The cathedrals are among the main tourist attractions in many cities in Spain and Europe, but we can also find cathedrals that draw a lot of attention in other areas of the planet. Yes, it may not be Romanesque or Gothic buildings and they were not built during the Middle Ages, but many of them also have a special charm. It is the case of the salt Cathedral Zipaquirá, one of the most visited places in Colombia.
As we will tell you in more detail below, the surprising thing about this religious enclave is that it is 180 meters below Earth. Yes! Yes! As you are reading it! Would you like to discover this beautiful and surprising cathedral in more depth? Well then, don't miss anything we tell you below!
It is not a real cathedral
As we were saying, today we want to tell you about the Salt Cathedral, an impressive temple built inside the salt mines of Zipaquirá, in the Colombian department of Cundinamarca, two and a half hours from Bogotá. Of course, despite the name, it is not a true cathedral temple, since it is not the seat of any prelate. Still, it is one of the most famous Catholic shrines in the country.
The history of the Salt Cathedral
The origin of the Salt Cathedral dates back to the beginning of the XIX century, when the construction of the pits began in Zipaquirá. However, it was not until August 1953 when the first cathedral was inaugurated, which began to be built three years earlier so that the workers could worship their saints. It was in the old galleries dug by the Muisca two centuries before. Of course, the current cathedral did not begin to be built until 1991, 60 meters below the old construction, based on the project of the architect Roswell Garavito Pearl, who won the competition opened by the Instituto de Fomento Industrial, the Salinas Concession and the Society of Architects. The definitive cathedral was inaugurated in 1995.
An impressive art collection
If you have the opportunity to visit the Salt Cathedral you will be able to enjoy a spectacular artistic collection composed mainly of sculptures of salt and marble. Of course, the construction itself is already worth seeing, with stunning interior lighting and surprising proportions. In fact, it is one of the greatest architectural and artistic achievements in Colombia. Touring it will take you around an hour, in which it is advisable to wear a comfortable shoe and keep warm.
It is important to note that the Salt Cathedral is part of the Parque de la Sal cultural complex, a cultural space dedicated to geology, mining and natural resources. With an area of 32 hectares, the park interests both lovers of ecotourism, lovers of geological sciences and religious tourists. And it is home to, in addition to the cathedral, the Forest Area, the Reservoir, the MINE, the Saline Dome and the square where there is a cross 4.20 meters high. The Brine Museum deserves a special mention, which was built in tanks that are no longer in use. Here, visitors can learn more about the exploitation of salt, geological studies and the history and construction of the Salt Cathedral. Below we leave you with our Gallery, where we show you a lot of images of this wonder built by man. Do not miss it!
Visiting the Salt Cathedral in Zipaquira – Traveling Colombia (September 2020)
- cathedrals, religious