Of all the things Austria is famous for, very few people know that its initial wealth came from the mining of salt. What started out historically for the country as economic gold is now still booming as a tourist attraction.
The Salzwelten salt mines distinctively refer to three famous salt mines – Hallein, Hallstatt and Altaussee.
Today I will for a journey into the famous Hallstatt Salt Mine.
Hallstatt Salt Mine
While Hallstatt, or Salzwelten Salt Mines, is famous for being the oldest salt mine in the world, Hallein is the first mine that allowed tourism.
Unlike these mines, Altaussee is still active – making it the oldest functional salt mine in Austria. These three collectively form the core of Austria’s salt mines.
Watch our Video of Our Hallstatt Salt Mine Tour
Below is a quick video to give you some insight into what you will see on your tour through the Hallstatt salt mines.
Where is Hallstatt Salt Mine?
Hallstatt Salt Mine is located 350 meters above the rooftops of Hallstatt in the region of Salzkammergut Austria.
The town of Hallstatt is located approximately 3.5 hours West of Vienna, or 1 and 15 minutes drive South-East from Salzburg (it is one of the best Salzburg day trips – so perfect for those basing themselves there).
Once you make your way into the town of Hallstatt, make your way to Salzbergstraße 21 where you will find a large paid secured car park. The entrance to the funicular is only a super short walk away from the parking area.
How to get to Hallstatt Salt Mines
From breathtaking open views to captivating long tunnels, Salzwelten Hallstatt Austria has got it all. To reach the mines, there are two routes:
1. You can take the Salzberg funicular up to around 838 metres above sea level and then use a panorama lift to reach the top.
From here, it’s a short walk through picturesque scenery uphill to the mines.
2. If you’re a seeker of adventure, there’s a path that the old miners used to take up to the mines. It’ll roughly be a one hour hike to the Skywalk and from there a further 5-10 minute walk to the entrance of the mines.
Hallstatt Salt Mine Price
You can either book your tickets online, grab them as a combo ticket at the funicular or get them at the counter when you reach the mines.
- Adult: one-way is € 9 and two-way is € 16
- Child: € 4.50 and € 8 respectively
Salt Mine Tour Prices:
- Adult: € 22
- Child: € 11
Combo Tickets for the Funicular and Salt Mine Tour:
Adults: € 30
Child: € 15
Other family tour options are available and the detailed list can be found here.
The Hallstatt salt mine price includes extra perks like the tours of an age-old burial site, the Heritage Skywalk tour, two museums, a hike to the High Valley and much more.
What to expect from the visit
As the mine is underground, the temperature is constantly low – around 8 degrees Celsius, so it’s advised to use sturdy footwear and wear warm, comfortable clothes.
They will also give you special overalls to pop on over your clothes as well.
It is also important to note that many of the tunnels and walking area in the mind are pretty small and narrow. So if you are claustrophobic you might want to consider whether this is the right activity for you.
The guided tour lasts for around 70 minutes and is available at half-hour intervals. The total visit time including the train ride will approximately be 2.5 hours and a train will take you through the mine and back out.
5 Main Attractions In & Around the Hallstatt Mines
Checking out the mines was so much fun and we loved it! Here are 5 things to do in Hallstatt Salt Mines, Salzwelten Austria:
1. Heritage Skywalk
Coming to the attractions that Hallstatt offers, first on the list is the Heritage Skywalk. Located 360 meters above the village, the viewing platform is bound to mesmerize you in ways you can never imagine.
2. Rudolfsturm Tower
The Rudolfsturm Tower was built way back in the 13th century with an aim of protecting the salt mine. Accessible from the skywalk platform, it’s now an open-air restaurant where you can devour delicious food while staring into an abyss of wonder.
3. Hallstatt High Valley
The Hallstatt High Valley is essentially an ancient grave site where people were buried with valuable goods. It’s now an archaeological excavation site – an attempt to understand the civilization that used to exist here and their mining efforts. Guided tours are available that’ll walk you through the valley.
4. Bronze Age Cinema
Located 400 metres below the ground, the latest attraction of the Salt mines is the Bronze age cinema.
A fictional story centered around the oldest wooden staircase discovered in the mines, it focuses on the life of the miners back in the day.
5. Prehistoric Expedition
From May-September, you can also sign up for a prehistoric expedition. It’s a special tour that will take you to deeper parts of the mines that aren’t included in the normal tour. It’s a 4-hour long adventure tour that requires you to be physically fit as they take you through time itself.
All in all, a Hallstatt Austria Salt Mine tour is an experience that you should take back home.
We hope you decide to explore the mysterious realms of the white gold past for yourself and share your stories with us one day.
Austria is one of the best places for kids in Europe and our kids loved our Hallstatt Salt Mine tour and I know that you will love it too!
Over to you:
- Which of the 5 main attractions at Salt Mine Hallstatt sparked your interest the most?
- Have you already been to the mines before?
Please share your stories with us in the comment section below.
Thanks to Dachstein-Salzkammergut for organizing and sponsoring our Hallstatt Salt Mine Tour tickets.