Visiting the Site of the Death Camp




  • Attention! Since April 1, 2008 groups bigger than 10 people are requested to hire a headphone guiding system - cost: 4 zlotys per person
  • Attention! Because of a large number of visitors in the Museum, touring some of the main exhibition buildings may be difficult in some hours. Sometimes you need to wait upto 30 minutes to enter - that considers especially the block 11 ("The block of death"). While planning your visit in the Museum please take into consideration that the time of the visit may be prolonged
  • Admission to the grounds of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial is free of charge
  • Visitors in groups are required to engage a guide
  • Individual visitors may engage a guide
  • Individual visitors have the opportunity to join a group with a guide
  • For statistical purposes, please inform the information point about the number of visitors in your party and their country of origin
  • Taking pictures indoors is not allowed. Photography and filming on the Museum grounds for commercial purposes require prior contact with the Museum
  • It is recommended that children under 14 not visit the Memorial
  • While staying on the grounds of the Auschwitz Memorial please respect the site

To date, over 25,000,000 from all over the world have visited the Museum and Memorial. Since the early 1990s, over half a million people-almost half of them Poles, most of them young people-have visited each year. Almost 250,000 visitors come from over 100 foreign countries (mostly from the USA, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, and Israel).

How to reach the Museum:

I. Overall map

II. Detailed map

Opening Hours

Visiting:

I. What there is to see

II. Virtual tour of Auschwitz

III. Guides. Group reservations. Prices for guided tours.

IV. Visitors Services Section

V. Transportation between the Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau sites.

Information. Sale of publications about Auschwitz

Weather forecast for Oswiecim for the next 48 hours

Hotels in Oswiecim


MAP OF POLAND

(source: http://opera.infoplease.com/atlas/country/poland.html)


REACHING THE MUSEUM




After the reapportionment of the Polish administrative system in 1999, Oswiecim (pop. over 40,000) has been part of Malopolska province (provincial capital: Cracow). The city (Latitude N 50o01' - Longitude E 19o12' - height 241 m. asl.) is situated in the Oswiecim Basin, geographically a part of Upper Silesia. Three large cities lie within less than a hundred kilometers of Oswiecim: the mining and industrial center of Katowice, the hub of the Polish automotive industry at Bielsko Biala, and the pearl of Polish cities, Cracow (pop. 700,000, home of the Jagiellonian University, founded in the fourteenth century and the oldest Polish university). Katowice and Cracow have airports with connections to Europe and the rest of the world. The whole region enjoys frequent railroad and bus service, and a dense (although not necessarily first-class) road network. This allows unhampered access to Oswiecim by private car or public transport (For Polish Bus and Coach Service linking Krakow and Oswiecim see here). Train travelers can refer to the European train schedule provided by Deutsche Bahn of Germany or the regional one offered by Polish State Railways (both in English).

Detailed map for reaching the Museum

    • A - Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum (site of Auschwitz I). The visitor reception center is located inthe building adjacent to the parking lot
    • B - Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum (site of Auschwitz II-Birkenau)
    • C - Railroad station; adjacent Globe Hotel
    • D - International Youth Meeting House
    • E - PKS bus stop
    • F - Dialogue and Prayer Center
    • P - Parking

Opening Hours:

Admission to the Museum is free (see Guides). The Museum is open seven days a week during the following hours:

  • 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM December through February
  • 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM March, Novembe
  • 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM April, October
  • 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM May, September
  • 8:00 AM - 7:00 PM June, July, August

These are the hours for visiting the site of the camp. The office of the Former Prisoners' Information Section, Archives, Collections, Library, Administration, and other departments are open from 8:00 AM-2:00 PM, Monday through Friday. The Museum is open but does not offer guide service on the days of mass public events as announced in the media. The Museum is closed on January 1, December 25, and Easter Sunday.

Visiting:

I. What There Is to See

The grounds and buildings of the Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau camps are open to visitors in their entirety, with the exception of several blocks in Auschwitz I that house the administration, Museum departments, and storage. There is generally access to all barracks at Auschwitz II-Birkenau. The duration of a visit is determined solely by the individual interests and needs of the visitors. As a minimum, however, at least one-and-a-half hours each should be reserved for the grounds and exhibitions of Auschwitz I and for the Birkenau site. It is necessary to visit both parts of the camp, Birkenau and Auschwitz, in order to acquire a proper sense of the place that has become the symbol of the Holocaust.

  • Auschwitz I is where the Nazis opened the first Auschwitz camps for men and women, where they carried out the first experiments at using Zyklon B to put people to death, where they murdered the first mass transports of Jews, where they conducted the first criminal experiments on prisoners, where they carried out most of the executions by shooting, where the central jail for prisoners from all over the camp complex was located in Block No. 11, and where the camp commandant's office and most of the SS offices were located. From here, the camp administration directed the further expansion of the camp complex.

  • In the Auschwitz II-Birkenau camp, everything happened on a magnified scale. This is where the Nazis erected most of the machinery of mass extermination in which they murdered approximately one million European Jews. At the same time, Birkenau was the largest concentration camp (with nearly 300 primitive barracks, most of them wooden). Over a hundred thousand prisoners at a time were here: Jews, Poles, Roma, and others. The site of this camp contains places that are still full of human ashes; the greatest portion of what remains of the Auschwitz complex is here. The vastness of the space, the primitive barracks for the prisoners, the ruins or remains of other structures, and the miles of camp fence and roads give a full sense of what cannot be conveyed in words: infinite baseness, cruelty, and human criminality, and the specific camp architecture that served one purpose alone: the destruction of human beings.

  • From January 2005, the so-called Judenrampe has been commemorated. This is the siding located between Auschwitz and Birkenau and it was here that in 1942-1944 deported Jews, Poles, Roma, and others arrived. Up until May 1944 newly arrived Jews were selected by SS doctors there.

  • The first gas chamber, located beyond the borders of the Museum and started by the Germans in spring 1942, is also commemorated. It is located not far from Birkenau and is known as the Little Red House.

Tickets for screenings of the fifteen-minute documentary film about the first moments after the liberation of the camp may be purchased at the information point in the visitor reception building, at the site of Auschwitz I.

II. Guides

- Only guides licensed by the Museum are authorized to serve visitors.
- Visitors arriving in groups are required to engage a guide. This ensures efficient movement around the entire Museum grounds and full information about the museum, the buildings and their history, and the exhibitions.
- It is possible at set times for individual visitors to assemble into a group and engage a guide (in Polish, English, or German). Assembly times for these groups are available at the Museum.

Guides (there are more than 150 of them) are available to serve visitors in Croatian, Czech, Dutch, English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Spanish, and Swedish.

Guide services may be reserved:

- on the Internet
- or by telephone at (+4833) 843 21 33 / 844 81 00 / 844 80 99 – these numbers are available Monday through Friday from 7:00 AM to 3:00 PM local standard time (0600-1400 UTC)
- or by sending a fax to (+4833) 843 22 27
- or in person at the Visitor Reception Point at the Museum, where all other formalities can also be arranged. We recommend prior reservations in view of the large numbers of visitors and high demand for guide services.

According to their needs, visitors may engage a guide for a standard visit (up to 3.5 hours), specialist visit (6 hours), or a two-day visit.

A fee is charged for guide services.

III. Transportation between the Auschwitz I and Auschwitz II-Birkenau sites.

The three-kilometer distance between the sites of the Auschwitz and Birkenau Concentration Camps can be covered on foot through the camp "Interest Zone," where there were German factories, workshops, warehouses, offices, and camp auxiliary facilities during the Occupation, and where prisoners labored and died. Here, too, there are railroad sidings and platforms, the "ramps" where trains full of deportees arrived and where the SS carried out selections. There are parking lots near both camps for visitors travelling by car. There is also a shuttle bus that runs once an hour between Auschwitz I and Birkenau from April 15 to October 31.

Information. Sale of publications about Auschwitz.

There are information points at the entrances to both camps. We ask visitors to stop there for a moment, both for information and for statistical purposes. Publications on Auschwitz subjects can be purchased on the grounds of the Museum: guidebooks, albums, scholarly studies, memoirs, video cassettes, etc. Such books may also be ordered from the Memorial's online bookshop

Hotels in Oswiecim

***"GALICJA" Hotel

    address: ul. Dabrowskiego 119, 32-600 Oswiecim
    telephone: +48 33 843 61 15, 843 66 80
    fax: 48 33 843 61 16
    number of beds: At your disposal we have 32 extraordinary rooms (including 5 suites, located in the oldest wing of the building) equiped with TV Sat, telephone, Internet. 59 beds in total.
    restaurant: there are 2 restaurants (Polish and Italian cuisine) situated in XIX century rooms and cellars, open to the public
    parking : supervised, on the hotel grounds (car and coach)
    internet : e-mail, info
    information: The Galicja Hotel – probably the best hotel in town!
    Our hotel is associated with the warm home atmosphere rather than a typical uniformity and minimalism, which is a common practice in the industry. Our guest appreciate a unique atmosphere of XIX century postal stage coach station (established in 1818).
    Very good location – just a few minutes to The Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.
    Credit cards accepted.

International Youth Meeting House in Oswiecim

    address : 32-600 Oswiecim, ul. Legionów 11
    telephone : +48 33 8432107
    fax : +48 33 8432377
    number of beds :100 beds in 2-,3-, or 4-person rooms, with bathrooms, in the hotel pavilions. restaurant:
    a cafeteria and kitchen are available for guests.
    parking : supervised, on the hotel gorounds
    internet : e-mail , home site
    information :The hotel accepts telephone reservations. Several conference rooms and a library available. Full handicapped access. Service in Polish, English, and German. Credit cards accepted. The entire complex is situated in wooded, fenced grounds approximately 500 meters from the center of the city, 50 meters from the River Sola, and 1.5 kilometers from the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum.

Center for Dialogue and Prayer in Oswiecim

    address : 32-600 Oswiecim, ul. Maksymiliana Kolbego 1
    telephone : +48 33 8431000
    fax : +48 33 8431001
    number of beds : 45 beds in 2-, 4-, 5-, 6-, and 10-person rooms with bathrooms (the hotel is configured for organized groups)
    restaurant : open to the public, seats 80
    parking : supervised, on the hotel grounds
    Internet : e-mail, home site
    information : Telephone reservations accepted, credit cards accepted, located approximately 500 meters from the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum.

Hotel GLOBE in Oswiecim

    address : 32-600 Oswiecim, ul. Powstanców Slaskich 16
    telephone : +48 33 8430643, 8430632
    fax : +48 33 8430643, 8430632
    number of beds :120 beds in single, double, and triple rooms with bathrooms and telephones, as well as in suites. Conference room.
    restaurant: open to the public, seats 60
    parking : supervised, on the hotel grounds
    Internet: e-mail, info
    information : The hotel accepts telephone reservations, accepts credit cards, located approximately 2.5 kilometers from the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum. TV room, billiards room, and pub annexed to restaurant are available to guests.

"OLIMPIJSKI" Hotel in Oswiecim

    address : 32-600 Oswiecim, ul. Chemików 2a
    telephone : +48 33 8423842
    fax : +48 33 8474194
    number of beds : 50 in single and double rooms and in single and double suites with bathroom, telephone, and satellite TV.
    restaurant: seats 40, open to the
    parking : supervised, adjacent to hotel
    Internet : info
    information : Hotel accepts telephone reservations. Hotel complex is located in wooded grounds approximately 100 meters from the Dwory chemical works (the former IG Farben plant), 100 meters from the bus station, 2 kilometers from the center of the city and 5 kilometers from the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum.

Hotel "KAMIENIEC" in Oswiecim

    address : 32-600 Oswiecim, ul. Zajazdowa 2
    telephone : +48 33 8432564
    fax : +48 33 8432564
    Internet: e-mail, home site
    number of beds : 50 beds in 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-person rooms
    restaurant : seats 40, open to the public
    parking : supervised, adjacent to hotel
    information : Telephone reservations accepted, situated 3 kilometers from Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum.



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