The Lucía Mine, where asphalt oozes

The Lucía Mine, where asphalt oozes

After a century of silence and darkness the Lucía Mine opens its doors to the public to offer a tourist route based on rigour, respect and sustainability, as well as being a pleasant, educational way to reveal the life of those who dedicated themselves to mining in general, and to mining natural asphalts in particular.

Visitors can explore nearly 300 metres of galleries dug out with pickaxes and shovels over fifty years of working this mining site located in the small village of Atauri, in the Montaña Alavesa region and in the heart of the Izki natural park, and discover how the natural asphalt that oozes from its walls was extracted.

The Lucía Mine was in operation between 1872 and the 1920s, and is an example of the various natural asphalt mines that were operating at that time in Montaña Alavesa. The asphalt and bitumen from the Lucía Mine, along with other mines in the region, were used for various projects ranging from the pelota court in the nearby village of Maeztu to the Madrid Stock Exchange building as well as several streets in Paris.

Today it is a place to visit, combining industrial and nature tourism, as well as geological uniqueness. In fact, it is one of the two natural asphalt mines that can be visited in the whole of Europe.

Asphalt continues to ooze from the gallery walls of the Lucía Mine thanks to its natural temperature and humidity, despite the fact that it was abandoned a hundred years ago due to the emergence of other materials that replaced natural asphalt, making the mining of these deposits no longer profitable.

Guided tours only. For information about guided tours, phone 945 40 54 24