Crystal hike: The wealth-bringing Halltal Salt crystal
Justus von Liebig was right when he said: Human beings and many other living things could not live without salt.
The wealth-bringing Halltal Salt crystal
The fine buildings in Hall's Old Town testify to the settlement's prosperous past. The Salt crystal transformed Hall into the north Tyrol's main commercial centre in the Middle Ages – and also gave the town its name.
The first mention of a settlement here was found in documents dated 1256.The name derives from the Middle High German word "hal", meaning a salt mine or source of salt. A document from 1316 mentions the town "Hall im Inntal", but from the 19th century it was generally known as "Hall in Tirol". Between 1938 and 1974 the town's name was changed to "Solbad Hall", a reference to its one-time popularity as a spa town.
At the start of the 13th century, the salt mine was the principal source of the town's prosperity. The brine was collected in the Halltal Valley, passed through a wooden pipeline to the "Sudhaus" or salt works boiler house by the Inn, where it was converted into salt.
Hall's salt was exported mainly to the Rhine area, to Switzerland and the Black Forest. In 1967, the salt production was stopped because it was found to be no longer viable.
The Historic Salt Trail in the Halltal Valley
Hike along the salt trail and follow the tracks of salt mining from Maximilian’s Fountain to the ‘Herrenhaus’ (Officers Headquarters), where you can venture into one of the main eight shafts which were cut into the mountain from 1272 to 1808.