posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 08:01 PM
The “Wieliczka” Salt Mine is one of the most valuable monuments of material and spiritual culture in Poland. Each year it is visited by more than
one million tourists from all over the world.
It is also a world class monument, featuring among twelve objects on the UNESCO’s World Cultural and Natural Heritage List.
Today, the “Wieliczka” Salt Mine combines many centuries of tradition and modernity, the history of several hundred years and an underground
metropolis with extensive infrastructure.
The mine is a product of work of tens of generations of miners, a monument to the history of Poland and to the Polish nation – a brand, present in
Polish consciousness for centuries.
The Wieliczka Salt Mine (Polish: Kopalnia soli Wieliczka), located in the town of Wieliczka in southern Poland, lies within the Kraków
metropolitan area. The mine, built in the 13th century, produced table salt continuously until 2007, as one of the world's oldest salt mines still in
operation. From its beginning and throughout its existence, the Royal mine was run by the Żupy krakowskie Salt Mines. Commercial mining was
discontinued in 1996 due to low salt prices and mine flooding.
The mine's attractions include dozens of statues, three chapels and an entire cathedral that has been carved out of the rock salt by the miners. The
oldest sculptures are augmented by the new carvings by contemporary artists. About 1.2 million people visit the Wieliczka Salt Mine annually.
The Wieliczka salt mine reaches a depth of 327 metres (1,073 ft) and is over 300 kilometres (190 mi) long. The rock salt is naturally gray in
various shades, resembling unpolished granite rather than the white or crystalline look that many visitors may expect. During World War II, the shafts
were used by the occupying Germans as an ad-hoc facility for various war-related industries. The mine features an underground lake; and the new
exhibits on the history of salt mining, as well as a 3.5 kilometres (2.2 mi) touring route (less than 2% of the length of the mine's passages) that
includes historic statues and mythical figures carved out of rock salt in distant past. More recent sculptures have been fashioned by contemporary
I heard about this from a friend of mine and thought I would share it with all of you.
This was build long ago, with precision detail, deep underground. And, it might not be a pyramid, but it's damn impressive.
To think that ll of this is made out of salt and even the majority of the chandelier is as well, is mind blowing.
Anyway, I thought I would share this with all of you, and hopefully you can make it by there one day and see this amazing work of art in person. And,
conquer the 380 or so stairs to take you there.
Humans can create beauty too, and sometimes it is good to look at that side as well.