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Uzdrowisko - Kopalnia Soli Wieliczka

NZOZ Non-public Health Care Centre Salt Mine Wieliczka

NZOZ Non-public Health Care Centre Salt Mine Wieliczka
Uwagi nt. dostępności: godziny otwarcia: pon., wt., czw., - 7:00
Park Kingi 1, 30-020 Wieliczka Region turystyczny: Małopolska
Tourist subregion: Krakowski
tel. +48 122787537
fax. +48 122882773
uzdrowisko@kopalnia.pl http://www.uzdrowisko.kopalnia.pl
Type of health and beauty amenities: Health resort
Parking: Car park
Dojazd: Autobus(odleglosc): 0, Bus(odleglosc): 0, PKP(odleglosc): 0, PKS(odleglosc): 0, Lotnisko(odleglosc): 0,
Location: In the city centre
Wieliczka owes its fame not to the underground sanatoria, but to the UNESCO-listed salt mine. The salt mining traditions in Wieliczka are very old and date back to 3500 B.C. In the past no tunnels were dug in the earth; the salt was obtained by extracting and evaporating brine from the local springs. However, it is known that the construction of the mine started in the 13th century, when the first chambers and corridors were dug. The underground sightseeing tour includes 22 most interesting chambers, including the St. Kinga chapel with salt altars, low reliefs and other details. According to the legend, salt in Wieliczka and Bochnia was discovered thanks to none other than St. Kinga herself. She was a Hungarian princess and the wife of a Kraków prince Boleslaw the Chaste. She is said to have thrown her ring into one of the Hungarian salt mines before her marriage. After coming to Poland she pointed to a spot in Wieliczka and ordered digging. A lump of salt with Kinga’s ring was discovered underground. This is how the princess gave her new homeland a precious gift: salt deposits. In the chapel you can see, among other things, a salt statue of John Paul II and a low relief sculpted in salt – a copy of The Last Supper, a famous Leonardo da Vinci fresco. Apart from the tourist route, the mine also offers the underground part of the Kraków Saltworks Museum. It features plenty of exhibits related to the history and old techniques of salt mining in Wieliczka. It is also worth seeing, among other things, the large wooden mining machines.Apart from the underground tourist route, there are other notable monuments in Wieliczka. First of all, it is worth entering (for a fee) the other division of the Kraków Saltworks Museum, located in the old saltworks castle (“zamek żupny”). The stronghold emerged in the 14th century and was home to "żupan", an official in the old Poland who was responsible for the mine. Today part of the castle houses exhibitions that supplement the knowledge on salt mining, and...a huge collection of salt shakers!There are a few other interesting attractions “on the surface” in Wieliczka. It is worth mentioning the 17th century monastery complex of the Order of Friars Minor and the small wooden St. Sebastian church from 1581. Other monuments include a classical St. Klemens church from 1805, fragments of town’s defensive walls from the 14th century and a Baroque Classicist palace of the Konopka family from the 18th century.From Wieliczka you can head to Dobczyce (16 km). The town is situated on the Raba river, at the foot of a hill with the ruins of a royal castle. In front of the the castle gate, you will find a small heritage park featuring traditional regional architecture. On the way to Dobczyce it is worth stopping by an old small church in Dziekanowice, from the second half of the 12th century.An alternative route from Wieliczka takes you to Niepołomice, 12 km to the north west. The local Renaissance castle, built in the 16th century features beautiful arcaded galleries in the courtyard. The renovated interiors house a hotel, a cultural centre and an interesting museum. On the other side of the cobbled market square in Niepołomice you will find a Gothic church from the 14th century, founded by king Casimir the Great. Beyond Niepołomice stretches a vast area of the Niepołmice Forest, an interesting place for walking, hiking or cycling. You can walk through the forest along asphalt paths and visit numerous spots related to the history of royal hunting (the forest was the favourite hunting destination of the Polish monarchs). In the heart of the forest lies a bison breeding farm (closed to visitors).
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