Go Deep

DSC_1448What place is big enough to fit the Statue of Liberty? Where can you find a 400 year old church 130 meters underground?DSC_1377
Not far from the Medieval City of Krakow, Poland is an underworld playground. A place excavated by miners since the 13th century. A respiratory haven where bacteria can not grow.DSC_1290
You can walk the halls and literally lick the walls if you desire or bungee jump if you want to feed the thrill seeker inside of you.DSC_1506
Welcome to the Wieliczka Salt Mine, one of the oldest working salt mines in the world!DSC_1561
This UNESCO World Heritage Site was one of our stops on our Eastern European Christmas Vacation. Thanks to Aunt Carolyn Jack for suggesting we visit this place a few years ago while we lived in Italy.DSC_1406
She’d sent us pictures of this incredibly detailed underground haven and suggested we make a trip since we love to explore. So we added it into our Christmas getaway. Was it worth the visit?DSC_1415
Yes and if you have children, especially boy children, this is an adventure where walking down 780 steps down into the underworld seems more like an amusement park ride than a chore.DSC_1215
We spent a few hours underground. Breathing in air that was the cleanest we’ve ever breathed. My son licked the walls and in fact we were told that you could lick in the same place, since salt does not harbor bacteria. My skin was in heaven. My pores were alive and shrinking. Almost everything is made from salt even the floors.DSC_1245
There are these wooden beams that are used to reinforce the mine. Salt preserves wood, preventing it from breaking down.DSC_1283
All sorts of fantastic sculptures are made all from grey salt. From Pope John Paul IIDSC_1430
to a carving of Leonardo’s the Last Supper in the King’s Church, 130 meters underground.DSC_1392
A brine lake is where we will rest for a bit. It is also the burial spot for a few miners who had too many spirits one night. They fell over board into the lake while singing and dancing. They died from the brine.DSC_1490
Looking for a different place to host a party? A venue no one will ever forget? You can rent out the party hall underground where if your food is a bit bland, you won’t run out of salt to jazz it up.DSC_1525
If you suffer from claustrophobia, I’m not sure this place is right for you but one thing you don’t have to worry about is having to climb up 130 meters where the green grass grows. There is an elevator that will take you back up and out of the earth and back into the light.DSC_1391
 This light was constructed with over 2,000 salt pieces. Truly beautiful and hangs in the King’s Church 400 feet underground.DSC_1416Salt, an item that was more expensive than gold and only available for Kings or the wealthy at one point in time, is in abundance here in the Wieliczka Salt Mine in Wieliczka-Poland. You just have to be willing to go deep to see both of them together.DSC_1315

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