Auschwitz was a network of concentration and extermination camps built and operated in occupied Poland by Nazi Germany during the Second World War. It was the largest of the German concentration camps, consisting of Auschwitz I (the Stammlager or main camp); Auschwitz II-Birkenau (the Vernichtungslager or extermination camp); Auschwitz III-Monowitz, also known as Buna-Monowitz (a labor camp); and 45 satellite camps.
Auschwitz is the German name for Oswiecim, the town the camps were located in and around; it was renamed by the Germans after they invaded Poland in September 1939. Birkenau, the German translation of Brzezinka (birch tree), refers to a small Polish village nearby that was mostly destroyed by the Germans to make way for the camp.
Auschwitz II-Birkenau was designated by Heinrich Himmler, who was the Reichsfuhrer and Germany’s Minister of the Interior, as the locus of the “final solution of the Jewish question in Europe”. From spring 1942 until the fall of 1944, transport trains delivered Jews to the camp’s gas chambers from all over Nazi-occupied Europe. The camp’s first commandant, Rudolf Hoss, testified after the war at the Nuremberg Trials that up to three million people had died there (2.5 million exterminated, and 500,000 from disease and starvation), a figure since revised to 1.1 million, around 90 percent of them Jews. Others deported to Auschwitz included 150,000 Poles, 23,000 Roma and Sinti, 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war, and tens of thousands of people of diverse nationalities. Those not killed in the gas chambers died of starvation, forced labor, lack of disease control, individual executions, and medical experiments. Denis Avey, recently named a British Holocaust hero by the government of Britain, had escaped and spoke of conditions inside the camps.
On January 27, 1945, Auschwitz was liberated by Soviet troops, a day commemorated around the world as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. In 1947, Poland founded a museum on the site of Auschwitz I and II, which by 1994 had seen 22 million visitors – 700,000 annually – pass through the iron gates crowned with the infamous motto, Arbeit macht frei (“work makes you free”).
Traveling from Prague to Cracow via Auschwitz (Oswieczim):
6:00 pick up in Prague
8:00 – 8:15 Rest stop en route to Auschwitz / Oswiecim near Brno
10:00 – 10:15 rest stop near the Czech / Poland border
11:45 Arrival to Auschwitz / Oswiecim (Guided tour of the concentration camp is not included in the price of the transfer)
11:45 – 15:45 Sightseeing in main part of the Auschwitz camp as well as Birkenau II
15:45 departure towards Cracow
17:15 Arrival to Cracow
Traveling from Cracow to Prague via Auschwitz
8:00 pick up in Cracow
09:15 arrival to Oswieczim concentration camp
09:15 – 13:15 touring of the camp
13:30 departure Auschwitz and continue transportation to Prague
15:30 rest stop on the way to Prague near the Czech border
17:30 rest stop on the way to Prague near Moravian capital Brno
19:30 arrival to Prague
Pick up points:
At the hotel: the driver will meet you at the hotel lobby
At the apartment: the driver will be waiting in front of the building
Other: to be agreed
In Auschwitz: the driver will remain on your disposal. The baggage can be left in the car and will be looked after the driver.
Prices includes VAT, diesel, wage of the driver, car rental, all fees and taxes. The tip for the driver is not included, however the driver will never seek for the tip. Tipping is voluntary. The payment can be done in CZK, EUR, USD or credit card. The credit card payment is made in Czech currency according to current payment policy. The parking fee at the Auschwitz central car park is included.