Wieliczka Salt Mine

A gala dinner is planned in Wieliczka Salt Mine on Wednesday, 8 October 2025.


  • The historic Wieliczka Salt Mine was inscribed on the UNESCO list in 1978 as one of the first 12 sites in the world.
  • one of the oldest rock salt mines in the world
  • the deepest point is 327 m
  • the Wieliczka salt mine is often included in the plans of official visits of politicians, crowned heads of state and members of royal families.
  • The temperature in the mine is around 17-18 degrees
  • The salt microclimate supports the treatment of upper and lower respiratory tract diseases, as well as asthma and allergies
  • Did you know that the mine is so huge that you can visit only 2% of the salt labyrinth?
  • There are nearly 2,500 of chambers in the Mine.

The Mine in numbers:

  • Levels: 9
  • Galleries: 245 km
  • Over more than 700 years, 26 shafts were struck in Wieliczka and 9 million m³ of post-excavation voids were drilled


At the end of the Middle Ages, 300–350 people worked in Wieliczka, and the annual production of salt reached 7 000 –8 000 tonnes. In comparison with subsequent epochs, the medieval mine was not yet operating on a maximum scale. Mining was still seasonal, and the mine was open only in the months when no agricultural works were carried out. Until the end of the 15th century, there were only four mining shafts and one underground level in the mine.

The first tourist whom we know by name was Nicolaus Copernicus. He probably visited the mine in 1493. In remembrance of this event, a monumental salt figure of the brilliant astronomer was set up in a chamber named after him.

The period from the 16th to the 18th century became a time of dynamic change. The mine moved to a year-round working schedule. The first maps of the underground were created at that time. In the 16th century, the search for salt below the first level began, and in the middle of the 17th century, the mine reached the third level. The number of tourists grew steadily, and mentions of Wieliczka appeared more frequently in European literature.

In 1772, Wieliczka came under the rule of the Habsburg monarchy as a result of the partition of Poland. “Wieliczka” was the largest production plant in Galicia at the time, and one of the most important companies in the entire empire. During this period, tourism became an important source of income for the company.

In 1774, guest books were introduced to be signed by visitors. They have been preserved to this day and are a valuable historical resource. During the interwar period (1918–1939), the Wieliczka underground was visited by about 120,000 people. After the World War II the mine grew to nine levels, with a maximum depth of 327 metres. The year 1978 proved to be important for the contemporary history of the mine, bringing the addition to the UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage List. Since 1976, ‘’Wieliczka’’ has been listed in the register of monuments. Now the salt underground is visited every year by nearly 2 million visitors from all over the world.  

More information about the mine can be found on the website: https://www.wieliczka-saltmine.com/individual-tourist/about-the-mine/history-of-the-mine

Tourist Route – discover the secrets hidden deep underground!


Tourist Route by the numbers:

  • average tour time (including the exhibition of the Cracow Saltworks Museum): 2-3 h
  • the temperature underground: 17–18ºC
  • route length: 3,5 km
  • the depth you will reach: 135 m


About Tourist Route:

  • landscapes that can’t be found on the surface: as saline lakes and beautiful underground chambers
  • the unique St Kinga’s Chapel
  • see majestic carpentry structures and unique salt sculptures
  • learn about old mining tools and machines and the methods of salt extraction and transport used in the past
  • there are more than 800 steps to climb
  • Important! Return to the top is only possible with the miner’s passenger lift