Explore the great Wieliczka salt mine in Poland – by Mpho Rantao (Independent Online – November 3, 2018)


There are mines for various metals and minerals that are located around the world (or rather around the African continent), but there is the occasional mine that offers something different to society – like a salt mine.

If you travel to the town of Wieliczka, located just outside of Krakow, you will find one of the town’s greatest treasure – the salt mine. Considered one of the biggest salt mines in the world, the Wieliczka salt mine was in operation from the 13th century, producing table salt and only stopped its main functioning in 2007.

The attractions of the mine include dozens of statues and four chapels carved out of the rock salt by the miners, as well as supplemental carvings made by contemporary artists.

The Wieliczka salt mine reaches a depth of 327 metres and is over 287 kilometres long. The rock salt is naturally grey in various shades, resembling unpolished granite rather than the white or crystalline look that many visitors may expect.

It’s a very decorated mine

The salt mine is often referred to as the Underground Salt Cathedral of Poland and was made a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1978. Almost every carving and structure within the mine (excluding the lights and stairs) are made out of salt – including the chandeliers seen throughout the mine.

For the rest of this article: https://www.iol.co.za/travel/world/europe/explore-the-great-wieliczka-salt-mine-in-poland-17749501