Krakow, Poland, boasts plenty for a traveler to see. There are museums and opportunities to take in the arts. There are festivals, concerts, art exhibits and more.
But many visitors to Krakow also make time to see a sobering and solemn reminder of one of history’s darkest events: The Holocaust.
Auschwitz-Birkenau is a former Nazi concentration camp that sits about an hour west of Krakow. Tour guide Christopher Skutela often leads groups of visitors to see the site. He says it’s an important place to commemorate the millions of Jews and others killed during the Holocaust.
“We commemorate the victims, of course, but it brings us a lot of reflections about our life today,” he said, “that we should build these bridges…and that having different stereotypes and hate toward the other can lead to such an awful time, to such a hell on earth.”
KNKX travel expert Matthew Brumley, who spoke with Skutela for this week’s edition of “Going Places,” has been to Auschwitz a few times.
“As some of the people who went through these things personally, as they pass away, there are more and more deniers popping up all over the planet,” Brumley said. “The more people who can witness places like Auschwitz with their own eyes, makes it much more difficult to do that.”
Thursday, April 12, is Yom Hashoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day. In Seattle, the Holocaust Center for Humanity will hold commemorative events all day on Sunday, April 15.
"Going Places" is 88.5's weekly exploration of travel. Our travel expert, Matthew Brumley, is co-founder of Earthbound Expeditions on Bainbridge Island, which provides small group travel to clients including KNKX. Never miss an episode again. Subscribe to Going Places with iTunes, Google Play or Stitcher.