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The Norwegian Mining Museum has comprehensive and diverse collections that explore and chronicle the development of mining througout the 335 years that the silver mines in Kongsberg were in operation. The museum’s main attraction is its silver collection which is the largest collection of native silver anywhere in the world.
At the Norwegian Mining Museum, you can:
- Learn more about Kongsberg industrial history, from the development of Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk (the Kongsberg arms factory) to the growth of its high-tech companies of today.
- Gain historical insight into the Norwegian coin production, as well as medals from the great Nordic War to the Nobel Peace Prize. The first coins produced in Norway were made at the mint at Akershus Fortress in 1628, using silver from the silver mines. In 1686, coin production was moved to Kongsberg, where it remains today. These coins still carry a crossed hammer and chisel - the international symbol of mining.
- Take a trip through the golden age of Norwegian ski jumping from 1924 to 1952, an era dominated by the “Kongsberg-jumpers”, including brothers Sigmund, Asbjørn, and Birger Ruud as the local champions. Here, visitors will find everything from silver cups from local competitions to Olympic medals.
Tour the silver mines
Tour the silver mines. Join a train ride that takes you 342 meters below the surface and 2.3 kilometers into the mountain. Inside the King’s mine, there is a guided tour. The temperature in the mine is 6°C, so you must dress warmly.
Activities for children
Close to the entrance of the Silver mines, you will encounter activity grounds where children can interactively learn about and try the tasks of a traditional miner. You can make your own coin, just as they did in Kongsberg three hundred years ago. With a hammer and chisel, you can “excavate” minerals that are then yours to keep. You can also “wash out” silver. The area around the mines also has a lot to offer families, including a popular spot for swimming and a museum shop in the Sakkerhusene. Bring picnic basket and enjoy your lunch in beautiful surroundings.
The restaurant Sakkerhuskroa is located at the Sakkerhusene (traditional housing of the miners during the work week). These magnificent buildings were built by architect Georg Andreas Bull between 1867 and 1874. Today, the Sakkerhusene are used for meetings, conferences and dinners. In Sakkerhuskroa you can enjoy dinner and lunch, inside the building or outside in the garden.
The museum shops boast a large selection of souvenirs, minerals, books, literature about mining, gems, arts and crafts, jewelry, and other beautiful gifts.