Nativity Scene Contest Exhibition

Monday, December 5, 2022 - Sunday, February 26, 2023

Buy a ticket
  • Monday, December 5, 2022 - Sunday, February 26, 2023

The most important beauty contest in the city? The 80th Kraków Nativiy Scene Contest, of course! The dazzling constructions compete in different categories and they all end up at the contest exhibition at Krzysztofory Palace.

The Cracovian tradition of making elaborate nativity scenes dates back to the 19th century. As the beautiful custom started falling out of favour during the interwar period, the municipal authorities came to the rescue in by launching the Nativity Scene Contest in 1937. The contest was resumed after the Second World War, with the Historical Museum of Krakow (Museum of Krakow) stepping in as the organiser. Today, the custom has reached international acclaim as Poland’s first entry on UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage List in 2018.


  • opening hours: Tue–Fri 9am–6pm, last entrance 5pm
  • tickets PLN 18/14, group members PLN 14/12, family PLN 36


For whom: for children, for seniors, for families
Other: acceptable for people with disabilities

The Krzysztofory Palace

Rynek Główny 35

Here you can see how Kraków has changed over the centuries, and in winter also marvel at the fabulously colourful Kraków nativity scenes.

The impressive historical mansion (called “palace”) standing on the corner of the Main Market Square is the main seat of the Museum of Krakow, which boasts several other branches. One of its highlights is the beautiful arcaded loggia of the courtyard, while the stately interiors have retained baroque stuccowork from the 18th century, and 18th-and 19th-century murals. Legend has it that the cellars and dungeons of the mansion reach as far as below St Mary’s Church, and the premises are likewise said to have housed a secret alchemist’s laboratory. Some say that even today you can meet a devil here who assumes the guise of a rooster to tempt rogues into his underground realm with a promise of discovering treasure…

Also held in the mansion are temporary exhibitions. Every December, the museum organises a competition on the Main Market Square of the famous Kraków nativity scenes. These are based on city’s most iconic architectural heritage, whether entire edifices or just details, on the Main Market Square. Later, the post-competition presentation of these fabulously colourful miniature wonders of architecture can be admired at the Krzysztofory.

Tickets to permanent exhibition PLN 28/24, family PLN 56, group members PLN 24/22

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