Aug 2, 2016

Real Underground Kingdom That Has Existed for Millions of Years Went Unnoticed, Until Recently...

28 Stunning Photos Of The World’s Largest Cave
By Kid Krunk / m.atchuup.com
Real Underground Kingdom That Has Existed for Millions of Years Went Unnoticed, Until Recently...

In 1991, Ho Khanh, a local farmer was out gathering wood in the dense jungle of Vietnam’s Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, when he stumbled upon an enormous cave entrance. The roar of a rushing stream and the whistling sound of wind in the cave can be heard through the entrance located in a limestone cliff.

According to Khanh, it “felt like something from the underworld.” He soon forgot the cave’s location until he met British spelunkers exploring the area, some 20 years later. He began looking for the cave entrance again, which he found in 2008. The following year, he led an international team of scientists from the British Cave Research Association, led by Howard and Deb Limbert, in exploring what is now known as Son Doong Cave, the largest cave in the world.

Below are 28 stunning photos that capture the cave’s surreal, massive beauty. Enjoy!

The name “Son Doong” cave means “mountain river cave.”

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John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Hang Son Doong skyhole, John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

It is a solutional cave located in Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park, Bo Trạch District, Quang Binh Province, Vietnam.

son doong cave 3

Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Garden of Edam, Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

As of 2009, Son Doong is the biggest known cave in the world.

son doong cave 14

Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

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John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

Son Doong was created 2-5 million years ago by river water eroding away the limestone underneath the mountain.

son doong cave 12

Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

son doong cave 5

Partick Murray on 500px │ via HuffPost

A part of the ceiling, where the limestone was weak, collapsed and created huge skylights.

son doong cave 28

Watch out for sunbeams, Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Standing in the light, Mike Rowbottom on 500px │ via HuffPost

The cave is over 5.5 miles long. It has a jungle and river, and could fit a 40-story skyscraper within its walls.

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Dinh Anh Cuong Nguyen on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Underground river, Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

son doong cave 27

Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Underground forest, John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

The first expedition (from 10 to 14 April 2009) into Son Doong Cave was stopped by a 200-meter high calcite wall that the spelunkers dubbed the “Great Wall of Vietnam.”

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Approaching camp one, John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

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The depths of Son Doong, Mike Rowbottom on 500px │ via HuffPost

The following year, a team successfully traversed the rock wall and were able to reach the end of the cave’s wall, officially determining Son Doong to be largest in the world.

son doong cave 26

Mike Rowbottom on 500px │ via HuffPost

The biggest chamber of Son Doong is more than 3.1 miles long, 660 ft high, and 490 ft wide.

son doong cave 24

John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

son doong cave 19

John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

The cave is also home to some of the world’s tallest stalagmites which tower 260 ft in the air, and limestone “cave pearls” (the size of baseballs) can be found on the cave floor.

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The world’s tallest stalagmite, John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Otherworldly waterfall, Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

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John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

son doong cave 16

John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

son doong cave 18

Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Camp in Hang Son Doong, Ryan Deboodt on 500px │ via HuffPost

son doong cave 20

Land from another time, Quinton Wall on 500px │ via HuffPost

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Cave climate, John Spies on 500px │ via HuffPost

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