Ajkai Bányászati Múzeum

Ajka Coal Mine Museum - Alsó-Csinger Coal Museum

Useful Information

Location: Ajka, Csinger valley
Open: All year Tue-Fri 11-16, Sat-Sun 10-16.
Fee: Adults HUF 200, Children HUF 100.
Classification: MineCoal Mine
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours:  
Bibliography: Károly Kozma ed. (nY): Ajka Bányászati Múzeum - Bergbaumuseum in Ajka, (Magyar - Hungarian Deutsch - German)
Miklósné Vasi, Károly Kozma ed (nY): Ajka - Parkerdo Bányászati Múzeum, (Magyar - Hungarian Deutsch - German English Français - French)
Address: Nagy László Városi Könyvtár és Szabadido Központ (Nagy László Town Library and Leisure Center), Bányászati Múzeum, Parkerdo, 8400 Ajka, Tel: +36-88-312-946, Fax: +36-88-312-946.
Ajkai Bányászati Múzeum, Parkerdo, Szabadság tér 13, 8400 Ajka, Tel: +36-88-210-252, Fax: +36-88-210-252.
Parkerdo (Csingervölgy) / Karte, Tel: +36-88-312-836. 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.


1865 Gyula Puzdar starts to investigate the local mineral resources.
1872 mining started.
1903 Ármin Akna shaft commissioned.
14-JAN-1909 underground fire claims the lives of 55 miners.
1959 mine closed.
1965 museum opened.
1977 54-metre long show tunnel built.
1993 Jubilee Memorial House of the Bakony Power Plant Holding built.
03-SEP-2004 last coal mine in the area closed.


The so-called Ajka Basin is 8 km long and 2 km wide, located south-east of Ajka, runs from north-east to south-west. The sedimentary layers with the coal seams dip towards south-west. About a dozen faults make the situation a little more complicated.

Beneath the coal, the area around Ajka offers various mineral resources: manganese, bauxite, bentonite and lignite, basalt, clays, and gravel. The most important mineral resources were the coal and the bauxite, but both industries, coal and aluminium are now shut down. The only remaining industry is glass production which is based on the quartz sand and other minerals which are available in the area.


Mining started in the area of Ajka after Gyula Puzdar, the local squire, appointed the mining engineer Mr Hout to survey this area in 1865. A number of coal-seam outcrops were already known for a long time, and the Hungarian geologist Miksa Hantken recommended prospection in the area. After this survey, mining operations were started in 1872 in the Bocskor-dike.

The mining produced primarily for the local demand, which was not very high at first. But in the 1870s the railway line between Graz and Budapest was built, and both the construction works and later the railroad itself needed coal. So soon four principal mines operated in the coal-field: Kossuth Akna, Ármin Bánya, Jókai Bánya and Padragi Bánya. The character of the mines changed - in this order - from the shallow mine in the north-east to the deepest mine in the south-west.

The coal mining museum is located at the site of Ármin Akna (Armin Pit), which was started in 1903 with the construction of the shaft. The shaft was 128 meters deep, and 6 m by 2.5 m in section, the walls lined with wooden frame-props. It was worked by a Schlick-type duplex-piston steam winder. Soon after its opening on 14-JAN-1909 it became well known when an underground fire broke out which caused the death of 55 miners. Mining continued with no other such disaster in the further history of the mines. Finally the mine was shut down in 1959, and subsequently it was chosen as the location of a mining museum. This immediate transformation is the reason, why most of the mining equipment is found on location, it was never removed or recycled. After a renovation period of several years, the museum was opened in 1965, the centennial of the first exploration by Gyula Puzdar.

The museum is called Ajkai Bányászati Múzeum (Ajka Coal Mine Museum) or Alsó-Csingervölgy Bányászati Múzeum (Lower Csinger Valley Coal Museum). Alsó-Csinger is pronounced Ulsho-Chin-gair. It is located in the lower Csinger Valley, on a location called Parkerdo.

But the idea of the museum was not only to display memorabilia, an underground section should explain the daily work of a miner. In 1977 the museum was completed by a 54-metre long show tunnel, which was artificially built and was not an original mine tunnel. This underground exhibition displays different means of constructing tunnels and contains a variety of mining equipment. From the Medieval tools like hand augers, picks and axes, to pneumatic drills, picks, and various pumps. Much of the tunnel is lined with steel hoops with timber placed horizontally behind.

On the surface the museum has various buildings, one with an extensive exhibition with documents, photographs, maps and cross sections. There is a mineral exhibition showing the wealth of local minerals including ajkasite, a sort of petrified resin which has its type locale here. Nearby are other buildings, the old smithy, a transformer house and an engine house. The mine yard shows all the mining related equipment once in use in mines around Ajka, which was collected here. All machinery which is too big is exhibited on the large premises, surrounded by heaps of colliery wastes. This includes shaft-sinking gear, coal-cutters of different types, conveyors, underground locomotives and trucks.

But coal is not the only mineral found here. There are bauxite-resources nearby, which were exploited during the 20th century. In 1943 an aluminium plant and aluminium smelter was opened, later completed by a high-pressure foundry. However, bauxite mining and aluminium plant are closed today, like the coal mines.