Turda is the second largest city in Cluj province in northern Romania and has for many centuries been famed for its salt mines. Many of its workings are exceptionally well-preserved. Some were opened for tourists in 1992, and a substantial investment in 2010 included a new entrance and interpretation centre. Saline lakes, the result of subsidence caused by salt mining, are a feature of the landscape of the Turda area, and are used for bathing and other leisure activities, and there are spa facilities in the town.
The first documentary evidence for salt mining at Turda dates from 1271. The mines were extensively worked in the sixteenth century. Their outstanding feature is the Franz Joseph Gallery, built from 1853 to facilitate the movement of salt from the workings to the surface. By 1900 the stone-lined passage extended for more than 1000 m. The gallery was used as a cheese store between 1948 and 1992, when it was no longer needed for transporting salt. The Franz Joseph Gallery now imaginatively lit with various forms of multi-media interpretation, forms the centrepiece of the present underground displays. Visitors can also see the Rudolf mine, 42 m deep, 50 m wide and 80 m long, which was the last to be worked in Turda. Access was by 172 steps but visitors can now enter it by an elevator. The main feature of the Terezia Mine where work stopped in the 1880s is an underground lake, in parts 8 m deep, with an island created by dumping salt waste. The Room of Crystals can be seen but not entered by visitors. It is notable for its remarkable display of stalactites. The Gizela Mine has been adapted as a spa.