Wieliczka: The Amazing Polish Salt Mine Near Krakow
Wieliczka is a very popular Polish salt mine near Krakow. It is 327 meters deep and extends through chambers and horizontal passages for more than 287 kilometers, or about 178 miles. Rock salt is natural and has different colors in shades of grey.
Until 2007, the Wieliczka Salt Mine produced table salt continuously and is considered as one of the world’s oldest salt mines. Today it is a historical monument and is visited by more than 1.2 million tourists a year.
What to see in the Wieliczka Salt Mine?
Today the salt mine is a historical museum and attraction centre, where you can find a labyrinthine of corridors, wells, exhibits of historical salt extraction technology, four chapels, an underground lake, and many statues carved by miners out of rock salt. You can also see some more recent sculptures that contemporary artists made.
This Polish salt mine near Krakow is considered to be one of the most important tourist attractions in the area. It is on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list and it was included in the list in the year 1978. All its underground interiors allow you to experience the magnificent human effort and the wonder of nature.
It is a fascinating mix of wooden structures with the tunnels that are stretching across 287 kilometers and down 9-levels of corridors. It’s a collection of spacious chambers with chapels that were carved out of the salt, allowing you to view the works of art sculpted by the miners’ hand.
You will be able to breathe all the healthy properties that the place offers you due to its microclimate. It also has a reception room and a chapel for private functions such as weddings. It has wooden stairs that allow you to access the mine’s 64-meter depth. There is also a 36-person elevator that brings visitors back to the surface.
A paradise worth visiting
This Polish salt mine near Krakow allows you to enter into the amazing world of salt. You will be able to see along the way how the salt crystals take the natural form of stalagmites and stalactites. It is an attraction that you will only see in this Wieliczka mine.
The Chapel of St. Kinga within the Salt Mine
The Wieliczka Mine is a tourist route with chapels and 22 chambers connected by tunnels reinforced in different ways. One of the most important and representative places of the mine is the Chapel of St. Kinga, where you will see chandeliers, statues, and works of art all made of salt.
This chapel was completed in 1895 by two brothers who were visionaries. Their effort to complete this beautiful chapel took years of hard work and dedication.
St. Kinga’s Chapel’s image features a saline statue of Saint Kinga carved in 1914 by Jozef Markowski. This statue is designed with halite crystals and is located 101 meters below ground level, being the world’s deepest temple. In this place, wedding ceremonies, masses, concerts and all kinds of events are held.
The underground paths of the Wieliczka Mida
You will have to climb or descend 800 steps within Wieliczka, the Polish salt mine near Krakow. Down at the mines, you will be greeted with wonderful salt structures and the history of salt mining near Krakow. You will be able to walk the great halls and experience how miners lived and worked through the ages.
For information on tours and opening times visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine Official Website.
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