Relaxation and children’s activities don’t usually go hand in hand. This summer, we’ve enjoyed our fair share of adventure at arcades, trampoline parks, and all the indoor plays spaces that Fairfield County has to offer. But sometimes you just need to chill. As the seasons change and we head back to school, we're all feeling the need for a little R&R in a salt cave. Yup, a salt cave.
I have been hearing a lot about some local salt caves lately that had children’s hours - and I was intrigued! Salt Therapy- or Halotherapy- claims to help alleviate a myriad of symptoms associated with conditions such as asthma and arthritis (to name a few). I should note that a simple Google search will give you a whole range of opinions on the effectiveness of halotherapy. Since no one seems to say it’s “bad” for you, I decided to give it a try. I scheduled a 45 minute children’s session at the Salt Caves of Darien.
I took my 6 year old daughter and her 8 year old friend along to experience our inaugural salt cave visit. “Mom. I thought we were going caving." Much to the girls’ disappointment, the Salt Cave of Darien is located in a rather unassuming strip mall. Unfortunately for her, there is no spelunking here. No matter - that frown was soon turned upside down by what we were about to experience.
The website recommended that we wear comfy clothes and mandatory white socks for our caving experience. We were in a small group of about 5 kids and their caregivers. All of us were newbies and no one quite knew what to expect - or if our kids were going to be able to entertain themselves for a whole 45 minutes trapped in a salt cave.
We walked to to a small “cave like” room that was created with 100% authentic Himalayan Pink Salt. The 84 minerals and nutrients it contains makes it the purest salt for inhalation. The walls were created with tons of large salt crystals that glow a beautiful shade of pink. The floor was covered with about 6 inches of beautiful pink salt crystals that were begging to be touched and played with, and when we looked up there was a beautiful “starry sky” created with lights. A soothing salt brine cascade adorns the back wall of the cave.
Dig into the salt crystals.
Thankfully, all children’s sessions allow the kids to play in the salt for the “tactile sensation while they breathe in the healthy salt” and have zero expectations of quiet. My daughter immediately jumped into a pile and started making “salt angels” on the floor. Her friend made a beeline for the zero gravity relaxation chairs with snuggly blankets. Everyone seemed to make good use out of the pile of sand toys in the middle of the room and enjoyed the Kidz Bop playing in the background. The soft pink glow seemed to soothe our tiny savage spirits - and before we knew it our 45 minutes were up!
Everyone loved playing in the salt.
My daughter is currently obsessed with gems and minerals, and really enjoyed playing in the salt crystals. “It was super fun AND it felt good on my bug bites. Plus, the air TASTED like SALT!” She isn’t wrong! Five kids playing in mountains of salt crystals certainly stirs things up a little!
Relax and breath in the salty air.
Currently, there are three salt caves located in Fairfield County. Aside from the Salt Cave of Darien, there is also Saltana Cave in Ridgefield, and Newtown Salt Spa, which all offers children’s sessions as well as other specialized activities like yoga, stretching, and mediation.
All photos courtesy of Ally Noel