There are so many things we use in our day to day life, without knowing its origin and one such thing is salt. So when we found out that there was Salt Mine tour near Salzburg, it became an interesting part of our vacation itinerary. The whole experience was incredible and this visit became the highlights of our trip, to know more keep reading.
The Hallein Salt Mine, also known as Salzbergwerk Dürrnberg, is an underground salt mine located on the Dürrnberg plateau above Hallein, Austria. The mine has been worked for over 7,000 years since the time of the Celtic tribes and earlier.
Getting to Hallein Salt Mines
There are multiple ways to reach Hallein Salt mines from Salzburg:
- By Car – If you have your own car, then it’s a 33 mins drive (20.5 Km) from Salzburg to Salt Mine Durrnberg.
- By Bus (1 Change) – It takes 46 mins to reach the Salt mine by bus no 170 from Salzburg Makartplatz to Hallein Stirneiskeller and then bus no 41 to Bad Dürrnberg Salzbergwerk
- By Train + Cab – It takes 35 mins journey which includes train journey of 24 mins and a private cab from the Hallein station to the salt mines. The details of the cab we hired are: DES IS’A TAXI e.U. 5400 Hallein
Address: Brennerhofstraße 13, 5400 Hallein, Austria
Phone: +43 6245 70400
Mining Rock Salt experience
The guided tour is 90 mins which cover 1 kilometer of the mines. We started our tour by putting on white coveralls to protect our clothes inside the mine and then boarded a specially designed electric train that took us 400 meters (1,300 ft) inside the mine. After the 10 min ride, we had to walk through the mystical tunnel to reach our first stop, which was a small theater that showcased a short movie on the life of Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg who earned a lot of wealth because of salt trading and developed Salzburg.
After the movie, our tour guide gave us instructions on using the miner’s wooden slide. Then we were lead to two sets of 42 meters (138 ft) wooden slides, where we had to sit on the two wooden rails and slide quickly down to the lower level of the mine. The short ride gave us a good rush of adrenaline, it was fun.
As our trip continued, we learned some more history of the salt mine, especially how millions of year earlier the oceans were covered by land and the water evaporated leaving the salt deposited beneath the earth surface and how Prehistoric salt mining was done in the 6th century BC.
As we proceded further, there was a boat trip across an underground salt lake, it was something totally unexpected as we could never have imagined a lake about 200 m below the earth’s surface.The boat ride was beautifully planned with stirring light show and enchanting music.
As we went deeper into the mines, we reached as low as 210 meters underground. On our way, we saw some historic ways of doing salt mining. Finally, an escalator took us back to the station base, from where we once again enjoyed the electric train ride back to the fresh air and radiant sunlight.
Important: The mines often close down for maintenance and the tours are pretty packed, so please check the website for details and pre-booking. Website: https://www.salzwelten.at/en/hallein/
After completing the 90 mins tour, it was almost lunchtime and the mine cafe had some good vegetarian options to curb our hunger. We had hot vegetable soup, tomato soup, and french fries…Yum!
Other things to do in Hallein
Shopping – The salt mine tour has a good souvenir shop that has a variety of jewelry, rock salt lamps and obviously a lot of rock salt that you can take home.
Visit Celtic village – A replica of the 2,600-year-old Celtic village is created right next to the salt mine in Hallein. Immerse yourself in the daily life of the Celts, stroll through their homes and workshops.
Visit the Hallein town center – As we took a cab back to the Hallein Station, our cab driver gave us a quick detour of the Hallein old town center which dates back to 12th century or even more. If you have some extra time on hand, you will surely enjoy a quick tour of the town center.
This video is a snapshot of the amazing experience. Hope you enjoy 🙂
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