Salina Turda, an Underground Theme Park Formerly a Salt Mine

Salina Turda, From Salt Mines to Underground Leisure Wonders

Salina Turda, an underground theme park in a salt mine located in the Durgău-Valea Sărată area of Turda, the second-largest city in Cluj County, northwest Transylvania.

Moreover, Salina Turda spans 27 mi2, with a 120 m depth, enclosed by dark salt walls.

Every citizen of Turda sees the Salt Mine as a symbol and a provider of prosperity, health, and pride.

Additionally, the charming town of Turda, known for its medieval architecture and vibrant local culture, houses a salt mine complex that showcases geological richness in vast underground chambers and tunnels.

As visitors descend into the mine, they enter a surreal world with towering salt formations and cavernous spaces. This experience is marked by an unassuming structure at the entrance that belies the expansive wonders lying beneath the surface.

The site includes features such as an underground lake, a Ferris wheel, mini-golf, and other recreational activities. Additionally, it houses a museum, health facilities for salt therapy, and spaces for cultural events.

The sheer size and scope of Salina Turda make it a unique and fascinating destination. It invites exploration and discovery in Romania’s enchanting subterranean depths.

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The Salt Mine’s Evolution

Over the years, Salina Turda underwent several transformations.

The modernization of mining techniques and equipment eventually led to the closure of the mine in 1932.

However, the site was repurposed during World War II to serve as a shelter, and after the war, it resumed its function as a salt mine.

In 1992, Salina Turda ceased its mining operations for good, marking the beginning of its transition into an open public facility.

Consequently, authorities repurposed the mine’s infrastructure to accommodate various attractions, creating an underground amusement park unlike any other.

Popular Attractions

Salina Turda is built within the confines of an old salt mine. The site, once a centuries-old salt mine, ceased commercial activities in the 20th century.

Recognizing its historical and geological importance, efforts repurposed it into modern entertainment as an underground amusement park.

Salina Turda encompasses several underground mines and chambers. These include Losif Mine, Crivac Room, Terezia Mine, Rudolf Mine, and Gizela Mine.

Explore salt-carved balconies next to the Franz Josef Gallery in Losif Mine, featuring a conical chamber measuring 367 ft deep and 220 ft wide, renowned for its powerful echo, earning it the name “Echoes Room.”

Salt-carved balconies refer to balconies or platforms that have been carved out of the salt rock walls within the mine. Salt extraction carves passageways and chambers, leaving distinctive features like balconies.

Then, discover the main attraction in Crivac Room. The crivac, installed in 1881 in the octagonal room, serves as a unique historical artifact within the salt mines.

The winch, also known as “crivac” or “gepel,” is a historic piece of equipment that served as rudimentary machinery for lifting salt rocks to the surface during the salt mining operations.

This winch replaced a smaller one from 1864, remaining in its original location.

Next, Terezia Mine features a bell-shaped underground area measuring 300 feet in height and 285 feet in diameter. The mine features a giant bell with stalactites, salt formations, and an underground lake covering 80%.

Descend into Rudolf Mine, where salt mining ceased, measuring 138 ft deep, 160 ft wide, and 260 ft long. Explore 13 marked floors, noting opening years, viewing salt stalactites on the northwestern ceiling with panoramic elevator.

The Gizela Mine is now functioning as a spa treatment room emitting natural aerosols. The geological reserve is off-limits to tourists, featuring efflorescence and stalactites formed by water infiltrations.

Lastly, the Crystal Hall is partially covered by a lake containing salt crystals.

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Historical of Salt Extraction in Salina Turda

Salt extraction in this area dates back to ancient times.

Furthermore, from the Middle Ages, around 1075 when the mine was first mentioned, until the early 20th century (1932), the mine consistently produced table salt.

The initial explicit documentation of a salt mine in Turda, issued by the Hungarian chancellery, dates back to May 1, 1271.

Moreover, historical records from the 13th and 14th centuries describe the organization of salines in the Băile Sărate microdepression and the southeastern slope of the Valea Sărată.

Additionally, operating rooms were strategically placed at the locations of current salt lakes.

In the 17th century, the first salt mining operations commenced on the north-western slope of Valea Valea Sărată, evidenced by shafts in the dome of the Terezia room.

Soon after, the Sfântul Anton mine opened, sustaining mining activities until the first half of the 20th century.