Wieliczka is the center of the oldest solar center in Poland, which existed several thousand years before the appearance of the Polish state. Salt was exploited here first from brines from salt springs, later from wells, and only in the 13th century rock salt was discovered in Wieliczka.
Annually, the Wieliczka Mine is visited by over a million people.
Today’s salt mine is a tourist attraction on a global scale. It is the only mining site open without interruption since the 13th century. It lies below the city on 9 levels (at a depth of 63 to 327 m). Original excavations have 2040 chambers and about 300 km of pavements. Interiors with a special character are salt chapels.
The interior of the chapel of St. Kinga – patron of miners. It was created since the 19th century, and its equipment elements are made of salt, including floors and original chandeliers. The oldest chapel of St. Anthony comes from the 17th century. The unique microclimate of underground salt chambers also treats people with upper and lower respiratory tract diseases.
In the historic basement, there are also conference and banquet rooms, where various types of events are organized: from intimate business meetings to concerts for several hundred people. The mine’s tourist route includes the most beautiful chambers and pavements, underground chapels and lakes as well as unique art monuments.
The III level houses the Krakow Saltworks Museum, where 14 chambers present, among others, salt mining equipment and devices. The most valuable exhibit is the handicraft – the corner of the Brotherhood of Diggers, made in 1534. More than a million people visit the mine annually.