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Along the 1.6-kilometre mine walk around the Great Pit, visitors experience many exciting views of the area and the historic World Heritage town of Falun.
© Per Eriksson

Mining Area of the Great Copper Mountain in Falun, Sweden

Falun, Sweden
A tour of the Falun mine is a trip through history - it was once one of the world’s most important mining areas. The mine dates back over 1,000 years and at its peak in the 17th century, it accounted for 70% of the western world’s copper production. As the major producer of copper, Sweden exerted a strong influence on the technological, economic, social, and political development of Europe.

Falun Mine was the world’s major producer of copper in the 17th century and had a large influence on mining technology across the globe. Many of Europe’s greatest buildings, including the Palace of Versailles, were roofed with Falun copper. The mine also helped Sweden become an economic powerhouse in the region.

At its peak, 1,000 Swedish workers worked below the surface in the mines. At the end of the day, they would light fires which would burn overnight and help the ore break loose in the morning. It meant the deep tunnels were usually hot and dirty, creating a challenging environment for workers. They would move forward about one metre each month.

The Falun Mine is one of Sweden's most important industrial monuments and you can spend a whole day exploring the site. Descending into the depths of its underground tunnels with your orange raincoat and helmet, you will hear captivating stories and legends of the hardships and heroes of the mine’s history. On the surface, the enormous ‘Great Pit’ dominates the landscape, which was caused by a cave-in on Midsummer’s Eve in 1687, fortunately when all the miners were off enjoying the festivities. The 1.6km-long trail around the Great Pit is a popular spot for walking and learning more about the site’s history. The mine’s museum is an interactive source of information and science which caters well for children. And while it is a mining site, you can still experience stylish Scandinavian design at the site’s newly renovated restaurant , ‘fika’ café and gift store. The old miners’ quarters are located nearby, where you can explore beautiful neighbourhoods of wooden houses painted in Falun red.

A Walk Deep into History

Come along on an adventure down into the Falun Mine. Walk through the winding passages and experience the mighty chambers—every corner is loaded with the history of a country and a continent.

This log house, called the fire hut, is a copy of a 18th century building and serves as the entrance to the underground mine. – © Anna Kompanieitseva / Shutterstock
This log house, called the fire hut, is a copy of a 18th century building and serves as the entrance to the underground mine. – © Anna Kompanieitseva / Shutterstock

There is something in Falun for everyone. Children and adults can spend days experiencing one of Europe's most crucial periods. Preserved just as it was one thousand years ago, today the mine buzzes with action and activity. People live, work, eat, stroll, and shop in the middle of the World Heritage Site.

A World of Copper

Falun Mine and its copper were important for financing Sweden's period as a great power. In the 17th century, it was known as "the treasure and cashbox of the kingdom," and, as such, it was filled with stories and tales.

Guests will hear the fascinating story of the miner Fat Mats, whose well-preserved body was found in the mine in 1719—42 years after he had been killed by a rock fall. Another tale is about the red paint that decorates so many houses in this region exists thanks to Falun Mine. The iron ochre from the mine has been used since the 17th century and is regarded as the paint that gave Sweden its colour.

The traditional red paint is produced by the Falun Mine at the on-site factory. – © Richard Lindor
The traditional red paint is produced by the Falun Mine at the on-site factory. – © Richard Lindor

Over in the museum, visitors get elbow deep in an interactive exhibition that takes them through the site's history. They can also explore the signposted Mine Walk around the Great Pit with viewpoints across the landscape. There are several unique buildings, including the area around the Creutz shaft, which has one of Sweden's best-preserved collections of mine structures from the mid-19th century.

Heritage Abounds Above and Below the Surface

Apart from the mine, there is much more to experience at the Falun World Heritage Site, which includes the mine, the town, the master miners' landscape, flower gardens, and beautiful mansions. The well-preserved district of Elsborg with its wooden buildings makes for an attractive walk from the center of Falun to the mine. Here you can see some of Falun's oldest buildings, including the smallest miner's cottage in Falun.

The Elsborg neigborhood is where the miners once lived. – © Magnus Sjöberg
The Elsborg neigborhood is where the miners once lived. – © Magnus Sjöberg


How to Get There

If arriving by plane, Stockholm's Arlanda Airport is 200 kilometres from the city of Falun. A comfortable train ride will take you to Falun's centre. The mine is walking distance of the city's central tourist area.

A 20-minute walk through the vibrant neighbourhood of Elsborg, with its small, red woodenhouses, will take you to Falun Mine. Public transport is limited.

You also have the opportunity to rent a car and drive from the airport for approximately 2.5 hours directly to Falun Mine.

When to Visit

Falun Mine is open all year. The peak tourist season runs between June and September. The average temperature in July is 18 degrees Celsius and in January -6 degrees Celsius. A visit in the mine will take you 67 metres below ground level. The temperature in the mine is always 5 degrees Celsius, no matter what time of year.

In the summer, you can enjoy great music events as well as the festivals and folklore in Dalarna. Winter offers opportunities to combine a visit with skiing and skating. And, don't miss the chance to visit Santa. He lives in Mora, only an hour drive away.

How to Visit

Since there is so much to see and explore in Falun and its surroundings, we recommend car rental. This makes it possible to drive to some of the local activities and sites, such as gardens, food producers, festivals, and museums.

The tourism information office, in Falun centre, can offer personalised advice about itineraries that include the region's nature, culture, and history. Also, Falun Mine's professional staff is always ready to help.

Visit

Mining Area of the Great Copper Mountain in Falun, Sweden

Hours

VISITOR CENTER:

1st of October to 30th of April
Monday: closed
Tuesday – Friday:
11:00 – 16:00
Saturday – Sunday:
10:00 – 15:00

1st of May to 15th of June
Monday – Friday:
10:00 – 16:00
Saturday – Sunday:
10:00 – 15:00

16th of June to 19th of August
Monday – Sunday:
9:30 – 17:30

20th of August to 30th of September
Monday – Friday:
10:00 – 16:00
Saturday – Sunday:
10:00 – 15:00

MINE MUSEUM:

1st of October to 30th of April
Monday – Friday: Closed
Saturday – Sunday:
10:00 – 15:00

1st of May to 15th of June
Monday - Sunday:
10:00 - 15:00

16th of June to 19th of August
Monday - Sunday:
10:00 - 17:30

20 of August to 30th of September
Monday – Friday:
10:00 – 16:00
Saturday – Sunday:
10:00 – 15:00

Pricing

Guided Tours in the mine take one hour and are available year around, visit our website for information and booking at FaluGruva.se


1st of May to 30th of September

Guided tour under ground (includes activities above ground):
SEK230 adults
SEK200 students/seniors
SEK100 children (age 3–15 years)
SEK600 families (2 adults + 2 children)

Above ground only:
SEK110 adults
SEK60 children (age 3–15 years)
SEK300 families (2 adults + 2 children)


1st of October to 1st of May

Under ground (includes above ground):
SEK210 adults
SEK190 students/seniors
SEK80 children (age 3–15 years)
SEK530 families (2 adults + 2 children)

Above ground only:
SEK80 adults
SEK40 children (age 3-15 years)
SEK210 families (2 adults + 2 children)