Wieliczka Salt Mine hits tourist record
PR dla Zagranicy
The historic salt mine in Wieliczka near Kraków last year registered a record number of visitors.
The Chapel of Saint Kinga in wieliczka, Poland: photo - wikicommons
One million and 117 thousand tourists toured the site, five per cent more than in 2011.
Foreign tourists accounted for 53 per cent of visitors.
The British top the list (60. 9 thousand, 12 per cent more than in 2011), followed by Italians (42.4 thousand, an increase of 17 per cent) and Germans (38.5 thousand, an increase of 4 per cent). French, Korean, Russian, Norwegian, Spanish, American and Hungarian visitors were the remaining nations in the top ten.
Director of the Wieliczka Salt Mine, Kajetan d'Obyrn, has told the Polish Press Agency that with an annual number of visitors exceeding one million and almost 36 million visitors since the end of World War Two, Wieliczka is by far the most popular sightseeing attraction of its kind in the world.
Last year’s visitors also included almost 1,000 journalists and reporters from many countries. The mine served as location for a Bollywood production, Discovery Channel produced a programme on underground chapels and Canadian TV made a report in its series on the most bizarre restaurants.
The Wieliczka Salt Mine was founded in the middle of the 13th century. It features a 3.5-km touring route for visitors that includes historic statues and mythical figures. There are also a large chapel, an underground lake, as well as a private rehabilitation and wellness complex.
In 1978 the Wieliczka Mine was included in the original UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. (mk)