If you plan to fly to Cracow, you have two options: Cracow or Katowice.

Cracow International Airport

Cracow has its own small airport, appropriately named after Pope John Paul II, who was born near the city. Cracow Airport is the main airport serving the city. Most locals and a few signs, though, still refer to it as Cracow Balice or simply “Balice,” which is the name of the little town closest to the airport. 

The majority of tourists to Cracow will arrive via John Paul II International Airport, which is located about eight miles west of the city center. The airport is the second busiest in Poland, with its single terminal handling up to 1.5 million passengers a year. Passengers will find Cracow Airport well equipped and conveniently located, with good transport links to the city center. The airport’s single terminal handles all domestic and international flights, with the terminal divided into Arrivals and Departures zones.

If you are arriving to Cracow from European countries, RyanAir and EasyJet flights usually provide the lowest fares and connect Cracow with 29 cities. 

There are also many other choices. Eurolot operates direct flights from Amsterdam, Zurich, Florence, Hamburg, Vilnius, L’viv and Dubrovnik – and fares are usually quite reasonable. You can always use Lufthansa, Austrian or LOT Polish Airlines to book a connecting flight through Munich, Vienna or Warsaw. Czech Airlines operate direct flights from Prague; Aeroflot Russian Airlines operate direct flights from Moscow.

Katowice Airport is located about 100 km from Cracow. Katowice is a perfectly acceptable location to fly to, but it’s a bit like Luton is in London, so be prepared for a 90-minute bus or taxi ride into Cracow.

A fair number of routes also land at nearby Katowice airport, such as the ones offered by Wizzair from London, Paris and Barcelona that operates flights from 20 European destinations.

Fares vary in price drastically; off peak, it is possible to find cheap flights to Cracow and pick up a bargain, but in the height of summer you will pay considerably more.