The things that come to our mind when we think of ‘caves’ are hidden mysteries, unmatched adventures, and nature’s best-kept secrets. Caves are undoubtedly one of its most magnificent creations while nature leaves us awestruck with its splendor and myriad wonders.
There is no other place on the planet than the ocean depths that hides so much natural beauty than caves. The cavities and crevices deep within the mountains or beneath the earth are really majestic and mysterious. Here are the top ten greatest natural caves on the planet.
The Son Doong Cave, Vietnam
This cave which is known as the largest cave in the world is millions of years old. It is a result of the gradual erosion of limestone beneath the mountains by river water. When sections of the ceiling collapsed it created huge natural skylights. This cave has its own jungle, river, and climate. It is a world within itself. The cave has some of the tallest stalagmites in the world and it is also the home of an up-and-coming tourist attraction known as The Great Wall of Vietnam. This is also known as a large calcite wall as it hid a number of unusually large cave pearls in the size of major league baseballs.
Painted Cave, USA
The cave is situated in the popular Channel Islands National Park on Santa Cruz Island, California. There are colorful walls due to a combination of certain algae, lichens, and rocks. This sea cave is one of the longest and deepest of its kind and is bedecked with multi-colored flowers. Visitors can go kayaking with the aid of flashlights. You will see the striking waterfall over the entrance during the spring and it’s the best time to visit.
Fingal’s Cave, Scotland
Fingal’s Cave is in Scotland’s Staffa Island within the Inner Hebrides. It has hexagonal-shaped jointed basalt columns which are served as a natural walkway for visiting explorers. There are the unusual shapes of walls due to the gradual cooling and solidification of lava on the surfaces caused by fracturing and contractions. The cathedral-like atmosphere within this cave that overlooks the sea is because the cave’s size, its arched roof, and the ever-present echo of the waves.
Caverns Of Sonaora, USA
Caverns in Sonora, Texas are one of America’s most beautiful places. The caves have a natural walking trail, memorable crystal formations, and many densely packed helictites that are rare in both their complexity and purity. Unfortunately, a tourist vandalized the cave’s most famous formation, The Butterfly in 2006. But, the left side remains, and other formations are still growing.
Cave Of Swallows, Mexico
One of the popular destinations in Mexico is this conical-shaped vertical caving. It is the result of water erosion that occurred in a specific fault in a large plain of limestone. There are holes in cave walls as homes for white-collared swifts. These birds are related to green parakeets, hummingbirds, and swallows. The giant elliptical opening that leads to the cave shaft is large enough to contain one of New York City’s skyscrapers. Many people also visit there to engage in the BASE and free fall jumping.
The Waitomo Caves, New Zealand
This cave is also known as The Waitomo Glow-worm caves. They provide homes to countless bioluminescent glow worms. They attract their pay with their glow. They also trap their prey by hanging gooey, sticky strands of mucous. Enjoy when you visit there you can see the sight of the glowing worms on the walls and ceilings which look almost like stars. This place is a world-famous tourist spot.
Antelope Canyon, USA
This canyon is situated on Navajo property close to Page, Arizona. There are smooth edges and deep corridors due to the gradual erosion of the sandstone. The rock has a distinct flowing shape to it. There are also several different shades of orange, pink, and red. The colors are even more vibrant in the summer in the Upper Antelope Canyon. Then the direct sun shines down from the canyon top’s openings. They are muted in the Lower Antelope Canyon.
Marble Caves, Chile And Argentina
The Marble Caves are located in Patagonia. It is a group of unusual islands with openings that lead to intriguing tunnels, columns, and caverns of marble formed by the wave action from the waters of Lake General Carrera. If you want to see the swirling grey and blue patterns of the labyrinthine walls and the turquoise water you need a boat through the cavernous chambers. It looks like the bright sunlight peeks in to make the crystals on the walls brightly shimmer and the azure water sparkle.
The Caves Of Algarve, Portugal
The cave is located in the southernmost section of Portugal. It is rich with scenic grottoes, hollows, and caves carved into the limestone. Many caves can be found close to Lagos on the isolated beaches. You need a boat or dinghy to visit them. The most popular one is the Benagil’s Algar. You can have a truly picturesque experience, especially during the day when the constantly changing light filters in through the holes to make one’s view even more impressive with the various sand shades, textures, and dimensions of the complex rock formations, and the crystalline water.
The Ice Cave, Russia
Even though many seasoned travelers already know all about the remarkable crystalline ice caves in Iceland, Austria, the stunning ice cave found on near the Mutnovsky Volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula, is unique. It juxtaposes fire and ice. The cave is created out of a giant glacier by a local underground river originating from a hot spring that rises from the famous volcano. The ceiling and walls are composed of compacted snow. The beams of light bring out several undulating, vivid colors as it includes icy windows and a see-through roof.