Travelogue: Auschwitz Concentration Camp

Poland is not all about beautiful architectures, as seen in my photos HERE. It’s very rich in history- and that includes the sad and unbelievable inhumane stories of the Auschwitz camp. I had a tour in this famous concentration camp, which I just use to see in history books and documentaries.

Auschwitz was the largest Nazi’s concentration and extermination camp during World War II. The moment I set my foot on the Auschwitz grounds, the feeling was already different. Imagine, the first creature I saw was this…

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Is it a Crow? I’m not so sure! But isn’t it looks like the bird you see in thriller/ suspense movies?! Scary? Wait ’til you read my story.

Concentration Camp

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Hearing the stories of our tour guide while we walked around the camp gave me goose bumps. The smell of chambers made it even worse. I can’t really describe, but it is stinky!

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Those buildings are called “blocks”, which are numbered accordingly. Our tour guide brought us to different blocks where we saw the prisoners’ washrooms, beds, etc. Seeing all those is really heartbreaking. In block 4, there was this room with a pile of hair, which was cut from thousands of victims. Prisoners that were selected to work had all their body hair removed as soon as they arrived in the camp. This was their way to prevent typhus, which spreads through body lice. I saw how the hair in the exhibit was already deteriorating, which was really unsightly.

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If you noticed, all my photos are just outside. Cameras aren’t allowed inside the buildings.

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This is the area where the victims were shot. There were fresh flowers at the time of our visit.

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Block 11 was the most famous of all the blocks inside the camp. This was known to be the “prison within the prison”. The violators were put inside standing cells (about 16 sq ft with 4 men inside), starvation cells (no food nor water), and dark cells (with a very tiny window and solid door, prisoners die due to suffocation). At the basement of block 11, this was where the gas chamber was experimented. People were killed by releasing this gas called Zyklon B, a highly lethal cyanide based pesticide.

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gas chamber at the basement of the building

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This is the place where victims were hanged

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Crematorium

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This last photo is probably the most memorable one in this tour. Why? After taking picture of this crematorium, something unexpected happened. I was always the last person in our group since I love taking pictures (obviously). When I turned my back from this crematorium to catch up with the rest, someone poked my leg. I didn’t mind it since I thought it was our tour guide fooling around. But when I felt another tug on my leg, I turned my back expecting my tour guide. And you guessed it right… NOBODY WAS BEHIND ME! I was running like crazy to my mom! Now you know why I’ll never ever forget Auschwitz. LOL! But of course, more than this crazy experience of mine, I really felt disturbed. Even if I’ve heard and read so much about history, there’s still this feeling of shock / disbelief. It’s totally different when you read the Nazi stories in books, from seeing the actual concentration camp. It’s unbelievable how people can be so inhumane. It’s haunting. It’s disturbing.

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  • hi! 🙂 when did you visit Auschwitz? i was wondering why you weren’t able to take photos inside.. i went there last Sept, last year and i was able to take tons of pictures of their sleeping quarters, wash room, inside the gas chambers..including inside their mini museum

  • Lush Angel

    Hi Gayle. I was there 2009. Our tour guide didn’t allow to take photos inside. 🙁

  • Even a mere reading of your account already gave me chills. I pray that all the people who suffered there are now in peace. 😐