essentials

  • Reasons to join! Explore the benefits of myJet2
  • Bookings View and manage your bookings
  • Offers and competitions Exclusive deals and giveaways!
  • Holiday shortlists Save and share holidays
  • Group quotes Quotes for 10+ passengers
  • Personal details Edit your saved information
  • Security View and update security details
  • Friends and family See and manage friends and family

Download our FREE app

My Shortlists

Save and share holidays.

You can now access Shortlists through a myJet2 account. So, as well as being able to save, share and compare holidays, you'll also benefit from…

  • Save and share shortlists
  • Exclusive discounts
  • Tailored holidays inspiration

Already a member? Log in

Returning to shortlists

Don't worry, we'll never post anything without your permission

{{ errors.first('shortlist-menu-sign-in-email') }}

{{ errors.first('shortlist-menu-sign-in-password') }}

Error occurred while trying to login using Facebook. Please try again, or alternatively you can create a Jet2holidays account using your preferred email address.

Facebook Declined Email Error

Sorry, we were unable to log you in. Please check your email and password are correct.

Forgotten your password?

New to shortlists

{{ errors.first('shortlist-menu-sign-up-email') }}

{{ errors.first('shortlist-menu-sign-up-password') }}

{{ errors.first('shortlist-menu-sign-up-password-confirm') }}

Sorry, we were unable to sign you up.

This email address is already being used. You may have previously registered or have a myJet2 account.

By submitting this form I am agreeing to receive marketing emails from Jet2Holidays. You can let us know at any time if you no longer want to receive emails by unsubscribing here .

We process your data in accordance to our Privacy Policy .

Forgotten Password

{{ errors.first('shortlist-menu-forgotten-password-email') }}

{{ successMessageFormatted }}

Sorry, we were unable to find your email address.

  • Things to do
  • Places to stay
  • Destinations

{{ errors.first('departureAirports') }}

No matches found

Show more results

{{ errors.first('destinations') }}

{{ errors.first('departureDate') }}

{{ refinedMultipleDurationsTooltipText }}

{{ errors.first('duration') }}

  • {{ day.dayNumber | padNumberWithZero }} {{ }}
  • Unavailable

{{ validationMessages.ageRequired }}

Group Bookings:

trips to poland and auschwitz

Visit Auschwitz

trips to poland and auschwitz

Nearby accommodation

Novotel Krakow City West

Novotel Krakow City West

Krakow City, Krakow

Based on 1683 reviews

50.7 Km to Visit Auschwitz

  • Simple yet modern
  • Great for families
  • Indoor swimming pool
  • 400m from the nearest bus stop
  • 3.2km from Main Market Square

Emaus Apartments Krakow

Emaus Apartments Krakow

Based on 230 reviews

52.2 Km to Visit Auschwitz

  • Bright and modern apartments
  • 1.8km from Wawel Castle
  • 1.7km from the Main Market Square
  • 2.4km from Kazimierz Jewish District
  • Perfect for couples, friends & families

Plantonia Aparthotel

  • Glasgow Intl, Fri 10 Jan 2025
  • 3 Nights, Room Only
  • 2 Adults, 0 Children

Plantonia Aparthotel

Based on 107 reviews

52.6 Km to Visit Auschwitz

  • Sustainable concept hotel
  • Modern style
  • 1km from Wawel Castle

Nearby things to do



17.9 Km to Visit Auschwitz - Map

Ojców National Park

Ojców National Park

47.4 Km to Visit Auschwitz - Map

Kosciuszko Mound

Kosciuszko Mound

50.4 Km to Visit Auschwitz - Map

Explore some of our great destinations...

  • Holidays (59)
  • City Breaks (34)
  • Villas (39)
  • Formentera (2 Resorts)
  • Ibiza (19 Resorts)
  • Majorca (43 Resorts)
  • Menorca (23 Resorts)
  • Bourgas Area (6 Resorts)
  • Fuerteventura (8 Resorts)
  • Gran Canaria (12 Resorts)
  • Lanzarote (8 Resorts)
  • Tenerife (14 Resorts)
  • Jersey (7 Resorts)
  • Dubrovnik Coast (18 Resorts)
  • Pula and Istrian Coast (9 Resorts)
  • Split and Dalmatian Coast (22 Resorts)
  • Larnaca Area (5 Resorts)
  • Paphos Area (8 Resorts)
  • Copenhagen Christmas Markets
  • South of France (6 Resorts)
  • Berlin Christmas Markets
  • Cologne Christmas Markets
  • Alonissos (7 Resorts)
  • Athens Coast (8 Resorts)
  • Corfu (36 Resorts)
  • Crete (Chania Area) (18 Resorts)
  • Crete (Heraklion Area) (18 Resorts)
  • Halkidiki (23 Resorts)
  • Kalymnos Island (5 Resorts)
  • Kefalonia (18 Resorts)
  • Kos (9 Resorts)
  • Lefkas (11 Resorts)
  • Lesvos (6 Resorts)
  • Parga Area (5 Resorts)
  • Peloponnese (14 Resorts)
  • Rhodes (17 Resorts)
  • Santorini (17 Resorts)
  • Skiathos (13 Resorts)
  • Skopelos (3 Resorts)
  • Symi (3 Resorts)
  • Thessaloniki
  • Zante (15 Resorts)
  • Lake Garda (15 Resorts)
  • Sardinia (13 Resorts)
  • Sicily (11 Resorts)
  • Sorrento Area (7 Resorts)
  • Tuscany (11 Resorts)
  • Venetian Riviera (1 Resort)
  • Malta and Gozo (21 Resorts)
  • Montenegro (Dubrovnik Airport) (5 Resorts)
  • Montenegro (Tivat Airport) (9 Resorts)
  • Agadir (3 Resorts)
  • Marrakech Area (2 Resorts)
  • Gdansk Christmas Markets
  • Algarve (24 Resorts)
  • Madeira (9 Resorts)
  • Costa Blanca (6 Resorts)
  • Costa Brava (15 Resorts)
  • Costa Calida (Alicante) (2 Resorts)
  • Costa de Almeria (6 Resorts)
  • Costa del Sol (15 Resorts)
  • Costa Dorada (9 Resorts)
  • Sitges (1 Resort)
  • Antalya Area (10 Resorts)
  • Bodrum Area (11 Resorts)
  • Dalaman Area (13 Resorts)
  • Izmir Area (5 Resorts)
  • Bodrum Area
  • Costa Blanca
  • Costa Brava
  • Costa Calida (Alicante)
  • Costa del Sol
  • Crete (Chania Area)
  • Crete (Heraklion Area)
  • Larnaca Area
  • Paphos Area
  • Dalaman Area
  • Dubrovnik Coast
  • Fuerteventura
  • Gran Canaria
  • Malta and Gozo
  • Peloponnese
  • Pula and Istrian Coast
  • Sorrento Area
  • Split and Dalmatian Coast

We don’t have any villas in this resort right now. But we’ve hundreds available in other destinations, so find your perfect one now .

trips to poland and auschwitz

Please enter your details

{{ errors.first('email') }}

By submitting this form, you are agreeing to receive marketing emails from Jet2holidays. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Looking for something else?

Looking to book.

  • Beach holidays
  • City breaks
  • Villa holidays
  • Indulgent Escapes
  • Free Child Places
  • Flights only
  • All Inclusive holidays
  • Family holidays
  • Adult Only holidays
  • Single parent holidays
  • Solo holidays
  • Group holidays
  • Last-minute holidays
  • Great-value deals

Need more information?

  • Our destinations
  • Reviews and awards
  • Assisted Travel
  • Essential holiday information
  • Package Travel and Linked Travel Arrangements Regulations 2018
  • Ways to Pay
  • Affiliate Program
  • Influencer Hub

Already booked?

  • Manage My Booking
  • Online check-in
  • Travel Help Hub
  • Health and safety
  • Latest travel information
  • Airport information
  • Holiday Essentials
  • Travel Insurance
  • Onboard shopping
  • In-flight champagne
  • Airport fast track
  • Airport hotels

The Emotional Trip To Auschwitz In Poland And What It Taught Me

(Guest post) I just bucked up after my Auschwitz tour. What’s more, I was traveling alone for the first time in my life. Now it’s time to share my remarkable experiences with you guys. I guess my main intention is to encourage all of you who haven’t been there yet. Here’s what the trip to Auschwitz has taught me and what can teach many of you as well. 

Politics can be brutally inhuman

I have never been a politics enthusiast, maybe it’s because my dad was the one to like it. He was always complaining about politicians and arguing with the opposition followers. Perhaps, that’s why I started to associate it with the feeling of aggression and violence.

Things that I saw in the Auschwitz Memorial Museum  were just a perfect example of political cruelty and inhumanity.

Although I learned about the extermination camps and the Holocaust at school, I was overwhelmed and shocked anyway. It’s unbelievable how powerful the ideology can be, no matter how cruel and irrational it is. That’s even more unbelievable how  MANY people were blindly taking part in those atrocious actions.

Looking at all the buildings and machines that were used for mass extermination you start to wonder, how much effort have people put in its construction. Was the fear or the money that was controlling them – I don’t have an idea.

What I’m sure about, is that the power of Nazi ideology can be the proof, that politics are dangerous and can easily lead us to  SELF-DESTRUCTION. 

trips to poland and auschwitz

Art can survive everywhere

I guess that was the most unexpected thing that I found out about the Auschwitz camp. The prisoners were living in extremely poor conditions ,  they were treated like rubbish, they were exhausted. 

For all that, they created the art.  There was the place in a camp, called  Lagermuseum , where all the antiques, coins, and works of art, robbed from the prisoners, were held. What’s more, the Nazis kept paintings that they ordered in a camp there. They commissioned those who had the talent  to paint landscapes or illustrations for the German legends .

Prisoners were drawing instructional sketches and plans of the camp for SS officers. However, making art that was not commissioned by the Germans was strictly forbidden.

Regardless of this prohibition, prisoners were secretly making the note cards or small cult objects. They even managed to paint portraits and depictions of everyday life in a camp.

These works are precious, as they reflect the prisoner’s feelings, that was dulled by Nazis so strongly. I was truly happy that the art and  SENSITIVITY  is something that one cannot take away from you, even if you fear him. 

Ignorance comes too easy

What you must be prepared for, are the explicit photographs, videos, and places. Sometimes it’s even hard to look at without crying or repulsion.  Gas chambers, crematoria, engines of torture, or barracks  create the dreadful picture of the  hell that prisoners had to go through every day.  

Looking into the exhausted and suffering eyes of people at the photos, you start to wonder how they could feel. Except for the feeling of rage, I felt ashamed as well. I’m kind of a nagging person, not very patient as well. I used to complain about my life, that it’s unfair, that I don’t have that, I can’t go there.

Looking at the prisoner’s photographs, I realized that it’s pure ignorance on my part. What seemed the misery for me, would be an unmixed blessing for those people in Auschwitz. Maybe it’s kind of cliche, but I felt that we need to be happier, just because of the  FREEDOM  we have.

Awareness is extremely important in our life

The events that happened in Auschwitz can’t repeat in the future – everyone in the world should know that. Although it seems to be obvious, it takes a little bit more to become truly aware of that. One thing is to visit the museum and the other is to  deepen the knowledge .

I found out that the Museum in Auschwitz organizes  summer academies and conferences  concerning education about Auschwitz and Holocaust. What’s more, there are different programs for children, teenagers, and school teachers. 

It implants a  REFLECTION  and discussion about history in our modern society. However, it’s not only about remote events in the past. Most of all, it’s about the future and the effort that we must take to avoid its repetition. I made some research after I came back and I was pleasantly surprised that there is a lively debate going on among young people.

On the   official Facebook page of the Museum , you can check all the current information and be up to date with going on events.

The world can be a connected place

The Auschwitz Memorial Museum receives millions of guests from around the world every year.

During my 4 hours visit, I passed by people from probably most of the nationalities on Earth. Although it was pretty cold by then, crowds were waiting for their guides and an unforgettable experience.

This place that was the symbol of horror, inhumanity, and the world’s indifference during the war, today is the spot CONNECTING  the whole world. No wonder why it’s on the  UNESCO list of World Heritage Site.  

The Museum is in great condition and you can see so much effort put in the maintenance of the exhibitions. It’s one of the best museums that I have ever seen.

Lonely travel is an entirely different experience

It was the very  first time when I traveled alone.  My friend had an accident and he had to stay in a hospital for some time. I wasn’t sure if it’s a good idea to go alone – I thought it could be boring and stressful.

Fortunately, I’d decided to do that, and it was a great choice for me. Now I know that it’s even better than I was traveling to Auschwitz alone.

This place was truly  thought-provoking for me and I didn’t feel like talking to anybody after that experience. After the Auschwitz tour, I went to Krakow for a few days and enjoyed it a lot as well. I’ve met many more people than I usually meet when I have company.

Traveling alone somehow can force to mix with others, just to survive in a foreign country. It makes you to  EXPLORE more for sure!

Best way to get to Auschwitz

I can recommend going to  Auschwitz from Krakow with a private tour  that provides a  guide.  I guess I wouldn’t experience as half as I did if I didn’t go with the tour. The company that I traveled with was KrakowDirect – it was a smooth ride with a professional driver. 

You can also take a  bus or a train to Oswiecim . They leave quite often from the Krakow main station and the ride takes slightly more than 1 hour each way. 

If you have enough time, I do recommend  visiting Krakow as well.  It’s a very vibrant city that fascinated me with its artistic spirit. There are also plenty of monuments, many of them from the Middle Ages. 

To sum up,  everyone should visit Auschwitz-Birkenau,  I’m sure of that. No matter if you’re faint of heart or not interested in history. There’s something in this place that touches you deep inside. Except for gaining valuable history knowledge, this place can allow you to look through yourself and your emotions.  

Train tracks to Auschwitz

Charlotte Delbo and the women of Convoy 31000: how researching their stories led me to a forgotten subcamp and Nazi lies in the Auschwitz archive

trips to poland and auschwitz

PhD Researcher, Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures and Holocaust Research Institute, Royal Holloway University of London

Disclosure statement

Kate Ferry-Swainson receives funding from the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council's technē Doctoral training partnership.

Royal Holloway provides funding as a member of The Conversation UK.

View all partners

The taxi bumped along a track just off the main road heading south from the Auschwitz Museum, past a row of bungalows with straggly November gardens. It crunched to a halt in front of a pair of rusty gates, hanging half open, their padlock dangling. Dilapidated and overgrown greenhouses could be seen inside.

Stepping out of the taxi, I pushed open the gates and entered. I approached the greenhouses, trying to reconstruct in my imagination the forced labourers from the nearby Nazi concentration and extermination camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau who built and worked in this place from 1943.

This was the remains of the Rajsko subcamp , one of over 40 satellite concentration camps of Auschwitz.

It was once a Nazi experimental botanical station and was intended to boost the work of the IG Farben factory by growing and extracting latex from a type of Russian dandelion ( Taraxacum kok-saghyz ) to meet the Nazis’ ever-increasing war need for rubber. The camp was the dream-child of Heinrich Himmler , a key architect of Hitler’s genocidal programmes.

Despite Himmler’s intentions, Rajsko produced no rubber, and was liquidated by the Nazis in 1945. The botanical station sank into disrepair before being turned into a private commercial garden centre. It was largely forgotten about and was very hard to find – even the customer service staff I spoke to at the Auschwitz Museum had no knowledge of it.

Much of the village of Rajsko was cleared for the SS to establish this botanical research station as well as an SS Hygiene Institut . This was a clinic which screened blood and other bodily fluids for signs of typhus (a major killer in the camps), malaria and syphilis.

Later, notorious Nazi physician Josef Mengele, who had an interest in racial genetics , carried out experiments on Roma and Sinti twins at the SS Hygiene Institut, and from May 1944 subjects for Mengele’s experiments were also picked from the unloading ramps at Auschwitz.

A greenhouse covered in overgrown plants.

Despite this history, there were no signposts, guidebooks, or visitor centres at Rajsko. This concentration camp has been largely forgotten as a historic site. Finding it had been far from easy. After letting myself in, I came upon the elderly husband and wife who owned the garden centre, bent over wheelbarrows and plant pots. As I speak no Polish and they had no English, we communicated through their English-speaking son, who the woman called on her mobile.

I stated my purpose and, via him, they permitted me to look around. The son, a man in his late 30s, arrived a short time later, back from his night shift and ready for bed. I did not catch his name, but he was kind enough to take me through a wall of overgrown bushes to the site’s central building from which the greenhouses extend in ordered rows to north and south. It stands locked and inaccessible.

There, written in Polish and affixed to the wall, obscured by trees, is a plaque. It is the only on-site information and commemoration of Rajsko as a Nazi forced-labour camp. It reads:

From 1942–45, the Rajsko garden area was a place of slave labour for male and female prisoners of the Auschwitz concentration camp.

A plaque writtenn in Polish.

The hunt for Convoy 31000

I went to Rajsko at the end of 2023 as part of a doctoral research trip to the Auschwitz archive. I was on the trail of Convoy 31000. This was the only transport to Auschwitz-Birkenau that was made up entirely of 230 women deported from France for political activities, rather than for being Jewish.

But only snapshots of them have been captured by the archival record.

What we do know is that the group was made up of women from across society, and included teachers, students, chemists, writers, seamstresses and housewives. There was a singer at the Paris Opera, a midwife, and a dental surgeon. These brave women had distributed anti-Nazi leaflets, printed subversive newspapers, hid resisters and Jews, transported weapons, and conveyed clandestine messages.

The youngest was Rosie Floc'h, a schoolgirl of 15 who had scrawled “V” for victory on the walls of her school while the eldest, a widow in her sixties named Marie Mathilde Chaux, had harboured members of the French Resistance. The Gestapo and the French police hunted down all these women and imprisoned them in Fort de Romainville on the outskirts of Paris, before putting them on a train – Convoy 31000 – to Auschwitz in 1943.

Black and white image of a train carriage outside Auschwitz

In particular, I was seeking traces of the people and places which Charlotte Delbo records in her literature. Delbo was a non-Jewish participant in the French Resistance and is the subject of my doctoral research , which examines how Delbo’s representations of clothing uncover all sorts of extraordinary and forgotten stories about women’s experiences of the occupation of France and the Holocaust.

Born on the outskirts of Paris to a working-class family of Italian origins in 1913, Delbo worked as an assistant to the famous theatre manager and actor Louis Jouvet , and for the Jeunesses Communistes (the French Communist Party Youth division). During the early years of the Nazi occupation of France, she supported her husband Georges Dudach in producing clandestine texts and translating radio broadcasts from the UK and Russia.

Woman points on front cover of a book,

She was arrested by a special division of the French Police in March 1942 and her husband was executed by the Wehrmacht in Paris in May of that year. She was held in two prisons in Paris before being deported to Auschwitz-Birkenau in January 1943, and then transferred to Rajsko in August of that year, before finally being moved to Ravensbrück concentration camp in northern Germany in January 1944.

Delbo was evacuated by the Swedish Red Cross in April 1945 and was repatriated to Paris where she spent the next 40 years writing about her experiences and other periods of oppression, as well as working as a translator for the UN and for sociologist Henri Lefebvre . She died in March 1985.

trips to poland and auschwitz

This article is part of Conversation Insights The Insights team generates long-form journalism derived from interdisciplinary research. The team is working with academics from different backgrounds who have been engaged in projects aimed at tackling societal and scientific challenges.

Delbo’s work includes prose, poetry and theatre as well as documentary texts. It is important because her language draws attention to overlooked or hidden stories, including non-Jewish deportees to Auschwitz. It takes in little-known places like Rajsko, women members of the French Resistance, and the legacy of war on children.

She is one of the most brilliant and challenging authors to have survived Auschwitz, yet much of her writing remains relatively unknown.

Her most famous work is Auschwitz and After , which offers glimpses of her time in Rajsko. In another, Convoy to Auschwitz , Delbo writes biographies of each woman in the convoy. It is a compilation of memory, research and correspondence conducted by a team of survivors. The stories told highlight the heterogeneity of the women in the convoy, the destruction caused to the lives of the women themselves and their families and the complicity of the French police with the Nazis. In one passage in Convoy to Auschwitz, translated by Carol Cosman, Delbo writes:

Of the two hundred and thirty who sang in the train cars as we left Compiègne on Janurary 24, 1943, forty-nine returned, after a deportation lasting twenty-seven months. For all of us, this is still a miracle we cannot fathom.

Nazi lies in the Auschwitz archive

The morning after my visit to Rajsko, I was sitting in one of the brick barracks overlooking the infamous Arbeit Macht Frei gateway at Auschwitz I. This is the location of the Auschwitz Museum archives, and archivist Szymon Kowalski gave me an introduction to the history of the collection.

The entrance to Auschwitz

From the UK, I had pre-ordered documents pertaining to Delbo and other members of her convoy from Wojciech Płosa , head of the archives. I had no idea how many days’ work it would be to trawl through this material and connect it with Delbo’s texts. I hoped that I would have enough time during my four-day visit.

I was staggered to learn from Kowalski that a scant 5% of the records from the Auschwitz system survives, of which only 20–30% pertains to women. Previous research has also highlighted the issue of black holes in the archives .

The loss of 95% of the record is due to two different political systems trying to control information about the past. To start with, the SS destroyed tons of documentation as the Soviet Red Army approached in January 1945. And then, the Soviets confiscated records after liberating the camp and took them back to Moscow . Some were released in the 1990s during perestroika but the rest remain in Russia.

What chance, then, did I have of finding Delbo and the women who feature in her literature if such a tiny percentage of the records contained references to women?

Fortunately for me, Płosa had already begun narrowing my search. A large stack of ledgers weighed down the desk in front of me, each with bookmarks at relevant pages.

The archives contained two references to Delbo and both mentions attest to her presence in Rajsko. The first reference placed Delbo in Rajsko’s infirmary between 4-8 July, 1943, suffering from “magen gryppe” (stomach flu). I could not read the second entry, however. It seemed to be a reference to biological tests conducted on her at the SS Hygiene Institut but the volume was in the conservation department and not available to view.

Yet, I saw from Dr Płosa’s list that this unavailable volume also contained records of 11 other women in Delbo’s convoy, some of whom were members of the work group sent to Rajsko.

After a bit more digging I started to infer conclusions from these 12 records in the SS Hygiene Institut log book. The proximity of page numbers containing references to these women suggested that routine tests were conducted on them while they were in quarantine in Auschwitz-Birkenau prior to their transfer to Rajsko. The SS wanted only healthy women to work with the precious dandelion plants in Rajsko’s greenhouses and laboratories (for the sake of the plants’ health, not the workers’).

A dandelion.

Later, at my hotel, I crosschecked the names of the women listed in the SS Hygiene Institut ledger with Delbo’s assertion that all of the women from Convoy 31000 who were transferred from Auschwitz-Birkenau to Rajsko survived the war. Most of the prisoners who were forced to stay in Birkenau died there within a few weeks of arrival in January 1943. In fact, by August that year there were only 57 of the original 230 still alive. Only 17 were transferred to Rajsko. Of those, five seem to have died before they finished their time in quarantine. The remaining 12, including Delbo, survived in Rajsko.

Delbo attributed her group’s survival to the transfer to Rajsko and the preceding period of quarantine. This subcamp in which forced labourers were executed seemed, paradoxically, also to save lives.

Finding Raymonde Salez

The following day I examined the logbook of prisoner death certificates and saw that one member of Delbo’s convoy, Raymonde Salez, was recorded as having died on 4 March 1943 at 10.20am of “grippe bei körperschwäche” (flu and general body weakness), the certificate signed by a “Dr Kitt”. Kowalski had previously explained to me that dates, times and causes of death were fabricated on death certificates and no mention made of Auschwitz in order to obscure the purpose of the camp from the general public.

Not permitted to take photographs, I diligently noted all details from Raymonde Salez’s death certificate in case they became useful. Although the name was unfamiliar to me, I knew that Delbo had recorded the names and nicknames of all the women from her convoy in Convoy to Auschwitz , as well as some of her other works, and I wanted to see if the name Salez was mentioned anywhere. So back at my hotel again later that evening, I began my hunt for Raymonde Salez.

Blackk and portrait photo of Delbo

I gasped when I realised that Salez was a woman I have come to know from Delbo’s play Les Hommes , and her survivor monologues Mesure de nos jours (Measure of our Days). Delbo refers to Salez throughout these texts by her nom-de-guerre, “Mounette”, but her biography of this woman in Convoy to Auschwitz states that her real name is Raymonde Salez .

Delbo’s play Les Hommes is set in another lesser known Holocaust site, the Fort de Romainville Gestapo holding camp on the outskirts of Paris. This is where the women of Convoy 31000 were held immediately prior to their deportation to Auschwitz-Birkenau. In this play, Mounette appears as a rosy, blonde, pretty young woman, who wears borrowed luxurious and lacy raspberry-silk lingerie to star in a theatre show which the prisoners stage in the holding camp. She is described as “really cute” and her fiancé thinks of her “with ringlets and little bows in her lovely hair”.

Young, pretty and vibrant, Mounette was a committed member of the French Resistance, and was arrested in June 1942. She was deported to Auschwitz with the rest of Convoy 31000 on January 24 1943. Just six weeks later, here she is in the archive. Dead.

I wept when I realised who this person really was. I had known the character of Mounette so well, but the discovery in the archive brought her to life: she was a real person.

But when I compared Salez’s death certificate with Delbo’s text there was a discrepancy: Delbo records Mounette’s death as having occurred on 9 March due to dysentery whereas the Nazis recorded Salez’s death as happening on 4 March, due to flu and exhaustion. Delbo wrote about how inmates remembered key dates and details in Auschwitz in order to bear witness later. This discrepancy, it seemed, was evidence of Nazi lies (remember, concealing their crimes and removing evidence was standard operating procedure).

At the same time, while the Salez death certificate seemed to contain falsified information, it is significant as it is the only documented trace in Auschwitz-Birkenau of her presence there because there is no prisoner photograph of her.

So, there are still unanswered questions lost in the archive and these gaps call attention to how Salez and so many other people lost their lives and disappeared without a trace. Nevertheless, my historical trace is valuable, given that such a small percentage of records of women in Auschwitz remain.

Reference to Mounette and Salez lie in the ruins of the archive and demonstrate how the Auschwitz Museum is invaluable in both safeguarding history and highlighting the Nazis’ corruption of it.

Examining references to Mounette in Delbo’s literature was instrumental in bringing this ambiguity to light. Delbo’s literature also recuperates snapshots of Mounette, who otherwise has vanished without trace; it records fragments not only of her incarceration and death but also of her life before she was consumed by the Holocaust. As Delbo writes:

Dear little Mounette, how perceptive she is, how gifted she is, so curious about everything, avid to learn everything.

The Death Block

On the third day of my trip, I visited the extermination centre and forced labour camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau. I was overwhelmed by the magnitude of the site, the seemingly neverending rows of barracks. I was stunned by the incomprehensibility of the huge number of Auschwitz-Birkenau’s victims, the totality of their anonymity, the enormous absence that fills the place.

My visit focused, not on the gas chambers where incoming Jews were murdered, but on the barracks where the women in Delbo’s convoy were billeted: blocks 14 and 26 in zone BIa .

At block 26 I was brought face-to-face with horror: the adjacent block 25 was the Death Block. Here, women were left to starve to death. Delbo’s neighbouring block 26 had a line of windows looking into the Death Block’s unique enclosed courtyard, which means that she and her barrack-mates witnessed those being left for dead, crying out for rescue, being stacked both dead and alive into trucks to be carted off to the crematoria.

Auschwitz barracks

The Death Block features in many stark chapters in Delbo’s work None of Us Will Return, the first volume of Auschwitz and After, most shockingly in “The Dummies” and most affectingly perhaps in “Alice’s Leg”. Here she details the death of her comrade, Parisian opera-singer Alice Viterbo, who wore a prosthetic leg.

During a “selection” in early February 1943, just days after the women’s arrival and in which they were forced to run, Alice was one of a number of women who fell and she was abandoned by her comrades. She was hauled off to the Death Block. Through the barred window Alice begged for poison. Alice died on either February 25 or 26, Delbo cannot be sure which, but she did know that Alice “lasted longer than anyone else”. Her prosthetic leg lay in the snow behind the block for many days afterwards.

Alice Viterbo, an Italian born in Egypt in 1895, was a singer at the Paris Opera until she lost a leg in a car accident whereupon she left the stage and opened a speech and voice school. Delbo reports that the reason for Viterbo’s arrest was unknown but that she may have been involved with a resistance network. Viterbo made a “superhuman” effort to run during the Auschwitz-Birkenau selection, having already been standing at roll call since 3am.

How many others are waiting to be found?

Just four days led me to the discovery of Salez, Rajsko and Nazi lies. Who knows how many other women are lost, their stories waiting to be found?

My trip to the ruins of the Auschwitz camp complex emphasised even more for me the value of Delbo’s literature. It provides testimony of people, places and experiences that have become lost to history. It also points to historical gaps and lies. And it reminds us of those, like Salez, who vanished without trace, their death marked with no grave. In representing these forgotten people, Delbo’s literature marks their existence. The few fragments that remain of their lives are precious and they highlight even more the enormity of the loss of those people.

Visiting the places Delbo writes about in her startling and spare literature brought home to me the horror of what she and the other women in her convoy experienced, the disconnect between what they lived through and what remains on the ground, and the challenge of how to represent it in words; to try to bridge the gap of incomprehension of all of us who were not there.

It was a gap Delbo herself felt, as she wrote in Auschwitz and After:

This dot on the map This black spot at the core of Europe this red spot this spot of fire this spot of soot this spot of blood this spot of ashes for millions a nameless place. From all the countries of Europe from all the points on the horizon trains converged toward the nameless place loaded with millions of humans poured out there unknowing of where poured out with their lives memories small aches huge astonishment eyes questioning bamboozled under fire burned without knowing where they were. Today people know have known for several years that this dot on the map is Auschwitz This much they know as for the rest they think they know.

trips to poland and auschwitz

For you: more from our Insights series :

India elections: ‘Our rule of law is under attack from our own government, but the world does not see this’

History’s crisis detectives: how we’re using maths and data to reveal why societies collapse – and clues about the future

How a little-known clergyman studying worms by candlelight in the 1700s inspired Charles Darwin – but didn’t get the credit he deserved

To hear about new Insights articles, join the hundreds of thousands of people who value The Conversation’s evidence-based news. Subscribe to our newsletter .

  • Concentration camps
  • Nazi propaganda
  • Insights series
  • Auschwitz-Birkenau

Want to write?

Write an article and join a growing community of more than 185,400 academics and researchers from 4,982 institutions.

Register now

trips to poland and auschwitz

CANDLES Museum marks 80th anniversary of liberation of Auschwitz with trip to Poland

T ERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — CANDLES Holocaust Museum & Education Center has announced that registration has opened for their trip to Poland for the 80 year anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.

CANDLES invites people to join them Jan. 25 – Feb. 2 to commemorate 80 years since Eva Kor and her sister Miriam Zieger were liberated from the infamous concentration camp. During the trip you’ll be able to walk in the footsteps of Eva Kor, a Romanian born holocaust survivor who opened the museum. You’ll not only have the chance to learn about her extraordinary story but also explore the stunning city of Krakow, Poland with professional guides who provide a humbling experience as you explore locations central to Eva’s story.

CANDLES asks interested parties to complete all the registration materials along with a $650 nonrefundable deposit to CANDLES by Oct. 19 to secure your spot until capacity is reached.

For more information, or to register for the trip visit CANDLES website here .

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to

CANDLES Museum marks 80th anniversary of liberation of Auschwitz with trip to Poland

or Register

Hadassah: un commission of inquiry report biased, distorted, gantz: israel should withdraw from gaza for hostage deal, katz calls belarus president’s remarks ‘clear’ antisemitism, france, germany, uk condemn iran’s nuclear escalation, idf announces daily 11-hour ‘humanitarian pauses’ in southern gaza, us investigating usc, uc davis over potential title vi violations, queens man arrested near laguardia with ‘arsenal of weapons’, ‘we’re taking you home’: israeli forces rescue noa argamani from gaza, words as bombs, trying to understand, lena dunham and stephen fry take a father-daughter trip to auschwitz in tragicomedy ‘treasure’.

  • Toby Axelrod
  • Jun 14, 2024
  • Posted Jun 14, 2024 at 6: 34 PM Updated 29 mins ago at 5: 00 AM

BERLIN — On the day they filmed at Auschwitz, Lena Dunham and Stephen Fry weren’t allowed to say anything to each other except their scripted lines.

Fry had come down with Covid, and Julia Von Heinz, their director in “Treasure,” had only barely eked out permission from the memorial to film outside the Nazi concentration camp’s gates. Changing the dates, she was told, was impossible.

So the show went on, but with strict rules about conversation aimed at preventing Fry from infecting Dunham and further derailing production.

It was, Dunham said, excruciatingly difficult. The co-stars usually talked “from the minute we got in the hair and makeup chair in the morning until the minute that we got to our cars at night,” she recalled during an appearance at the Berlin film festival where “Treasure” premiered in February.

“I kept having to remind myself, because I wanted to connect with him on what we were seeing,” she added. “But Julia so wisely understood that his character was isolated in that feeling. And my character didn’t understand that feeling.”

The illness-induced separation between the on-screen odd couple — Dunham, the American actor, writer and producer known for giving voice to the angst of millennials, and Fry, a charming yet staid Brit nearly twice her age — mimicked the emotional gap between their characters, a father and daughter who take a roots trip to Poland in 1990, just after the fall of the Iron Curtain.

Based on the 2000 novel “Too Many Men” by Australian writer Lilly Brett, the film tells the story of New York journalist Ruth Rothwax (Dunham) and her Holocaust survivor father, Edek (Fry) as they visit the city of his birth — Łódź — and the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, which he survived. Their trip, which follows the death of Edek’s wife and Ruth’s mother, is both a passage into a world of memories and a test of each other’s boundaries.

The story of “Treasure” will be familiar to many Ashkenazi Jews who have either made such journeys, delved into genealogical research, or seen the 2005 movie “Everything is Illuminated” – based on Jonathan Safran Foer’s surreal, eponymous 2002 road-trip novel about the search for Jewish roots in Ukraine.

But unlike that story, which also unwinds along bumpy, post-Soviet roads, “Treasure” does not dip into magical realism, despite pulling some major tricks — including getting a British actor to speak a Polish-accented American English (“It was a challenge, but it was an enchanting one,” Fry said), using decrepit locations in contemporary Germany to convey the grim architecture of 1990s Poland, and employing special effects to film some Auschwitz scenes (because filming inside the camp boundaries is not allowed).

Rather, von Heinz conveys realistic father-daughter tensions, painting a believable portrait of the survivor who has learned to go with the flow, and the neurotic “second-generation” daughter who eats as if she were just liberated herself, who is obsessed with antisemitism, and sees the past in the present everywhere she tosses and turns.

And von Heinz does it with humor – something she hardly dared try at first.

Normally, “Germans wouldn’t dare to mix humor into that. We just wouldn’t dare it. Rightly so,” said von Heinz, who has one Jewish grandfather . Speaking at a press conference after the Berlin premiere, she said she fell in love with Brett’s novel and when casting the movie “just felt I needed two actors who made me laugh.”

The post Lena Dunham and Stephen Fry take a father-daughter trip to Auschwitz in tragicomedy ‘Treasure’ appeared first on Jewish Telegraphic Agency .

How do you feel about this article?

Choose from the options below.

  • Everything Is Illuminated (film)
  • Auschwitz Concentration Camp

CJN Most Popular

Residents concerned about antisemitism at beachwood high school, rabbis opposed to cuyahoga county council resolution issue statement, shop shalom gift shop opens at mandel jcc, beachwood students’ genocide video has district scrambling, hockey reporter, broadcaster remembered for his opinions, sign up for e-news.

Choose from the CJN's informative e-newsletters.

  • Photo Galleries

Janna Zborovsky | Style Vault CLE

Ratner receives inaugural lifetime legacy award at park gala, cjpc wins ajpa rockower award for first podcast; adelstein, jacob reelected to board, why they do what they do: joanie and tom adler.

trips to poland and auschwitz

Guided Tours for Individual Visitors

Individual visitors may tour the Memorial independently or in organised groups with a guide-educator.

Entrance to the Museum, to both Auschwitz I and Birkenau parts, is possible only with a personalized entry pass booked in advance. Reservations can be made at  or on the spot at the cashier. The number of entry passes available is limited.

Due to the limited number of the entry passes visitors are kindly requested to book in advance at the website ,  as well as to arrive 30 minutes before the start of the tour. Larger luggage should be left in vehicles in the car park. Before the visit, please read the  rules of visiting  and  the opening hours of the  Museum.


Tour without a guide-educator is possible at certain times subject to free Entry Passes, which may be downloaded from  the tour booking system :

  • January, November: form 1.00 PM
  • February: from 2.00 PM
  • March, October: from 3.00 PM
  • April, May, September: from 4.00 PM
  • June - August: from 4:00 PM
  • December: from 12.00 PM  

During the dates provided below, entrance to Museum is only possible with a guide-educator:

  • January, November: from 7.30 AM to 1.00 PM 
  • February: from 7.30 AM to 2.00 PM
  • March, October: from 7.30 AM to 3.00 PM
  • April, May, September: from 7.30 AM to 4.00 PM
  • June - August: from 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM
  • December: from 7.30 AM to 12.00 PM


• Polish from 8.30, 9.00 to 13.00 in every hour • English from 8.30 to 12.30 in every  hour • French 11.45 • German 10.15 • Italian 11.15 • Spanish 10.45 • Russian 9.45

• Polish from  8.15, 9.00 to 13.00 in every hour • English from 8.30 to 13.30 in every  hour • French 11.15 • German 10.45 • Italian 11.45 • Spanish 12.15 • Russian 10.15

• Polish from  8.15, 9.00 to 14.00 in every hour • English from 8.30 to 14.30 in every  hour • French 10.15, 13.45 • German 9.45, 14.15 • Italian 11.15, 13.15 • Spanish 10.45, 14.45 • Russian 11.45


• Polish from  8.15 to 15.15 in 30 min. • English from 8.30 to 15.30 in 30 min. • French 10.15, 12.45, 13.15 • German 9.45, 12.00, 14.45 • Italian 11.15, 12.45, 14.15 • Spanish 10.45, 12.15, 13.45 • Russian 9.15, 11.45, 15.15


• Polish 8.15, 8.45, 9.15, 9.45 and from 10.15 to 15.45 in every 15 min., 16.15, 16.45  • English 08.30, 9.00 and from 9.30 to 15.30 in every 15 min., 16.00, 16.30 • Czech 10.45, 14.15 • Slovak 9.45, 13:45 • Russian 9.15, 11.45, 15.15 • French 10.15, 12.45, 14:15 • German 9.45, 12.00, 14.45 • Spanish 10.45, 12.15, 14.45 • Italian 11.15, 12.45, 14.15

• Polish from 8.15 to 15.15 in every 30 min. • English from 8.30 to 15.30 in every 30 min. • Russian 9.15, 11.45, 15.15 • French 10:15, 12:45, 13:15 • German 9.45, 12.00, 14.45 • Spanish 10.45, 12.15, 13.45 • Italian 11.15, 12.45, 14.15

• Polish 8.15 and from 9.00 to 14.00 in every hour • English form 8.30 to 14.30 in every hour • Russian 11.45 • French 10.15, 13.45 • German 9.45, 14,15 • Spanish 10.45, 14.45 • Italian 11.15, 13.15

• Polish 8.15 and from 9.00 to 14.00 in every hour • English from 8.30 to 12.30 in every  hour • French 11.45 • German 10.45 • Italian 11.15 • Spanish 12.15 • Russian 10.15

• Polish 8.15 and from 9.00 to 12.00 in every hour • English from 8.30 to 11.30 in every hour • French 11.45 • German 10.15 • Italian 11.15 • Spanish 10.45 • Russian 9.45

You can book a place on a tour at , where you will find information on available dates and  prices of entry passes .

A tour lasts approximately 3.5 hours and it starts at Auschwitz I. 

The price includes a tour of the former Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau camps with a guide-educator, rental of a headset. The Museum provides transfer between both sites of the former camp. The shuttle bus is intended for individual visitors in guided tours. The transfer takes place in accordance with security procedures in force in the territory of the Republic of Poland regarding public transport means.

Sale of entry passes for language tours ends 5 minutes before the start of the tour.

Concessionary entry passes are available to pupils and students aged up to 26 years, people over 75 years of age and disabled upon presentation of a proper document.

During periods of increased visitor traffic, there may be a temporary limitation in the availability of group tours.


Study tours are organized everyday (tour takes around 6 hours):

• Polish 9.00

• German 9.15

• English 9.30

  • via @auschwitzmuseum" aria-label="Udostępnij na Twitter">

Images from may be used only in publications relating to the history of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau or the activities of the Auschwitz Memorial. Their use must not tarnish the good reputation of the victims of KL Auschwitz. Any interference in the integrity of the images – including cropping or graphic processing – is prohibited. The use of the images for commercial purposes requires the Museum’s approval and information about the publication. Publishers undertake to indicate the authors and origin of the images:, as well as to inform the Museum of the use of the images ([email protected]).

  • Share full article


Supported by

Sigmund Rolat, Who Used His Wealth to Memorialize Polish Jews, Dies at 93

A Holocaust survivor and a shipping financier, he returned to his home country, where his parents and brother perished, to help build a museum and other memorials.

A portrait of Sigmund Rolat sitting before a wall sculpture resembling a tangle of walking canes. He ears a blue suit, light blue shirt and red patterned tie, and his hands are folded on his lap.

By Richard Sandomir

Sigmund Rolat, a Polish Holocaust survivor who tapped the wealth he accumulated as a businessman in the United States to support cultural projects in his homeland, most notably a museum devoted to the history of Jews in Poland that stands on the grounds of the Warsaw Ghetto, died on May 19 at his home in Alpine, N.J. He was 93.

His son, Geoffrey, confirmed the death.

Mr. Rolat believed that except for the dark chapter of World War II, with Nazi atrocities at concentration camps like Auschwitz and Treblinka in occupied Poland, the history of Polish Jewry was a mystery to most Jews, and most Americans. He donated millions of dollars to help build the interior and other elements of the Polin Museum of the History of Polish Jews , which opened in 2014, and he became a major fund-raiser and an influential voice on its board.

“I want the gate of our museum, and not the ‘Arbeit macht frei’ gate, to be the first gate that will be seen by Jews visiting Poland,” Mr. Rolat told Forbes magazine in 2014 , referring to the cynical inscription (“Work sets you free”) that greeted inmates when they entered the main Auschwitz concentration camp.

“The Jews should first learn our shared history,” he added. “And then, of course, they should see Auschwitz, but with a better understanding of what happened there.”

The main exhibition at the museum tells the story of Poland’s Jews over 1,000 years, from the Middle Ages to the present, using artifacts, paintings, replicas and interactive installations.

“It is not another museum of the Holocaust,” Mr. Rolat told McClatchy Newspapers in 2013. “It is a museum of life.”

Ewa Junczyk-Ziomecka was the director of development for the museum when she first met Mr. Rolat at his office in Warsaw in 2004. When he learned that she wasn’t Jewish, he asked her why she was involved with a museum about Polish Jews.

“I told him, ‘There is no complete history of Poland without the history of Polish Jews,” she recalled in a phone interview. “‘Because I’m Polish, I’m involved.’ He was surprised and said, ‘Oh, God, if you’re involved in this, how about me, a Polish Jew, standing by you?’”

Mr. Rolat used his money to support arts events in Poland, like the Jewish Culture Festival in Krakow and Singer’s Warsaw Festival, named for Isaac Bashevis Singer, the Polish-born writer and recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature.

He also focused on Czestochowa, his hometown in southern Poland, where Jews were one-third of the population before World War II. He paid for a memorial statue at the local railroad station — where the Nazis selected about 40,000 Jews for deportation to Treblinka — and a plaque at the slave labor camp where he and his mother were imprisoned. And he helped support the restoration of parts of the Jewish cemetery in Czestochowa where his mother and older brother were executed.

One of his most poignant efforts was producing a concert in 2009 at an orchestra hall in Czestochowa on the site of a synagogue where he had worshiped, and which the Nazis destroyed.

At that concert, the violinist Joshua Bell performed with the same Stradivarius that for decades had been owned by Bronislaw Huberman, a virtuoso from Czestochowa who later founded the Palestine Symphony Orchestra (now the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra). The Stradivarius, which was made in 1713, was stolen from Mr. Huberman in 1936 and did not resurface until 1987.

Mr. Bell played Brahms’s Violin Concerto in D major, which Mr. Huberman had played as a teenager for an audience that included Brahms himself.

“The Germans burned this synagogue down in 1939,” Mr. Rolat said before the concert, which was documented in Haim Hecht’s film “The Return of the Violin (2012) . “But this place, so full of glory, will always remain ours.”

He called the concert “one of the grand moments of my life.”

Zygmunt Rozenblat was born on July 1, 1930. His father, Henryk, was an accountant. His mother, Zyska Mariana (Szydlowska) Rozenblat, managed the household.

After Germany imposed punitive antisemitic laws, Zygmunt’s childhood education ended in the fourth grade. Two years later, he, his parents and his older brother, Jerzyk, were forced into a ghetto in Czestochowa.

His parents and brother perished in 1943. His father, deported to Treblinka, died in an inmate uprising that ended the camp’s operations. His brother, a Resistance fighter, was executed with five other partisans in the same cemetery where his mother was killed. Zygmunt was freed from the Hasag Pelcery slave labor camp when the Soviet Red Army liberated it in January 1945.

Zygmunt stayed in Poland for a short time before moving to Munich, where an aunt arranged for him to be tutored for six hours a day by a German professor, which enabled him to pass his secondary school equivalency test.

In 1948, he emigrated to New York City with a group of other orphaned refugees. With the help of a Jewish service organization, he received a scholarship to the University of Cincinnati and graduated in 1952 with a bachelor’s degree in political science. Around that time, he changed his name to Sigmund Rolat.

After working in a shipping company, Mr. Rolat started his own, Skyline Shipping, in Manhattan, in 1959. Three years later, he started an export finance company, Oxford International.

“I went to Poland with him in the 1980s,” his daughter Samantha Asulin said in a phone interview, “and he realized he still felt a connection to his birthplace — and he saw business opportunities.”

One opportunity arose after Mr. Rolat saw a picture of teenagers in jeans sitting on the ruins of the Berlin Wall after it fell in 1989. He started a business in the early 1990s that exported denim to Poland.

Mr. Rolat’s honors include the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland, which he received in 2008 from President Lech Kaczynski, and the Commander’s Cross With Star of the Order of Poland, from a subsequent Polish president, Bronislaw Komorowski, in 2013.

Mr. Rolat married Jacqueline Cantor in 1952; that marriage ended in divorce. His marriage to Ingrid Busse in 1966 ended with her death in 1967, and his marriage six years later to Jacqueline Spencer ended with her death as well, in 2013.

In addition to his son, from his first marriage, and his daughter Ms. Asulin, from his third, Mr. Rolat is survived by another daughter, Amanda Rolat, also from his third marriage, and four grandchildren. Another daughter, Jane Rolat, from his first marriage, died in 2003.

The memorial that Mr. Rolat commissioned at the Czestochowa railroad station was unveiled in 2009. Created by Samuel Willenberg , a Holocaust survivor, it consists of a brick wall , split jaggedly in half, with two rails on one side and a Star of David, also made of rails, on the other. (In 2021, it was vandalized with swastikas and other Nazi symbols.)

“All the Jewishness was broken,” Mr. Willenberg, who was born in Czestochowa, said at the unveiling, referring to the broken wall. He added, as quoted in the Jewish newspaper The Forward , “The rails are in the image of those sent to Treblinka, crammed into cattle cars, while the Magen David stands for the Jewish people who continue to live.”

When it was his turn to speak, Mr. Rolat said, “The importance of this monument can be summed up in one word: Memory.”

Richard Sandomir is an obituaries writer. He previously wrote about sports media and sports business. He is also the author of several books, including “The Pride of the Yankees: Lou Gehrig, Gary Cooper and the Making of a Classic.” More about Richard Sandomir

In ‘Treasure,’ Lena Dunham plays a Holocaust survivor’s daughter who road trips across Poland looking for answers

Stephen fry costars as her polish father, who accompanies her on the conflict-filled journey..

Lena Dunham and Stephen Fry in "Treasure."

“Treasure” tells the story of Ruth (Lena Dunham), a music journalist who takes a trip through Poland to learn more about her family’s history before and after her relatives were taken to concentration camps. She is joined by her Holocaust survivor father, Edek (Stephen Fry), with whom she has a tenuous, often antagonistic relationship.

If the plot of this mismatched-buddy road trip story sounds familiar, you may have heard of “ A Real Pain ,” the Jesse Eisenberg-directed Sundance festival darling from earlier this year. Both films are based on true events; in the case of “Treasure,” the source material is the semi-autobiographical 1999 novel “Too Many Men” by Lily Brett. I haven’t seen Eisenberg’s film, but I sure hope it’s better than this one.

Julia von Heinz’s direction can’t handle the film’s tonal shifts, and the screenplay (co-written by von Heinz and John Quester) centers on two very poorly written leads who clash in ways that are supposed to be comedic but are mostly infuriating.


It’s 1991, and the collapse of the Berlin Wall has allowed Holocaust survivors and their descendants to return to Poland. “Treasure” shows that many of the Polish residents who moved into the Jewish areas after the Nazi invasion took whatever personal items were left; now they’re afraid that descendants of these families, or the survivors themselves, will return to claim what is rightfully theirs.

Stephen Fry and Lena Dunham in "Treasure."

Many in Edek’s generation had no desire to return — he tells Ruth that her late mother would not have accompanied them on their journey. But relatives and other curious people started engaging in what became known as “Holocaust tours,” where people could visit death camps such as Auschwitz.

Ruth has brochures for these tours, but she rejects the idea. Her ultimate goal, however, is unclear. What does she hope to find? Throughout the film, she carries around history books and generally acts like a spoiled brat, repeatedly chewing out her father and being miserable. It gets real tiresome, real fast.

Though Ruth doesn’t speak Polish, she doesn’t want Edek to join her. He accompanies her anyway, though I’m still not sure why. The first hour of the film alternates between his inexplicable attempts at sabotaging her plans and chastising her for making impromptu choices he considers dangerous.

The screenwriters can’t make up their minds about Edek’s motivations, either. He throws money around with reckless abandon, greasing the palms of hotel workers to get better treatment. Yet, he’s furious when Ruth pays an exorbitant amount to buy back his mother’s tea set from the corrupt yet terrified Polish family who currently inhabit Edek’s old apartment.

“Treasure” also fails to define the relationship between father and daughter in anything but the most superficial terms. He’s unhappy with Ruth being divorced from a guy he thought was perfect for her (so perfect that Edek keeps his ex-son-in-law’s photo in his wallet). He also berates her about her eating disorder. She’s upset that he’s emotionally closed off and that he’s willing to move on after being widowed.

It’s completely understandable that Ruth would feel the pain of not knowing her past. But whenever “Treasure” makes an astute observation about the intergenerational trauma between Holocaust survivors and their children, it’s quickly overshadowed by the type of bickering you’ve seen in countless other movies. What’s worse is that Edek is constantly forced to apologize to a selfish daughter who can’t fathom why her father wouldn’t want to relive his time in Auschwitz just to satisfy her curiosity.

From left: Stephen Fry, Lena Dunham, and Zbigniew Zamachowski in "Treasure."

Both leads are horribly miscast. Dunham drags out the same tired, unlikable character she’s been playing her entire career. This film often feels like an episode of “Girls” where Hannah Horvath goes to Lodz.

Fry fares far worse, with an overdone accent borrowed from Sir Laurence Olivier’s box of bad Eastern European voices. If “Treasure” plays in the theaters I visited on my numerous trips to Poland, he’ll probably be laughed off the screen. The scene where he returns to Auschwitz also lacks the emotional punch it needs.

Thankfully, there are a few bright spots in this otherwise forgettable endeavor. Zbigniew Zamachowski, the star of Krzysztof Kieślowski’s “Trois Couleurs: Blanc,” is very good in a quiet role as Stefan, the cabbie Edek hires to drive him and Ruth around. Iwona Bielska is fun as Zofia, a flirtatious older woman who’s sweet on Edek. And the production design team does a fantastic job re-creating the Soviet-bloc-style apartment interiors and cars of 1991 Poland.

Directed by Julia von Heinz. Written by von Heinz and John Quester, based on the novel “Too Many Men” by Lily Brett. Starring Lena Dunham, Stephen Fry, Zbigniew Zamachowski, Iwona Bielska. At AMC Boston Common, AMC Causeway, suburbs. 112 min. R (profanities in Polish and English)

Odie Henderson is the Boston Globe's film critic.


  1. Visiting / Auschwitz-Birkenau

    Each includes tours of Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau. • General tours (2,5 h) • General tours (3,5 h) • Guided tours for individual visitors (3,5 h) • One-day study tours (6 h) • Two-day study tours (2x3 h) • Online tour (2 h) Because of a large number of visitors guides should be reserved at least two months before a ...

  2. 10 Best Tours & Trips including Auschwitz (with Reviews)

    Krakow, Auschwitz & Wieliczka Salt Mine - 4 Days. 5.0 (27 traveller reviews) "We loved every minute of our walking tours and he chose great drivers to take us to the tours he did not lead." Fagel, traveled in June 2023. Destinations. Krakow, Auschwitz, +1 more. Age Range. 12 to 90 year olds. Country Region.

  3. Auschwitz-Birkenau Guided Tour

    The general tour lasts for three and a half hours as you explore the permanent exhibitions and main camp buildings along with the prisoner barracks, ruined gas chambers and crematoria at Auschwitz II-Birkenau. To travel between the two camps, there's a free shuttle bus. At the main Auschwitz site, you'll browse artefacts including ...

  4. Visiting Auschwitz

    Here are some of the recommended Auschwitz tours from Warsaw: From Warsaw Auschwitz and Krakow one day tour by train with pick up and drop off; One day tour to Auschwitz-Birkenau from Warsaw with private transport; Going for the day trip from Warsaw to Auschwitz independently is also possible using trains. You can take the 6 am train to ...

  5. From Krakow: Auschwitz-Birkenau Guided Tour & Pickup Options

    Enter the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum for a 3.5-hour guided tour of the former Nazi concentration camps. Hear how 1.3 million Jews, along with prisoners from Poland, France and Italy were murdered there during World War II. See the infamous "Arbeit Macht Frei" gate and learn the origins of the camp and what life was like for the ...

  6. Krakow: Auschwitz Guided Tour with Optional Lunch and Pickup

    Krakow: Auschwitz Guided Tour with Optional Lunch and Pickup. 4.5 / 5 14882 reviews. Activity provider: Unlimited Krakow. Add to wishlist. +6. Visit one of the most significant places in Poland on a 7-hour tour of the Auschwitz Museum and Birkenau Camp in Oświęcim. Explore a symbol of the Holocaust and memorial to the victims of the Nazis.

  7. Tours options / Visiting / Auschwitz-Birkenau

    We offer visitors several options for guided tours. Each includes tours of Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau. • General tours (3,5 h) • Guided tours for individual visitors (3,5 h) • One or two-day study tours (6 h or 3+3 h) • General tours - shorter version before closing hours (2,5 h) • Online tour (2 h) Because of a large ...

  8. Plan your visit / Visiting / Auschwitz-Birkenau

    Plan your visit. Fence and barbed... In order to take in the grounds and exhibitions in a suitable way, visitors should set aside a minimum of about 90 minutes for the Auschwitz site and the same amount of time for Auschwitz II-Birkenau. It is essential to visit both parts of the camp, Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in order to acquire ...

  9. From Krakow: Auschwitz-Birkenau Guided Tour & Pickup Options

    Visit Auschwitz on a day trip from Krakow. Learn about the history of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camps during a guided tour with a certified historian and guide. Auschwitz-Birkenau was founded in 1940 by Nazi Germany and was the largest concentration camp operated by the Nazis.

  10. Mazurkas Travel

    Auschwitz considered as the biggest Nazi's concentration camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau was established on 14th June 1940 and liberated in January 1945. About 1.5 million people of 28 nationalities lost their lives here, mostly Jews. ... All of our guides and drivers provided by Mazurkas Travel in Poland were excellent, going the extra mile to ...

  11. Package trips to Auschwitz from Krakow

    Description. Save your money and time with the Auschwitz Package designed for those who want to see one of the most visited places in Poland with a comfortable two-way transportation, airport transfers, and a recommended minimum 2-night stay in a verified top-rated hotel at one low price. You will be safely transported from and to the airport ...

  12. Auschwitz-Birkenau Guided Tour with Ticket & Transfer from Krakow

    1 Day Trip Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum Guided Tour from Krakow. 105. Historical Tours. from . £26.60. per adult. ... 'Polish Paddy' was a great driver, kept us updated all along, would thoroughly recommend using Hello Cracow, thank you. Read more. Written 8 June 2024. davidcA6627KY.

  13. Auschwitz Birkenau Guided Tour from Krakow and Transfer options

    Explore the biggest Nazi extermination camp on your own. Spend at least one and a half hour seeing the remnants of living barracks for prisoners and the notorious gas chambers. From the Birkenau Memorial make your way to the Auschwitz Museum. Panstwowe Muzeum Auschwitz-Birkenau

  14. 2024 Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial Guided Tour from Krakow

    About. Honour the victims of the World War II Holocaust at Auschwitz-Birkenau and trace the story of Krakow's Nazi occupation on this one day experience. Take a guided tour of the UNESCO-listed Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and see its moving exhibitions and prison blocks. The Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum serves as a critical educational ...

  15. Visit Auschwitz (Krakow)

    Based on 230 reviews. 52.2 Km to Visit Auschwitz. Bright and modern apartments. 1.8km from Wawel Castle. 1.7km from the Main Market Square. 2.4km from Kazimierz Jewish District. Perfect for couples, friends & families. View on map.

  16. Auschwitz-Birkenau guided tour from Krakow with Ticket & Transfer

    Auschwitz-Birkenau guided tour from Krakow with Ticket & Transfer. Krakow. Hotels. Things to Do. Restaurants Flights Holiday Rentals Travel Stories Cruises Car Hire.

  17. Warsaw: Tour to Krakow and Auschwitz by Train with Pickup

    Embark on a 3.5-hour guided group tour of Auschwitz and Birkenau. Start the tour with a visit to the Auschwitz concentration camp where you'll learn about how its establishment by German Nazis on the outskirts of the town Oswiecim in 1940. After the war, the camp was turned into a museum displaying evidence of the genocide, which you will have ...

  18. Online guided tours for individual visitors

    Entry cards are available at at "online individual visit" section. The online tour lasts about two hours and is divided into two parts - in Auschwitz I and Birkenau. The guide's narration is conducted live. Additionally, the educator will also use multimedia materials, archival photographs, artistic works, documents, and ...

  19. The Emotional Trip To Auschwitz In Poland And What It Taught Me

    The prisoners were living in extremely poor conditions, they were treated like rubbish, they were exhausted. For all that, they created the art. There was the place in a camp, called Lagermuseum, where all the antiques, coins, and works of art, robbed from the prisoners, were held.

  20. Escorted Coach Holidays To Auschwitz

    Browse our range of tours to the histroic Auschwitz today. Your tour is carefully planned out, and rich with history. Book today! Book Online or Call 0333 234 2010 0333 234 2010 Set Pickup: Click My ... Most tours include dinner, bed and breakfast and at least one free excursion; time to explore favourite towns and cities. ...

  21. Nazi lies in the Auschwitz archive

    There, written in Polish and affixed to the wall, obscured by trees, is a plaque. ... My trip to the ruins of the Auschwitz camp complex emphasised even more for me the value of Delbo's ...

  22. CANDLES Museum marks 80th anniversary of liberation of Auschwitz ...

    TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — CANDLES Holocaust Museum & Education Center has announced that registration has opened for their trip to Poland for the 80 year anniversary of the liberation of ...

  23. NYC Museum of Jewish Heritage Opens Auschwitz Virtual Reality Tour

    "The stoic barracks of Auschwitz remain our enduring eyewitnesses." More than 1.1 million European Jews were murdered in the notorious concentration camp as part of the Nazis' "Final ...

  24. Lena Dunham and Stephen Fry take a father-daughter trip to Auschwitz in

    BERLIN — On the day they filmed at Auschwitz, ... a father and daughter who take a roots trip to Poland in 1990, just after the fall of the Iron Curtain. ...

  25. From Warsaw: One-Day Auschwitz Concentration Camp Tour

    Full description. This tour features a visit to Auschwitz, the largest Nazi concentration camp from World War II. See the gas chambers, crematorium and death cells. After pickup at 6:00 AM, you'll be transferred to Warsaw Central Railway Station. Go by train to Krakow Main Railway Station, a journey of approximately 2.5 hours.

  26. Guided Tours for Individual Visitors

    Entrance to the Museum, to both Auschwitz I and Birkenau parts, is possible only with a personalized entry pass booked in advance. ... • Polish from 8.15, 9.00 to 14.00 in every hour • English from 8.30 to 14.30 in every hour • French 10.15, 13.45 ... The shuttle bus is intended for individual visitors in guided tours. The transfer takes ...

  27. Sigmund Rolat, Who Used His Wealth to Memorialize Polish Jews, Dies at

    Sigmund A. Rolat in 2013. In financing memorials to Polish Jews killed in World War II, he focused on his Polish hometown, where his mother and older brother were executed. via Rolat Family. By ...

  28. Lena Dunham and Stephen Fry take a road trip across Poland in "Treasure"

    Bleecker Street. "Treasure" tells the story of Ruth (Lena Dunham), a music journalist who takes a trip through Poland to learn more about her family's history before and after her relatives ...

  29. Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum Guided Tour with Ticket and Transfer

    Southern Poland. Lesser Poland Province. Krakow. ... See all things to do. Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum Guided Tour with Ticket and Transfer. 5. Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum Guided Tour with Ticket and Transfer, Krakow ... Jewish District Hotels near Stare Miasto Hotels near St Mary's Basilica Hotels near Wawel Cathedral Hotels near Krakow Auschwitz ...

  30. The BEST Memorial and Museum Auschwitz-Birkenau Tours 2024

    Benefit from pick-up at your accommodation in Krakow, and journey by air-conditioned vehicle to Oświęcim. Enter the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum for a 3.5-hour guided tour of the former Nazi concentration camps. Hear how 1.3 million Jews, along with prisoners from Poland, France and Italy were murdered there during World War II.