A Proper Poland Pilgrimage

August 21st – September 1st, 2023
$4,500 (plus air)
Priest: Father Peter Idler

Europe is currently open without any COVID restrictions.

As with all The Catholic Traveler pilgrimages, this one includes daily Mass, my favorite local guide, excellent hotels, amazing meals in some of the best restaurants, wine with meals, and all your tips to our local guide, our driver, and our servers.

Our pilgrimage begins in Vilnius, Lithuania with the original Divine Mercy image and ends in Krakow, Poland with the Divine Mercy Shrine. We will focus on the lives of Saint Faustina, Pope Saint John Paul II, and Saint Maximilian Kolbe. We will climb mountains, raft rivers, and go underground into salt mines. We will also celebrate the Feast of the Black Madonna in Czestochowa!

Is this pilgrimage trip for you?

You need to be flexible.
This pilgrimage is not for grumpy people or those unable to be joyfully flexible. Europe is fully back to normal, but the world is still a bit uncertain. While I don’t expect any complications, we have be able to adjust our plans if needed.

So if you are easy-going and excited to travel, even with some uncertainties mixed in, this could be the trip for you!

You should be in good physical shape.
We will do a lot of walking, much of it outside, and much of it on uneven ground. We average around 5 miles per day. Please do consider this before signing up.


August 21st: Arrive Vilnius and transfer to the hotel. Dinner included. Overnight in Vilnius.

August 22nd: Today we will explore the town of Vilnius, including the miraculous icon of the Mother of Mercy in the Gates of Dawn. We will visit the Old Town and several nearby churches, including the Divine Mercy Shrine, where we will see the original image of Divine Mercy. After Mass, you’ll have the remainder of the day free. We will meet this evening for dinner in a lovely 17th century building. Dinner included. Overnight in Vilnius.

August 23rd: After Mass this morning, we travel to Warsaw, Poland. We will make a few stops along the way. Dinner included. Overnight in Warsaw.

August 24th: Today we celebrate Mass at the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy, where Saint Faustina entered the convent. We have a guided tour of the reconstructed Old Town with its quaint cobblestone streets and elegant architecture. Dinner on your own tonight. Overnight in Warsaw.

August 25th: This morning we travel to Niepokalanow to visit the community founded by Saint Maximilian Kolbe. We celebrate Mass in his chapel and visit his rooms. From here we head to Czestochowa. After dinner, we will join in the night vigil at Jasna Gora. Dinner included. Overnight in Czestochowa.

August 26th: Today is the feast of Our Lady of Częstochowa! We will visit the Jasna Gora Monastery and celebrate Mass here. Later we travel to Zakopane. Dinner on your own tonight. Overnight in Zakopane.

August 27th: We have an exciting day today! After Mass, we will take a raft trip down the Dunajec River (it’s relaxing). We will go through the Pieniny Gorge, and see mountains, cliffs, and gorgeous wild scenery. Next we will ride horse drawn carriages through the forest where we will have lunch cooked over a bonfire. Then we take a funicular up the Gobalowka mountain for an amazing view. Lunch and dinner included. Overnight in Zakopane.

August 28th: This morning we visit one of Pope Saint John Paul II’s favorite pilgrimage spots, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska. We will celebrate Mass here before driving to the cliffside monastery of Tyniec Abbey. We continue this afternoon to Krakow. Our hotel is right on the main square. Lunch and dinner included. Overnight in Krakow.

August 29th: After starting our day with Holy Mass, we will tour the city. We will visit the Wawel Cathedral, the Market Square, and Saint Mary’s Church. You have the afternoon free to explore. Dinner on your own tonight. Overnight in Krakow.

August 30th: This morning we visit the birthplace of Pope Saint John Paul II, Wadowice. We will visit his family home, which has been converted into an excellent museum. We will visit the church where he was baptized and received his first Holy Communion, we will have Mass here. From the joyful town of Wadowice, we head to the horrible Concentration Camp, Auschwitz. After a sobering visit, we return to Krakow. Dinner included. Overnight in Krakow.

August 31st:
Today we visit the Divine Mercy Shrine and the tomb of Saint Faustina. We will celebrate Mass here. Next we will visit the nearby Have No Fear Center, which contains relics of Pope Saint John Paul II. This afternoon we visit Europe’s oldest salt mine, in the town of Wieliczka. Dinner together. Overnight in Krakow.

September 1st: Flights home from Krakow.


$4,500 per person – ground only.

The cost is per person, in double occupancy, meaning two people to a room.

Your $1,000 per person deposit secures your space. Deposit is fully refundable for two weeks.

Final payment of $3,500 is due June 20th, 2023. Final payment is nonrefundable.

Traveling alone?
I match singles with other traveling singles (of the same sex) and that always works out great. If you are uncomfortable sharing a room with a stranger, you can request a single room for an additional $1,200.

Included in the price

Accommodations for 11 nights
We are staying two nights in a five star hotel in Vilnius, Lithuania.

We are staying two nights in a five star hotel in Warsaw, Poland.

We are staying one night in a four star hotel in Czestochowa, Poland.

We are staying two nights in a five star hotel in Zakopane, Poland.

We are staying four nights in a five star hotel in Krakow, Poland.

Breakfast daily plus 10 additional meals, including 8 meals in some excellent restaurants. 1 meal over a bonfire and 1 meal at our lovely hotel in Czestochowa.

Drinks, including wine, are included in all our dinners.

All group ground transportation
We’ll be traveling in a private motor coach.

Full time service of a local tour guide
A local guide will be with us throughout the pilgrimage.

Full time service of a tour director
I’ll be with you at all times.

No hidden costs
If we do it as a group, it’s included in the price! You are responsible only for things you do on your own, souvenirs you wish to buy, and Mass donations directly to the churches.

Guaranteed price
Once I receive your deposit, your tour price will not go up!

All tips for group meals, guides, and drivers
Would you believe that many tour companies require you to tip as you go? Not only does that add to the advertised sticker price of a tour, it’s also a huge hassle to you! No need to worry about that here. Tips are already included.

Entry fees and tours
All entry fees and tours to our included group activities.

You time
We have a lot planned, but time on your own is important. We take our time in churches to give you the opportunity for prayer and reflection. We also include free time for you to explore, shop, and relax.

Not Included

Your flights

Our pilgrimage begins in Vilnius, Lithuania. Airport code: VNO
You should arrive at VNO no later than August 21st. Our only activities this day will be a late afternoon Mass, followed by dinner.

Our pilgrimage ends in Krakow, Poland. Airport code: KRK
You should depart no earlier than the morning of September 1st. Our last group activity is dinner on the 31st, and you have the hotel room until the morning of September 1st.

Most airlines are offering free changes should anything happen to the trip. Some airlines are not offering refunds, but rather a credit.

If you need to cancel your trip for any reason, or if the situation in Europe changes and we need to cancel or postpone the trip, it’s your responsibility to work with your airline to cancel, reschedule, or request refunds.

Entry & Exit Requirements

All COVID related entry and exit requirements have been dropped for travel to and from Europe.


There are no vaccination requirements.


There are no mask requirements in Poland or Lithuania.

Openings and Closings

Everything in Poland and Lithuania is currently open. But keep in mind that things can change. Again, we need to be flexible. If something unexpectedly closes, we will look for a good alternative.


I want you to feel comfortable signing up for my pilgrimages.

If Poland changes their requirements for entry, and you decide that doesn’t work for you, you will be refunded 100% of the cost of the pilgrimage.

If you need to cancel for any reason at all up to 90 days before the start of the trip, you will be refunded 100% of the cost of the pilgrimage.

If you need to cancel for any reason at all within 90 days of departure, you’ll get everything back minus the deposit.

Trip insurance is not required, but is a wise investment in case something comes up while you are in Europe. If you think there is any chance you may need to cancel, I recommend you purchase travel insurance. A “Cancel for Any Reason” plan will let you, well, cancel for ‘most’ any reason. Most plans should allow for at least a 75% refund should you need to cancel at any time before departure. I have a friend who specializes in trip insurance, you can contact him directly, but you are under no obligation to use him and I don’t get any sort of kick backs, so shop around and find what is best for you.

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