Exploring different underground caves can be an exciting and unusual experience for any person as they are surely an amazing scenery with plenty of underground natural wonders. Especially if you are an adventurer then you can plan to travel to various caves which will not only make your jaw drop but will also let you immerse in their history about their uses by the early man. Get into the deeper and darker side of the world by entering these caves which has floorings and which glow through rays of sunlight in day time whereas artificial lightnings make it look awe aspiring at night. We have many amazing and awesome caves present across the world but the top 10 caves which must be explored are listed below:
10. EISRIESENWELT ICE CAVE-AUSTRIA
Extending to more than 42 km of tunnels and chambers, the Eisriesenwelt is a natural limestone ice cave situated in Austria inside the Hochkogel mountain, Tennengebirge section of the Alps making it one of the largest ice cave in the world. The entrance of the cave within 1 kilometre is covered in ice and the rest of is made of limestone. Inside, there is a large room called Poselt hall having a stalagmite called Poselt Tower followed by cross on the cave wall from where one can see the Great Ice Embankment. One of the largest room in the cave is Mork Cathedral and lastly it consists of the Ice Palace which is 400 meters underground the cave.
9. JIETTA GROTTO CAVE-LEBANON
Situated in the Nahr-al-Kalb valley within the locality of Jieta, Lebanon, the Jieta Grotto is a system of two separate, but interconnected karstic limestone caves spanning an overall length of nearly 9 kilometres. The upper galleries that have been discovered in 1958 form the world’s largest stalactite consisting of series of chambers have been accommodated with an access tunnel along with safe access of walkways for the tourists so that the natural landscape is not affected. The Jietta Grotto has been termed as the finalist in the New 7 Wonders of Nature.
8. PUERTO PRINCESA UNDERGROUND RIVER NATIONAL PARK-PHILLIPINES
This National Park is located north of city centre of Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Phillipines. The river also known as St. Paul Underground River is situated in the Saint Paul Mountain Range on the Northern Coat of Phillipines Island. It was discovered in 2010, that the underground river consisted of a second floor with small waterfalls inside the cave. Rock formations such as stalactites and stalagmites, cave dome above the underground river, deep water hole in the river, another deep cave and many more formations were later discovered. The cave also includes a 360 meter long Italian chamber which is one of the largest cave rooms in the world. UNESCO has referred this National Park as a World Heritage Site.
7. MULU CAVES-MALAYSIA
These caves are a part of Mulu National Park in Borneo of Northern Malaysia which cover around 125 miles. You will get to see wide variety of incredible caves and beautiful limestone and karst formation while passing through the park. According to the Forest Department, Mulu Caves has the largest passage with one of the largest cave chamber i.e. Sarawak Chamber up to 230 feet high and is the largest in the whole of South-East Asia.
6. MAMMOTH CAVES-U.S
One of the oldest as well as well-known cave present in the U.S. National Park in Central Kentucky is the longest cave system in the world with 365 miles of subterranean passageways. The most eye attracting features of the Mammoth caves include a giant sinkhole named Cedar Sink followed with unanimous systems of stalagmites and stalactites that formed various calcite formations along with self-described features like the Grand Avenue, Frozen Niagara and Fat Man’s Misery. It was turned in to a national park in 1941 only after it got discovered by American settlers in the late 18th century.
5. REED FLUTE CAVE-CHINA
A popular destination in China the Reed Flute cave derived its name from the reeds growing inside the cave, useful in making flutes. This Reed Flute consists of dozens of miraculous rock and mineral formations, stone pillars as well as more than 70 inscriptions written in ink. The cave looks awe aspiring because of the unsurpassed shapes of 100’s of stalactites and stalagmites formations. But the main attraction of this natural limestone cave is the multi-coloured lighting that gets reflected through a calm surface of an underground pond.
4. SKOCJAN CAVES-SLOVENIA
Considered to be one of the most important caves in the world, Scokjan cave is a cave system in Slovenia including the highest cave hall in whole of Europe, a massive underground gorge, waterfalls along with a bridge over the gorge. The sinking Reka River is the best feature of the cave that goes underground 21 miles whereas the cave itself is just 2 miles long. Thus, both forms the world’s longest karst underground wetlands. Due to the presence of stalgamite and stalactite formations, the Skocjan cave represents the most significant underground phenomena in both Slovenia and Karst region. According to the UNESCO in 1986, it has been listed as natural and cultural World Heritage Site.
3. WAITOMO GLOWWORM CAVE-NEW ZEALAND
Derived the name from its natural inhabitants, the Waitomo Glow-worm cave is located in the Waikato Region of New Zealand’s North Island. The Glow-worm cave is a part of other Waitomo cave systems which include Ruakuri Cave and Aranui Cave being the home to tiny glow-worms called Arachnocampa Luminosa that radiate luminescent light through their hanging larvas. These glow-worms are around the size of a mosquito which are exclusively found only in New Zealand whose blue light emission is due to the chemical reaction of a capsule that is present in their tail. If you stand under the thousand hanging lighted larvas, it itself gives you the feel of standing under a sky full of stars. Since the Waitomo Glow-worm cave was formed around 30 million years ago under the ocean, it was made from fossilized limestones. The best key features of the cave are the the ornate cave decorations, limestone shaft named Tomo and the Cathedral Cavern with awesome acoustics.
2. CALRSBAD CAVERNS-NEW MEXICO
It is a National Park located in Guadalupe mountains near Carlsbad, New Mexico. Considered to be the most spectacular classic natural cave, the Carlsbad Caverns includes the huge natural echoing limestone Big Room i.e. the 7th largest cave chamber in the world and the 3rd largest chamber in North America. You even come across some awesome view of water forces with array of stalactite and travertine formations that are seen with several accessible trials. Some of the other magnificent chambers to explore are the Balloon Ballroom, King’s Palace, Chocolate High and lastly the view of hundreds of bats can’t be missed. Unlike other caves, the Carlsbad cave was carved out by strong sulphuric acid formed due to close proximity of oil and gas deposits.
1.CAVE OF CRYSTALS-MEXICO
This amazing cave is also known by the name Giant Crystal Cave which is situated 300 meters below the surface of working Naica Mine of Chihuahua, Mexico. Built in a horseshoe-shaped cavity of limestone rock its main chamber consists of world’s gigantic selenite crystals with pure clarity almost being transparent. They appear to be so large due to the extremely high temperature present inside the cave with the presence of 90 to 99% of humidity. These crystals were formed millions of years ago due to the magma that heated the underground water which dissolved all the rich minerals and later cooled down to form these. Since the conditions are highly inhospitable people can only explore the cave till 10 minutes, the hot humid temperature makes it extremely difficult to explore beyond that.