Wieliczka Salt Mine
"The historic Salt Mine in Wieliczka is the only site in the world where mining has continued since the Middle Ages.
Lying on nine levels, its original excavations (longitudinals, traverses, chambers, lakes, as well as lesser and major shafts)
stretch for the total of 300 kilometres: reaching the depth of 327 metres
they illustrate all the stages of the development of the mining technology
over time." - the quotation comes from the justification of entering the Wieliczka
Salt Mine into UNESCO's 1st World List of Cultural and Natural Heritage on 8th September,
1978 together with 11 other sites from all over the world.
The mine is also notable for a long tradition of tourism.
The famous breath-taking site has been visited over the centuries by Nicolaus Copernicus
, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Alexander von Humboldt, Dimitri Mendeleev, Boleslaw Prus,
Ignacy Paderewski, Pope John Paul II, and crowned heads of state, not to mention millions
of people from all over the world. Included in the tour is a stunning "underground town"
with lakes, passages, and the marvelous St Kinga chapel.