Wieliczka Salt Mine – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Wieliczka Salt Mine, in the town of Wieliczka, in Poland’s KrakÃ³w metropolitan area, has been in continuous operation since the 13th century, and still produces table salt. It is one of the world’s oldest operating salt mines (the oldest is at Bochnia, Poland, 20 kilometers from Wieliczka).
The mine reaches down to a depth of 327 meters, and is over 300 km long.
The Wieliczka salt mine features a 3.5-km tourist route (less than 1% of the length of the mine’s passages) that includes statues of historic and mythic figures, all sculpted by miners out of the rock salt. Even the crystals in the chandeliers are fashioned of salt. Also featured are beautifully carved chambers, chapels, an underground lake, and exhibits on the history of salt mining. The mine is justly referred to as “the underground salt cathedral of Poland.”
Some 800,000 persons visit the mine each year.