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Turda Salt Mine

Helpful information

⧫ From Raven’s Nest: 1 hour and 20 min drive / about 58 km trip
⧫ Therapeutic spot
⧫ Warm clothes recommended
⧫ Check website for hours and prices 

⧫ No phone signal underground

⧫ATM available nearby

⧫Inside activities: boating, amusement games, Ferris wheel

Description

With over 2,000 years of history, highly preserved galleries, and a futuristic underground attraction, Salina Turda is the largest salt mine museum in the world, and easily the most incredible.

History

The deposit of salt formations from the Transylvanian plateau took place in middle Bandenian-Wielician. The absolute age attributed to the salt deposits from Transylvania is 13.6-13.4 million years.

Salt extraction on the site’s surface started in antiquity, but the work expanded underground during the Roman occupation of Dacia.

Salt was first extracted here during ancient times and the mine continuously produced table salt from the Middle Ages, the mine being first mentioned in 1075, to the early–20th century (1932).

Regardless of its history, this salt mine is not just a huge museum, but an epic tourist attraction. It was even ranked by Business Insider as the most beautiful underground place in the world.

Salt mines are claimed to have surprising benefits on one’s health, healing respiratory ailments, skin irritations, and fighting even mental lethargy and stress. This kind of therapy also known as halotherapy involves spending regular time in a salt mine/cave (nowadays even man-made), breathing the salt vapor, which according to the internet, it has been practiced from the 12th century. We must confess that after two hours spent in this wonderful salt mine below, we felt a slight improvement in breathing.

The museum

A salt mine that dates from the 17th century and has been transformed into a unique museum of salt galleries and machinery. After carving over three billion tons of salt, it has been used during the years as a cheese storage center to a bomb shelter in WWII after the excavations stopped in 1932. Since it was reopened 25 years ago, it has been modernized into a large museum, as well as a small amusement park, only to serve therapeutic needs as well. 

After passing through the long corridor, along with the crivac and Joseph mine, you’ll finally reach the Altar, Teresa’s balcony, and Rudolf mine. Here, you’ll find an amphitheater, an underground salt lake and diverse activities to spend time. You can visit the salt mine on foot or you can use the elevator to reach the bottom of Rudolf hall. There is also the option of paying a guide. 

The salt mine can be visited at any time during the year, with a tourist peak in the summer, also due to the one of a kind cooling experience. 

Since 1992, Salina Turda has been a halotherapy center and a popular tourist attraction

 

Iosif Mine

The Iosif Mine is also called “Echoes Room”, because it’s a conical chamber 112 meters deep 67 meters wide, and has a powerful echo. 

Crivac room

This room dates from 1881, and hosts a winch called “crivac”. It is the only machine of this kind in all salt mines in Romania and probably in Europe that keeps in its original location.

Terezia mine

Salt mining in this type of room left behind underground halls of impressive dimensions: 90 meters height and 87 meters diameter. A “cascade of salt”, an underground lake, stalactites and salt efflorescences complete the inert equilibrium of the giant bell.

Rudolf mine

42 meters deep, 50 meters wide, and 80 meters long, Rudolf mine is the last place where salt was exploited in Turda. 

Gizela mine

Gizela mine and technical rooms in the north-eastern extremity of the salt mine are similar to those of Rudolf mine, but much smaller because the salt exploration stopped shortly after the opening of this mine. 

The Turda Salt Mine, considered one of the oldest in the world (dating back from 17th century), was a bomb shelter, a warehouse for cheese storage and nowadays is a veritable history museum of salt exploitation, nesting an impressive amusement park where you can spend quality time boating on the lake, playing snooker, bowling, golf or ping pong, or have a drink while the kids play in their park. Not to forget the amphitheater which had us imagine the acoustic effect an opera or classical concert must have.

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