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EXHIBITION

Come and experience the rich history of mining.

16 years of unique underground adventure.

Underground part of museum

Under the earth awaits our poet, Anton Aškerc, who 110 years ago hauled coal in the depths and wrote:

"Deeper and deeper, down into the abyss

Are you afraid of the strange underground ride?

Is it not like going down a well, my brother?"

And then you will be taken around the underground world of the Coal Mining Museum of Slovenia, among the miners who tore the black gold from the bosom of the earth, and sent it ton after ton out into the daylight. From those times to the present day, the total mining production amounts to 220 million tons.

Aškerc will also inform you of the hard work of the miners in the steamy and suffocating atmosphere around 12 metre high piles of coal.

"It is sultry and difficult to breathe.

Heat rises... Are we nearing hell?"

You will be guided along old mine workings where miners had to look out for many dangers, such as cave ins of thick layers of lignite and the dangerous explosive methane. You will hear the sad whine of the siren that sounded in January and February 1893 when first 11 then 17 miners lost their lives in two successive methane explosions.

The story is presented with sets and puppets of miners in their typical positions at work and rest. The sets are brought to life by the means of modern audio and video equipment. Before entering the modern part of the museum, you can refresh yourself with a miner's lunch in a canteen that is the lowest in Slovenia and probably in Europe as well.

In the second part, your journey will take you through mechanised underground roadways dating from the more recent decades of the Velenje Coal Mine's development. With the introduction of protective supports and excavation machinery that cuts through lignite layers as if they were butter, work was modernised to such an extent that Velenje coal mine became famous as one of the safest and most modern underground coal mine in Europe, and in the world as well. At the end of your tour, you will be invited to the ride on the underground railway.