Tham Khao Luang is an impressive cave stuffed with stalactite. Accessed via an array of steep stairs, this cave shrine is Rama IV's favourite. Deep inside the cave, there is supposedly a rock formation of Jesus on the cross. The central Buddha figure is sometimes illuminated by the sunlight glow that enters through the skylight.
Situated in the Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park, the Phraya Nakhon Cave is one of the most mysterious caves in Thailand. The mystery of the place owes to the fact that the cave is a little hard to reach to and not a lot of visitors manage to reach the stunning site. A revered Royal golden meeting hall, built for Rama V is the main highlight once you reach the main area. The Phraya Nakhon Cave has two chambers with open ceilings to allow sunlight to penetrate through, rendering the place a soothing calmness.
At the foothills of the limestone mountain, Doi Chiang Dao lies the entrance to Chiang Dao Cave. Among all of the caves in Thailand, this cave has one of the largest networks of passageways and tunnels. The interiors of the cave are patterned with the naturally occurring stalagmites and stalactites. The cave running for more than 12 kilometres also contains several Buddhist relics, ancient statues, a lovely fish pond, and exciting dark passageways. Two chambers - Tham Sua Dao and Tham Phra Non lie at the start of the caves many passageways and are well lit.
Local monks can often be found meditating inside the Chiang Dao Cave.
Phi Hua To Cave or Phi Hua Toh Cave is located in Ao Luk, Krabi. It is also known as Hua Galok and was once a burial site. The Cave has several paintings, some of which are about 3000 years old. Visitors can also check out the natural rock formations inside the Cave that are shaped like dragons or crocodiles. When seen from the Tha Pring Canal, the Cave looks like a giant head. It is thus called Phi Hua Toh Cave which means Big Headed Ghost Cave.
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Situated in the Mae Hong Province of Thailand, Tham Lot Cave is a prehistoric cave and a paradise for thrill-seekers. The caves run deep, about 1600 metres into the mountains, and are sometimes referred to as coffin caves. Tham Lot Cave is perfect for those wanting to explore a somewhat spooky attraction.
Tham Lum Khao Ngu Aka is famous for its 200-feet tall limestone column, which is also the tallest in the world. The Cave is also known as the Snake Mountain Cave and is located at the Lam Khlong Ngu National Park in Kanchanaburi, Thailand. Visitors get to see some magnificent stalactites and stalagmites here. The attraction is surrounded by nature. Those wanting to escape the mundane lives can head to the national park and visit this Cave.
Sitting at the bottom of a tall limestone cliff in Ko Phi Phi Leh, the Viking Cave gets its name from olden drawings made by sailors who took shelter during passing storms. A visit to this cave is made via a speedboat, but you aren't allowed to enter it.
Apart from being treated as an attraction, the cave serves as a nesting ground for the Swiftlet bird. This, in turn, makes it a suitable site for the collection of the nests of these birds, which is a prime ingredient in Chinese cooking. Apart from being used in cooking, these nests are used in medicine as well.
Located in Mae Hong Son, Thailand, Mae Lana Cave is a set of two caves, Diamond and Coral. The route to the caves is rugged, goes over a steep slope through a jungle and can be covered over a two-wheeler. However, entry is allowed only with a guide. The dark, cold and dingy caves have a river flowing through them, and the surface is mostly slippery. At the entrance, one can purchase plastic shoes to help make their tour comfortable and safe. Visitors can choose which Cave they want to explore depending on the time they can spend at the attraction.
This is an interesting cave with large wooden phalluses. Also known as the Princess Cave or penis cave, this is named after the Phra Nang princess. Here, the fishermen and other visitors make offerings to the symbolic phallus of Shiva to help with fertility. They also believe that the sea-princess will help them bring good results in fishing.
A buttress located in Mae On district in Thailand, the Crazy Horse Cave hosts several caves like the Anxiety State Cave and Morning Glory Cave. It takes a little bit of experience to climb the mountain and access the caves. So, the attraction is not always crowded. Nonetheless, visiting in groups is recommended for safety reasons. Crazy Horse Cave is home to scorpions, red ants, bees, etc. The trail leading to the Cave also has plants that may cause painful rashes when one comes in contact with them. Hikers need to be careful not to touch any unidentified plant and carry a first aid kit.
Tham Pla Cave is a popular tourist attraction located in Pong Ngam, Thailand. The Cave is formed in a limestone mountain in the village. The attraction has a fresh freshwater stream with schools of fish right at the entrance. The Cave houses a Burmese style idol of Buddha. Here, locals believe that Buddha blesses devotees with good fortune. So, many visit the Cave to offer prayers. The place is also home to several monkeys. Although they do not have trouble, one needs to be careful not to disturb them.
Muang On Cave is located at a short distance from Chiang Mai, Thailand and is a preferred attraction for a quick adventure getaway for the locals. After climbing a flight of stairs that leads to the entrance of the Cave, visitors get to explore a well-light cave. They can hire a guide or explore all by themselves and check out the limestone formations, petrified wood, fossils and a statue of Gautam Buddha. The centre of attraction inside the Cave, a huge stalagmite, is a must-see.
Situated in the mountains of the province of Phang Nga in Thailand, Phung Chang Cave is a popular attraction amongst adventurers. Here, visitors have to canoe through a stream, then proceed over traditional bamboo rafts till they reach a point from where the water level is only about knee-deep. From this point, they then need to wade or hike through to reach the Cave. People need to be physically prepared for walking about 2 kilometres through the waters to explore the Cave and return.
How many of these caves in Thailand have you been to? Let us know in the comments below!