Turda Salt Mine it’s probably one of the most important and interesting places to see from Transylvania.
If we were to place it in a classification, it would most surely be found in Top 10 places to see in Transilvania.
Being, as a settlement, near Cluj, almost all tourists that come to Cluj also get to visit Turda Salt Mine.
The improvement of the salt mine was restored between years 2008-2010. Therefore, some standards of modern visiting, were included. An elevator with bird’s eye-view was instaled, a wheel with gondolas, a recreation space with wharf was created in which tourists can boat.
According to a top made by the site businessinsider.com, Turda Salt Mine is situated on the 22th place in the top of the most spectacular sights to see out there.
During exploitation the mine was served by another entrance (the old entrance) through Francz Josef Gallery. Turda Salt Mine consists of an assembly of mine galleries and operating rooms.
The sights from the assembly of the salt mine are: the main entrance from The Salt Valey – Durgau (Valea Sarata – Durgau), Francz Josef Gallery (the old entrance), The extraction well hall – Josef Salt Mine (Sala putului de extractie – Mina Iosif), The balcony of Josef’s Salt Mine (The Echo Hall), Josef Salt Mine, Crivac’s Hall, The extraction well hall, The Call Hall – The Altar – The Wealthy Scale, Salt Mine Terezia’s Balcony, Terezia Salt Mine, Rudolf Salt Mine, Salt Mine Rudolf’s Balcony, Ghizela Salt Mine.
Warning! The Salt Mine has two entrances: the one from the city of Turda (Salinelor street, Nr 54B) and the main entrance (from Durgau). If you take the care, you can park it inside the Salt Mine’s parking – parking fee 5 lei/day.
Recommended season: the salt mine can be visited any time of the year, from Monday to Sunday.
During tourist season (june-august) the salt mine is very crowded. If the tourist stay doesn’t allow you the change of the date, don’t erase yet this sight out of your list, its visiting it’s worth it.
Visiting hours: 09:00 – 16:00. The Salt Mine can also be visited outside opening hours by paying a fee of 300 lei/hour – group of minimum 50 individuals.
Entering Turda Salt Mine is done individually, not in organized groups.
If you need a guide you have to pay a fee of 35 lei. For a guide in a language other than romanian you have to pay a fee of 50 lei.
- For groups of minimum 20 individuals, a free guide is being provided in terms of a prior reservation.
- For organized groups, at every 10th individual a free entrance is being ensured (the 11th individual)
Useful informations about the visit:
- inside Turda Salt Mine any entry of animals is forbidden.
- Inside the salt mine building there is an area where you can leave your pet (surcharge) until you visit the salt mine;
- inside the salt mine you are not allowed to consume any food;
- underground there is no phone signal;
- underground the medium temperature is about 12 degrees so it is indicated to be clothed appropriate;
- inside the pavilion from the main entrance you can find ATM;
Fees: adults – 20 lei/person; children or students – 10 lei/person; pensioners – 12 lei/person.
Subscriptions can be made for 7 days for the fees:
- adults – 15 lei/person,
- children or students – 8 lei/person;
- pensioners – 8 lei/person
The visit of Turda Salt Mine: begins with the descent down the stairs of a descendent gallery. The stepped gallery was dug only in the 1987-1988s to serve the tourism activity. It has 45m length and a level difference of 15 m with a number of 107 stairs.
Continuing the touristic tour we arrive to the horizontal gallery – Francz Joseph. Through this gallery the acces from also the old entrance is made (from the city of Turda, Salinelor street). During salt exploitation through this gallery the salt obtained from exploitation was evacuated.
From Francz Joseph gallery you will see the pointers that get you to Salt Mine Joseph’s Balcony.
The exploitation of the salt in Salt Mine Joseph began in 1740. The name was given to it in honour of emperor Joseph 2nd. The contact between the surface and the exploitation hall was being realised through two wells with a section of 6,5 mp. Through these wells were made both the entrance of the cutters inside the mine and the ventilation and eviction of the salt from underground.
The mine hearth is found at a depth of 115 m from the surface and 80 m below the transport gallery. The room’s shape and the lack of major communications with other mining works make it in this mine to be generated an intense reverb of the sound, for which reason the salt mine Joseph received the touristic appelation of „The Echo Hall”.
At the balcony situated at the top of The Echo Hall you can some vocalizations.
Continuing the touristic tour from the salt mine Joseph’s balcony we arrive in Crivac Hall, the machinery used for the extraction of the salt from the salt mine hearth. The crivac made out of wood that we find inside the salt mine was installed in 1881 and is the only machinery of its kind from salt mines in Europe which is still kept on the original location. In order to operate the machinery horses were being used, every arm of the crivac having had 1 or 2 horses.
Before the salt mine being equipped with wiring the only source of light inside the salt mine were the torches.
Coming out of the Crivac Hall we arrive to The extraction well hall, Salt Mine Rudolf’s. The technical room in which you are houses a well which connects the mining exploitation and the transport gallery Francz Joseph. The mining cable was centered in the midst of the well and it was linked to the crivac through which the traction was ensured.
The mining vessels were having the shape of big bags made out of cattle leather.
From the extraction well hall, the salt lumps were load into carriages and transported to being stored in Turda. The transportation was being made on narrow railway and the carriages were being pulled by horses.
The balconies made out of wood which unfold under the ceiling offer an extraordinary perspective on the entire underground hole. At 80 m beneath the limestones share of balconies you can see the tourists that walk among the developments.
To get down there you have two alternatives: descend the 13’s flooors by taking the elevator or by using the wood stairs. Even though it requires a little physical effort we suggest you to descend using the stairs. You will have more time to admire the mine, but you will also be able to stop whenever you want. It is important to know that at every floor of the stairs you can see, carved in stone, the year in which the respective horizon was exploited.
Before descending the stairs do not forget to walk on the balconies that are built along the Salt Mine Rudolf’s Hall. At the opposite end of the balconies is another package of steps on which you can descend at the base of Salt Mine Rudolf’s. Both alongside the walls and also along the ceiling the stratification of salt can be seen. Interesting stalactites of salt but also the beautiful chandeliers with which the mine was equipped hang from the ceiling.
Historic Salt Mine Rudolf: the opening works begin after 1853, in parallel with the opening works for Gizela Salt Mine and with those of Francz Joseph transportation gallery. The salt mine’s name was given to it in honour of prince Rudolf of Austria.
It is an exploitation room with a parallelepiped shape. To increase the ability to take over the rock pressure from the exploitation room’s ceiling, the cross section in the ceiling area is a trapezoidal one. The salt was exploited by cutting the lumps from the hearth room ( from the floor).
The length of the operating hearth is 85 and the width 50 m.
The exploitation of salt in Salt Mine Rudolf ceased in 1932 when Turda Salt Mine was closed for good for exploitation.
Within the developments made, the space for tourists was fitted with:
– a panoramic wheel – fee 8 lei/5 minutes/person;
– minigolf ground – rental fee 10 lei/30 minutes (you receive as an equipment 1 putter + 1 ball);
– table tennis – rental fee 1 table – 10 lei/hour;
– bowling runway – 10 lei/20 minutes;
– billiards table – 0,2 lei/minute; sports field – 100 lei/60 minutes;
– amphitheatre – 200 lei/60 minutes;
– boating on lake – 10 lei/20 minutes. Maximum 3 individuals (200 kg) (440 lbs) can enter the boat.
Within the salt mine (at the salt mine Rudolf’s base) there is also a first aid point.
Continuing the walk through Salt Mine Rudolf you will get to a footbridge that connects Salt Mine Rudolf to the wharf from the exploitation room of Salt Mine Terezia.
Salt Mine Terezia is the oldest work within the overall mining of Turda. It is an exploitation room of conic shape, the exploitation of salt being attained between 1690-1880. The cut of the salt lumps was being done inside the hearth mine.
The hearth mine is situated at 112 m below the surface. The hearth diameter is 75 m. The Hearth Mine is flooded with a lake with a maximum depth of 8m. This was created by the accumulation in the salt mine of water infiltrations. The lake salinity is 260g/l.
Ascending with the elevator or by stairs the 13’s floors, the tourist route will take you to the balcony from the Salt Mine Terezia’s ceiling. You can see from up there the touristic improvement of the lake. From the balcony we ascend on „the wealthy scale” in an area where an altar and also a little museum are arranged.
The tour is near to its end when we arrive again at the horizontal gallery Francz Joseph. Within the touristic assembly there is also a balneary recovery center .
The exit from the salt mine can be done at the same place you entered.