The Cracow Gate

The Cracow Gate is one of the most valuable examples of the development of the medieval defence system.

The main structure of the gate originates from the 14th century, upper storeys were rebuilt in the Renaissance style at the beginning of the 16th century with an attic and two round turrets on the top. There are two rectangular windows between the bays of the upper level, and four embrasures in semicircular bays of the attic.

The Cracow Gate
The Cracow Gate. Photo by P. Walczak

Stone stairs in the western wall led to a sentry walkway running along the defensive walls. The projecting part of the gate has a vaulted arch that used to house an iron portcullis which closed the gate from the inside. It was connected to a drawbridge.

From the outside, the gate had an oaken door. A square gatehouse that protruded outside and was connected with the gate itself by means of a so called “neck” was an additional protection of the entrance, safeguarding the chain drawbridge located here.