The world is filled with a great variety of natural wonders and distinct formations. Some of these attractions are secret caves located all over the world formed throughout time from all kinds of materials, and due to their nature serve their own purpose.
1. Orda Cave
This is the largest underwater gypsum cave of the world, located in Russia. Diving in it can be a pleasurable experience, with astonishingly crystal clear waters, albeit extremely cold temperatures. The mineral-rich area where the cave is found causes the water’s noticeable clarity. The Orda Cave’s picturesque environment inspired many a photographic expedition to illustrate among others the legend of the Lady of the Orda Cave, or simply to explore and promote awareness about the cave. Orda Cave’s or Ordinskaya’s massive size still has a large number of unexplored territory within its midst.
2. Great Blue Hole
The most famous sinkhole – off the mainland and Belize – is a whole new world you can enter. So called a vertical cave because you dive into it, the cave’s depths of 400 m showcase tall stalactites and a variety of tropical fish swimming within. The Great Blue Hole’s circular shape is more than 300 m across. The blue hole of Belize in the Caribbean was discovered to have started formation during four periods of quaternary glaciation. The cave was flooded when the ocean began rising again.
3. Waitomo Glowworm Caves
Arachnocampa luminosa, a species of glowworm native to New Zealand, set the scenic country’s North Island on the map by inhabiting the Waitomo Glowworm Caves and lighting up its interior with thousands of tiny glowing threads. Glowworms create iridescent threads of silk and mucus to attract insects, making home in one of New Zealand’s most visited caves. They commercialised the glowworms’ assets to tourists who can navigate by boat, and enjoy other cultural draws and entertainment inside.
4. Krubera Cave
Also called Voronja or Voronya Cave, Krubera Cave was declared the deepest cave in the world at 6,800 feet. Located in Abkhazia Territory, the Krubera Cave penetrates deep into the heart of the Arabika Massif. 1,000 feet into it, explorers can encounter bizarre life forms from parasitic worms to transparent fish. All around, grappling under Krubera Cave’s extreme depths and conditions, you’ll face scorpions, spiders, narrow passages, and two weeks until you reach the end of this “inverted” Mount Everest.
5. Puerto Princesa Underground River
Located in tourist hotspot Palawan in the Philippines, the Puerto Princesa Underground River – the world’s longest navigable underground river – winds and flows through a cave at a length of 8.2 kilometers. At the end of its journey, the Subterranean River empties right into the South China Sea. You can only travel 4 km of the river; for the entire length of the river, you’d need a special permit. The cave features stunning limestone formations, large bats, deep caves in the water and even more caves and channels within.
Caves are where our ancestors found their homes and began to flourish. Nowadays, the sight of one still inspires a feeling of the unknown, with some seeing caves as dangerous, mysterious places, or entrances into another world. With some made of limestone and marble, ice, with astonishing depths, unique stories of formation, or simply surprising qualities, the world’s caves are one of the best places you can explore.
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