DISCOVER & EXPERIENCE
In the heart of the Salzkammergut: a journey to the origins of salt production
It simply can’t be denied: Salzwelten Hallstatt is a place of superlatives! Beginning with the location, in one of the most beautiful spots in the entire Salzkammergut – in UNESCO World Heritage Hallstatt. And then there’s its 7000-year history, making Salzwelten Hallstatt the oldest salt mine in the world. You feel the very breath of those far-distant times, as you roam the tunnels, stroke the roughly hewn rock walls with your hand and hurtle down the 64 meters-long miners’ slide. And last but not least in our cavalcade of superlatives: Amid the prehistoric tunnels, the oldest wooden staircase in Europe was discovered, used by people some 2800 years ago to carry “white gold” out of the mountain. Today, this valuable exhibit is the central eyecatcher of the “Bronze Age Cinema”. A factually accurate animation brings the arduous daily work routine of the miners to life. So, are you ready for a personal encounter with all of the Salzwelten superlatives? You are about to be completely enthralled during your excursion through Salzwelten Hallstatt!to the blog
What you should know before your visit to Salzwelten Hallstatt
- Tours meet: 30 minutes before the start of the tour at the valley station of the Salzbergbahn funicular in Hallstatt
- Duration of the entire visit: at least 3 hours (including the ride up and down on the Salzbergbahn, the guided tour of the mine, the walk across the Hallstatt high valley to the Salzwelten Hallstatt entrance building and back again)
- Duration of the mine tour: around 90 minutes
- Tour route: The Salzbergbahn will carry you quickly and comfortably up to the Hallstatt high valley, while the panorama lift will bring you in a matter of moments to a scenic bridge. From there, you will walk gently uphill for approximately 15 minutes until you come to the Knappenhaus entrance building. Now you will walk deep into the mountain. Once underground, you will explore for about 2 kilometers on foot. The mine train will then bring you back out into the daylight.
- Age restrictions: for children ages 4 and up
- Animals: dogs wearing a muzzle are permitted on the Salzbergbahn, but not in the mine itself. A dog kennel is available.
- Wheelchairs: the mine tunnels are not suitable for wheelchairs
- Absolutely wear warm clothing and sturdy shoes – the temperature inside the mountain is roughly 8° Celsius year-round, while the ground is very stony.
High above, gazing down far below – the Hallstatt Skywalk in the high valley
In only a few minutes, the Salzbergbahn funicular will take you on a steep ascent ending 360 meters above the rooftops of Hallstatt. A panoramic bridge will lead you to the Rudolf’s Tower. And then, suddenly, it lies there before you: an imposing 12-meters-long lookout platform extending out into the void like the points of a star – the Hallstatt Skywalk. If you venture all the way out to the point, you will be richly rewarded: on many a day, with the view of a virtually endless sea of clouds and mountains. On clear days, with the unique sight of UNESCO World Heritage Hallstatt, its narrow lanes and picturesque houses, and of course, of deep-blue, sparkling Hallstätter See. There you are perched, far above the vast world extending out below your feet. To settle down your pulse a bit, we now recommend talking a stroll on the trail of prehistoric settlers here amid the world-famous burial field of Hallstatt. Incidentally: Your ingenious companion during your excursion in the Hallstatt high valley is a free audio-guide app. With more information than you could possibly imagine!
Experience history up close: at an archaeological hotspot in the Hallstatt high valley
The Hallstatt high valley and the salt mine are absolute hotspots for archaeologists from around the world! Hardly surprising perhaps, since people were already living here in around 5000 BCE and an entire epoch of human history (ca. 800 to 400 BCE) was named after the famous burial grounds: the Hallstatt Period! Every summer, scientists from Natural History Museum Vienna specializing in Hallstatt, in collaboration with Salzwelten and Salinen Austria AG, continue their investigations of the gave fields and the prehistoric mine. One reason this site is so special: Due to the conserving effects of salt, much of the evidence of those early times has been preserved almost intact – a wealth of burial offerings, historic tools and even organic remains. And every summer, you can peek over the scientists’ shoulders as they go about their work. Incidentally: If you are looking for added adventure, you should consider joining a prehistoric expedition away from the regular routes toured by visitors – to places and treasures that are normally hidden in the darkness of the ancient tunnels.to the blog