Wieliczka salt mine saw record 1.5 million tourists
Chapels excavated in salt, sculptures, salt lakes underground and numerous traces of exploitation of salt deposits makes of this mine a place of forced vision.
Visitors to the mine can enjoy a huge variety of things to do, including shopping, eating a delicious lunch, concerts, visiting the health spa and even meeting with the miners.
Belonging to the UNESCO List of Global Cultural and Natural Heritage since 1978, the salt mine Wieliczka, one of the largest attractions in Poland, remains one of the oldest companies in Europe, with its origins dating back to the Middle Ages.
Following the history of salt from Wieliczka takes us even further back in time until about 6,000 years ago, when the prehistoric inhabitants who populated the region were collecting salt, extracting it from the brine waters of the spring.
In the past, salt was like gold, and Wieliczka was actually the jewel in the crown of the kings of Poland.
The salt of Wieliczka was well-known and appreciated everywhere, and for centuries, underground corridors have been visited by numerous famous people, including Copernicus, Chopin and Mendeleev.
Even today it is possible to meet royals and stars of Hollywood there.
With more than 2,300 cameras, 250 kilometers of corridors and 9 levels, the salt mine Wieliczka resembles a mythical maze, with several traces and marks that date back centuries.
Natural monuments, such as Crystal Grottoes created in the Miocene salt deposit, make it a truly impressive experience.
The area between 64 and 135 meters deep is one of the most valuable and beautiful areas of the mine. Every year, hundreds of unique events are held there - including balloon fights and jump rope jumping. The mine also hosts concerts, conferences, weddings and dances.
Earlier bookings are necessary and the price per person per night is PLN 120 ($28).
An overnight stay within the undergrounds of the Wieliczka mine combines sleeping in the specific and therapeutic microclimate of the saline undergrounds with a very quiet and peaceful night, physical and mental relaxation and an unforgettable experience.
This is also a marvellous place for persons with breathing problems as there are no allergens, bacteria and fungi as well as harmful electromagnetic radiation in the mine air abounding the modern outdoor environment on the surface. ■
What to read next