The Polish city is thriving post–Cold War. Thankfully, many of its old-world traditions are also going strong.
$8 Statues Part of the ceiling of Wawel Castle was once adorned with nearly 200 carved wooden heads. At Krakuska Sztuka Ludowa, you can buy mini replicas to watch over your own throne. ul. Szewska 9, 011-48/12-430-21-04.
$15 Cheese plate Artisans in the town of Boleslawiec use sponge stamps to decorate pottery. This country maid conceals cheese slices under her skirt. Mila, ul. Slawkowska 14, 011-48/12-422-40-82, mila.zaprasza.net.
$13 Vodka Poles pride themselves on their fruit liquors. Some of these homemade spirits are bootleg, but the plum vodka sold at Krakowski Kredens is legit—and delicious. ul. Grodzka 7, 011-48/12-423-81-59.
$13 Earrings Roosters often appear in Polish folk art. At Maruna, designer Agnieszka Osikowicz incorporates the classic motif into her playful Plexiglas jewelry. ul. Miodowa 2, maruna.pl.
$15 Slippers High in the Tatra Mountains, residents make slippers, blankets, and clothing from thick felt and wool to keep warm during the bitter winters. Handel, Main Market Square, 011-48/12-422-33-53.
$18 Shirt Cartoonist Andrzej Mleczko has skewered Polish culture and politics for decades. His namesake shop in the Old Town carries items printed with his caricatures. ul. sw. Jana 14, 011-48/12-421-71-04.
$15 Paperweight Amber from the coast can set you back a few hundred dollars. The faux amber at Galeria Osobliwosci Este looks a lot like the real thing. ul. Slawkowska 16, 011-48/12-429-19-84.