Consider cave exploration for your next vacation
A cave adventure can take you anywhere in the world. Whether you’re in an ice cave, exploring underwater sinkholes, or finding the alleged entrance to the underworld, you’re definitely discovering a new world one way or the other.
Finally, the Son Doong Cave in , is the largest known cave passage in the world. Discovered in 1991, scientists are still busy exploring this giant cave. The largest area of the cave discovered so far is 650 feet wide, 500 feet high and about 5 miles long – so large it could hold an entire city street full of skyscrapers or park a 747. The first tourist group went through the cave in August 2013, but more will definitely be on the way.
Carlsbad Caverns, about 20 miles South West of Carlsbad, New Mexico contains 118 known caves underneath the Guadalupe Mountains. Cave tours vary in difficulty – some tours, like Hall of the White Giant, are strenuous and require long distance crawls and moving through tight crevices, but others, like the must-see site called the Big Room, are accessible to visitors in wheelchairs. The nearest hotel is at the entrance of the park in White’s City, but visitors who want to camp may obtain a free permit from the park Visitor Center. Aside from the cave exploration, the park offers opportunities to see its bats fly each night at dusk from May-October.
Cueva de Cristales, or Cave of Crystals, is another spectacular cave to visit in Mexico. Discovered in 2000 by miners and located below the Naica Mountain in the Chihuahuan Desert of Mexico, the Cueva de Cristales contains a number of the largest natural crystals ever found.
Near Saltzburg, Austria the Eisriesenwelt Ice Caves in Werfen are home to 30 miles of ice caves – a number of the largest in the world. Hour 5 long tours are available. be ready for a long trek to get there – and guides recommend bringing a hat and mittens, but the views are breathtaking.
In Mexico, the Yucatan peninsula’s Riviera Maya between Playa del Carmen and Tulum contains 100 underwater caves. there’s also cenotes, natural sinkholes that the Mayans believed were the entrance to the underworld. Needless to say, this vacation wonderland is very popular with cave divers. since there are so many caves, experienced cave divers in Mexico recommend hiring a professional guide or staying in a resort that offers guided tours for cave divers. The reward is a number of the clearest water in the world, incredible visibility and perhaps visiting the underworld.
Yearning to try something new and adventurous on your next vacation? Have no fears of enclosed spaces? Cave exploration, or spelunking, will be the vacation for you. Below are a few destinations and tips for a cave vacation to remember.
Kentucky’s Mammoth Cave is just one of the first caving destinations many Americans consider. One of many oldest tourist attractions in America and the most extensive cave system on earth, this sprawling 400 miles of caves is situated in central Kentucky at Mammoth Cave National Park. Visitors can choose to remain in the on-site Mammoth Cave Hotel, camp in the park, or stay at Among the many nearby off-site hotels. Multiple cave tours are around for everyone from the ultimate adventurer to the elderly. Some tours offer more accessibility than others, and sign language interpreters are available on some guided tours – the park staff recommends calling ahead for availability. Horseback riding, hiking and fishing are a couple of the many above-ground options available at Mammoth Cave National Park.