The Only Subterranean Cathedral in the World is OK We Guess ​

There are two cool things to see in the Salt Cathedral in Zipaquirá: the reflecting pond and the chandeliers made of salt. It was an overpriced and underwhelming unofficial church in an old salt mine, and they played Ave Maria on loop, which got old around the 17th time. But I guess the pictures came out okay.

We found our way to this touristy spot using public transit in true Latin American style, by responding to a person yelling “Zipa Zipa” and climbing aboard their less-than-safe-looking bus. Then we spent an hour watching the city slowly fade into sleepy countryside.

Once we reached the heart of Zipaquirá, we traveled on foot to the Cathedral through the pedestrian walkway and town square.


Zipa square was quaint, with pigeons, couples holding hands, and grandfathers shooting the breeze on benches.



Outside the cathedral, Zipa had other touristy things, like zip lines and an impressive climbing wall with no actual routes that we could see.


They could use a setter.

The Cathedral has a walkway with stations of the cross and 4 large chapels, built into old mining tunnels.

Josh in the nicely lit 6th or 7th station of the cross.


Believe it or not, this is not a color-adjusted photo. There was rather spooky lighting at this station.

This was the highly saline reflecting pool that is only a few inches deep. The ripples seemed to travel very slowly, which was highly entertaining.​



There were several marble sculptures in the mine, imported from Italy and completed by an Italian artist. The style clashed with the rough work of the miners and it seemed a shame to not feature a national, but at least this one cast a nice shadow.


The artist also made this salt carving with local children. Cooler!


These chandeliers were about two meters across and were carved entirely out of salt. This was probably the most impressive thing about the cathedral.


Blurry main cathedral selfie. It was cool enough to go once… But not to revisit.