History both glorious and tragic as Poland shows off its past

EVEN before the two of us set off for Poland, the thought of portraying Jewish history there — both glorious and tragic — was somewhat daunting.

There are many Jews who only travel to Poland on roots trips or to visit Holocaust sites, while many — especially Israelis — love Poland for its great food, picturesque countryside and historic cities.

Our destination: South-eastern Poland, close to the borders with Slovakia and Ukraine.

Most visitors to Kraków don’t travel beyond the city’s limits, but for us it was merely the gateway to the region.

It’s an hour from Kraków’s airport to the 14th-century town square of Tarnów.

The town hall at the centre of the square dominates, with its bell sometimes chiming on time, if the official winder has remembered to do his job.

A climb to the top rewards you with a great view of the town and particularly where its Jews once resided.

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