Visiting the Wieliczka Salt Mine
What is Wieliczka Salt Mine, and where is it located?
In case you’re not familiar with it, let’s first see why the Wieliczka Salt Mine is such a popular destination in Poland. As you have probably guessed, it is a salt mine located in a small town (Wieliczka), around 15 km (9 miles) from Krakow. One of the oldest salt mines in Europe still in operation (active since the 13th century), the mine is now one of the top tourist attractions thanks to the artistic element introduced over the centuries by the miners. Today, the Wieliczka Salt Mine is an underground world made of salt, full of secrets and wonder. When taking a Wieliczka Salt Mine tour, you can discover chambers and chapels – all carved from rock salt. It is also a great place to see how mining techniques have changed over the centuries. The whole complex of Krakow salt mines has around 250 km (155 miles) of tunnels! However, many of them are not safe to tour, so only a small portion is available to visitors. Still, the part available to tourists is impressive enough to leave a lasting memory. If you want to know more details about the Wieliczka Salt Mine and its history, we invite you to read this post.
Things to know for visitors
Before embarking on a tour of the Wieliczka underground, you should be aware of a few things. The temperature in the mine is always around 17-18ºC, so keep this in mind when dressing for the day. As with most tours, comfortable shoes are essential. Apart from a long walk into the underground, there will be lots of stairs (around 800 to be precise). Since you’ll be underground, don’t expect to find a phone signal here – it’s a great place to disconnect. When booking an entrance ticket to the Wieliczka Salt Mine, you get a guided tour of the underground. There are 3 routes you can choose from – Tourist route, Miners’ route, and Pilgrims’ route.
The Tourist Route at the Wieliczka Salt Mine
Most visitors to Wieliczka, decide to take the tourist route. A Standard Ticket for an adult costs around 120 PLN for a tour in English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, or Russian. It is also possible to book tour guides speaking other languages. The tourist route is approx. 3.5 km (2 miles) long and takes you through the mine’s highlights. Among them are the underground lakes, salt sculptures, and St Kinga’s Chapel. The tour takes about 2 to 3 hours and groups can have max. 35 people. You can also visit the Graduation Tower for an extra fee (starting from 6 PLN).
Discounts are available for groups and families.
How to get to Wieliczka Salt Mine from Krakow
As mentioned before, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is located around 15 km (9 miles) from Krakow, in the town of Wieliczka. Since it’s one of the top tourist attractions in the area, and not that far from the city, getting to Wieliczka is not very complicated. If you don’t have your own car, you can opt for public transport. Train is the fastest and most convenient option as you can cover the distance in approx. 20 minutes. To catch the train, you have to go to Krakow Main Train Station (Kraków Główny) and disembark at Wieliczka Rynek-Kopalnia. From there, you have only about a 10-minute walk to reach the Wieliczka Salt Mine. A trip one way will cost you around 5,50 PLN and you can buy the ticket online or from a ticket machine at the station.
Visit Wieliczka Salt Mine with MrShuttle
Planning all the details of a trip can be exhausting, so if you’d like to just relax and not bother with too many boring details, consider booking an organized tour. All you need to do is book a tour you like, and we will take care of the rest. Forget about figuring out public transport or buying the tickets. Our Wieliczka Salt Mine Tour comes with a hotel pick-up, comfortable transport, and entrance tickets. We can even take care of your lunch if you so wish.
We also have a fantastic option for those who are short on time and would like to also visit Auschwitz while on their trip to Poland. Our Auschwitz Birkenau & Salt Mine One-Day Tour means that you can visit both places on the same day. You no longer have to choose which attraction to visit.
In case you’ve already booked your Wieliczka Salt Mine tickets, but are not a fan of public transport, we can also offer you a comfortable private transfer with door-to-door service.