Khewra city famous for having world’s second largest salt mines Khewra Salt Mines is located in District Jhelum of province Punjab, Pakistan. The city is situated about 200 kilometres from Islamabad and 245 kilometres from the city of Lahore.
Khewra Salt Mines are located 945 feet above sea level. The mountains containing Khewra Salt Mines are part of mineral-rich mountain range called Salt Range. Total length of Salt Range is 300 kilometres , extending from Beganwala near River Jhelum to Kalabagh near River Sindh. Width of Salt Range varies between 8 kilometres to 30 kilometres.
Khewra Salt Mine is a very popular tourist attraction with nearly 250,000 visitors each year. There are several artistic carvings of salt stones placed in different areas of Khewra Salt Mines for amusement of tourists. There is an electric train available to take visitors inside the mine. It is told that engine of this train belongs to 1930. Male and female guides are available to guide tourists about the Khewra Salt Mines.
There are several small ponds of thick salty water in different areas of mine. When light is projected on the liquid in these pools it is refracts and produces different colors that look very beautiful. Most popular carvings of salt stone among tourists are a replica of Minar-e-Pakistan made with colorful salt bricks, a model of the Great Wall of China, a statue of national poet Allama Muhammad Iqbal, a beautiful mosque made up of colorful bricks of salt stone, a model of Sheesh Mahal made up of pink salt bricks, and a model of Mall Road of Murree.
There is cafeteria for visitors that meet immediate refreshment needs. There are also two souvenir shops offering decoration pieces and lamps made up of salt stones of Khewra Salt Mines. Inside the mine is a tunnel named crystal valley by tourists. It is a tunnel with shining salt crystal in the roof and walls illuminated by colourful lights. There are some rooms inside the Khewra Salt Mines that were mined during the Mughal times.
History of Khewra Salt Mines:
|326 BC||Salt was discovered by the licking of out crop salt by the horses of Alexander The Great’s army who was here to fight a battle against Raja Porus.|
|1500 AD||ASP Khan local leader of Khewra informed Akbar The Great about existence of salt deposit in Khewra. Mining was initiated by the orders of King Akbar.|
|1809||Sikhs taken over the Khewra Salt Mines from Mughals.|
|1849||British ruler taken over the salt mines.|
|1853||Aspiring of drinkable water discovered and conveyed to Khewra through a wooden tunnel.|
|1856||Motorable road was laid down between Khewra and P.D. Khan.|
|1872||Dr. Warth first Chief Mining Engineer surveyed whole mines and introduced scientific mining system.He laid out main tunnel at ground level.|
|1886-87||Railway Bridge (Victoria) was constructed over the river Jhelum between the Railway Junction Malikwal and Khewra.|
|1889-90||Salt production crossed 50,000 Metric Tonnes.|
|1902||Hospital established to provide medical facilities to miners and workers of the Khewra Salt Mines.|
|1914||The production was reached 50,000 Metric Tonnes.|
|1918||Two steam engines were used in the mines for carriage of rock salt.|
|1924-25||Power House with Two Diesel Electric Generating sets, 500 HP were installed.|
|1932||Chain cutter machines were imported.|
|1933||Automatic loading plant was installed.|
|1971||Khewra Salt Mines were switched over to WPIDC.|
|1974||PDMC (Pakistan Mining Development Corporation) taken over the mines from PIDC.|
|1998||Minning tub system switched over to tractor trolley system.|
|2002||Khewra Salt Mines Tourist Resort established.|
|2003||Inauguration of Khewra Tourist Resort.|
|2005||Khewra Asthma Clinic was established.|
|2010||Renovation of Khewra Tourist Resort.|
Rock Salt Properties Khewra Salt Mines:
|Chemical Name||Sodium Chloride NaCl|
|Sulphate||Usually includes traces of Magnesium Chloride (MgCl2), Magnesium Sulphate (MgSO4), Calcium Sulphate (CaSO4), Potassium Chloride (KCl) and Magnesium Bromide (MgBr2)|
|Common Use||Seasoning agent, preservation of food and edible purpose.|
|Salt||Derived from the Latin word “Salarium” which means Salary, it served as amon in ancient Ethiopia and Tibet.|
|Chlorine Compounds||Hydrochloric Acid, Chloroform, Carbon Tetra Chloride, Bleaching Powder.|
|Sodium Compounds||Sodium Carbonate, Sodium Sulphate, Baking Soda i.e Sodium Bicarbonate.|
|Uses||Preservations for meats, Refrigeration process in Dyeing, Manufacturing of soap and glass, Salt Crystal are also used in study of infrared radiations.|
Where to stay?
- Al- Madeena Restaurant, GT road Jhelum
- Al-Bilal Hotel, GT Road near Kala Gujran.
- Makki Hotel, GT road Jhelum.
- Mehwish Hotel, adjusent GC GT road, Jhelum.
- Tulip River view Hotel, River Jhelum Bridge.
- Zeelaf Hotel and Restaurant, GTS Chowk, Kazim Kamal Road.
|Location||160km south of Islamabad|
|Leased area||3,398.53 acres 3,398.53 acres|
|Purity of salt||Average 98%|
|Shades of salt||White, Pink and Red|
|Mining method||Room and Pillar|
|Total Resources||Over one Billion|
|Production||387,747.820 tons (2013-14)|
|Sales||386,255.240 tons (2013-14)|
|Contact||Mr. Arfan Shah
Khewra salt Mines
Khewra, Distt. Jhelum