Salzbergwerk Altaussee

Salzwelten Altaussee


Useful Information

Location: Altaussee. A1 (E55) exit 234 Gmunden, follow B145 through Gmunden, Bad Ischgl, and Bad Goisern. Turn left on B145 to Altaussee, in the center turn left towards Loser and Salzbergwerk. After 2.6 km turn left and follow the road upholl for 1.6km. Signposted.
(47°39'10.30"N, 13°44'50.33"E)
Open: 28-APR to 01-JUN-2007 9, 11, 13, 15.
02-JUN to 30-JUN-2007 9-15, every hour on the hour.
01-JUL to 16-SEP-2007 9-16, every hour on the hour.
17-SEP to 28-OCT-2007 9, 11, 13, 15.
[2007]
Fee: Adults EUR 14.50, Children (7-15) EUR 8.70, Children (4-6) EUR 7.20, Family (2+1) EUR 30.30. [2007]
Classification:  Salt Mine
Light: electric.
Dimension: T=7°C.
Guided tours: L=700m, D=80min.
Photography:  
Accessibility:  
Bibliography: Gerhard Mayrhofer (1998): Die touristische Nutzung der österreichischen Salzbergwerke. Die Standorte Hallstatt, Hallein, Altaussee und Bad Ischl im Vergleich, Diplomarb. Univ. Salzburg 1998. 120 Bl. (maschinschr.)
Address: Salinen Tourismus GmbH, Salzbergstraße 21, A-4830 Hallstatt, Tel: +43-6132-200-2400, Fax: +43-6132-200-4400. E-mail: contact
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
Last update:$Date: 2015/08/30 21:51:44 $

History

 
1935chapel for Saint Barbara created by miners.
JUN-1943mine evaluated for the use as an art bunker.
1943start of relocation of art into the mine.

Geology

Below the mountain called Sandling lies a deposit of estimated 400.000 tons of salt. This is the biggest salt deposit in Austria. The solt is mined by pumping fresh water into the mountain, where it solutes the rock salt in huge chambers. When the water is saturated with salt, it is pumped to ebensee, where the salt is extracted and processed into various products.


Description

Altaussee has the biggest salt deposits of Austria, and they are mined until today. A part of the working mine was developed as a show mine and is now open to the public under the name Salzwelten Altaussee (salt worlds Altaussee). The guided tour requires a change of clothes, a hard hat and a special white salt miners dress, so you should allow two hours. The underground visit may be completed by the two hour walking trail Via Salis (road of salt), which starts at the mine entrance.

The developed parts of the mine are 700m deep inside the mountain, and visitors walk inside through 350m of rock, grey limestone, and then 350m of salt which is mostly reddish and has complex patterns of layers. A highlight is the chapel of Saint Barbara, the patron of the miners, which was built of salt from the mine and is lighted indirectly through the salt. The Schatzkammer des geronnenen Lichts (Treasure Cave of Frozen Light) shows the beauty and the special properties of salt.

The Kunstlager im Springerwerk (Art Depot Springerwerk) is the place where in 1943 artworks from many Austrian museums was stored, to protect them from Allied bombs. It was filled between 1943 and 1945 with the works of Michelangelo, Van Deyck, Dürer, Rubens or Vermeer. But at the end it became really dramatic, the Nazis tried to destroy the art during the last days of the war, so it would not be found by the enemy. They sent eight bombs into the mine, in boxed which looked like other art transport boxes, with the label Vorsicht Marmor! Nicht stürzen! (Attention Marble, do not overthrow). The miners discovered this, and under the threat of being shot they removed the bombs from the mine. With this brave act the saved important pieces of European art. A slide show presents many of the artworks which once were stored here.

There are two wooden chutes, which were used by the miners to descend to lower levels very fast. They are great fun for children, people who do not want to slide down, may use the stairs. The Schatzkammer der ungesehenen Bilder (Treasur Cave of Unseen Picures) is a huge chamber formed by solution by water. It has an diameter of 80m and contains a salt water lake. In this chambers the visitors see a multimedia and laser show.


See also


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