"Zipaquira - The Salt Cathedral" Top 5 Page for this destination Zipaquirá by sjvessey

Zipaquirá Travel Guide: 58 reviews and 173 photos

A drive of an hour or so out of Bogota brings you to Zipaquira, and the Salt Cathedral. Trust me, you will never have seen anything like it in your life.

Historically, mining in Colombia meant one of two things - emeralds or salt. The salt mine at Zipaquira has been converted into an enormous, dimly-lit underground cathedral, the entire thing blasted out of rock and salt deposits with explosive. If you run your fingers over the wall and lick them, you can taste the salt for yourself. The cathedral is actually still growing as more salt is excavated, and additional caverns are created.

Although this is a working cathedral with regular mass, it's also a major tourist attraction. You can't wander round by yourself - you must join a guided tour, some of which are even in English - but believe me, it's so dark inside that you'll be glad you're with someone who knows where they're going. Plan to spend 2 or 3 hours here, at least.

Be advised, this isn't a place to come if you're afraid of the dark, because in places it's pretty black.

After the tour, be sure to wander around outside. With a bit of searching, towards the bottom of the car park, you'll find a kind of craft shop selling locally-made craft items - crucifixes made of salt, Colombian-style sombreros, and so forth. An ideal place for souvenir shopping. Those hats come in pretty handy if you're heading off to the coast later in the week.

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  • In a nutshell:A completely unique experience
  • Last visit to Zipaquirá: Mar 2003
  • Intro Updated Jun 18, 2004
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Reviews (12)

Comments (2)

  • Trekki's Profile Photo
    Sep 10, 2005 at 9:48 AM

    Great page you have here on the Salt Cathedral, Simon !! Thanks for sharing !

  • garridogal's Profile Photo
    Jul 10, 2005 at 6:31 AM

    I went to Zipaquira when I was a little girl. (My mother's Colombian.) I remember finding a small salt rock and keeping it for years. That Cathedral was amazing!



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