Thailand attracts millions of tourists annually; its incredible picture postcard beaches, turquoise seas, vast depth of culture and most welcoming people puts Thailand on the top of most people’s wish lists of destinations. However, there is yet more to offer in the form of the beautiful caves in Thailand, with as many people choosing to go caving in Thailand as they would other sightseeing activities.
You can escape the hustle of street life, hire a guide if necessary and lose yourself in the peace and tranquility of some of the most majestic sights you will ever see and can only see in Thailand caves. When it comes to caves, Thailand will fulfill your every expectation.
Let’s explore what it is like to go caving in Thailand:
1. Tham Lot, Pang Mapha
Tham Lot Cave is in northern Thailand, in the Pang Mapha District, in the Mae Hong Province. Said to be the biggest cave in Thailand, it can be an adventure to explore. An extensive 1,666-meter-long, limescale cave system with the Nam Lang River flowing through it invites you into an intriguing and mystical land. A level of fitness is required to investigate this cave, as there are staircases to be climbed and more than one way of exploring.
First, you need to hire a guide and a gas lantern. You can then travel on a bamboo raft through the cave or go in on a raft and walk back through the forest. Many say that timing your exit at sunset will give you the most magical sight of thousands of Swifts flying into Tham Lot to take up their sleep position for the night. Be sure to visit the Column Cavern, the Coffin Cave and the Doll Cave, all deemed popular by tourists.
2. Phraya Nakhon Cave, Hua Hin
Phraya Nakhon Cave is considered one of the most exciting caving in Thailand experiences; Phraya Nakhon is located in the Khao Sam Roi National Park. Surrounded by pristine beaches, mountains and luscious forests. Be prepared for a boat ride or a hike to get to this cave. Either route will give you lovely scenery, and it is worth it to experience caving in Thailand.
The cave consists of two chambers with open ceilings, allowing sunlight to stream in, creating a serene atmosphere as light mixes with dark. A forest grows within, racing to the rooftop openings, adding color and nature to an already intriguing environment. The main chamber protects the Kuha Karuhas Pavilion, a gold and green temple, the smallest in Thailand and is a breathtaking sight.
Built by King Chulalongkorn around 1890 AD, the Kuha Karuhas Pavilion has been visited by some of the most significant leaders of Thailand. Look out for the initials of King Chulalongkorn and King Prajadhipok on the walls. Such history and setting will satisfy any thirst to be awe-inspired whilst exploring the caves in Thailand.
3. Tham Chiang Dao, Chiang Dao
Tham Chiang Dao can be found at the foothills of Doi Luang Dao, Thailand, consisting of over a hundred caves stretching over ten kilometers into the mountain. Its structure is one of the most impressive caves in Thailand. It is not all open to the public, but you will be entirely satisfied with the areas you can explore.
Hire a local guide with a gas lantern to walk you through the darkness. You can expect several natural limescale, crystal formations, and huge, hanging stalactite structures to welcome you, with many caves home to shrines, Buddhas and statues. You may even spot sacred symbols which date back many centuries.
4. Tham Khao Luang
The province of Petchaburi in Thailand has many temples, particularly cave temples in the mountains across the region. Situated about five kilometers from the city towards Khao Wang is a cave temple with a height of just ninety-two meters called Tham Khao Luang cave.
Although easily accessible by foot or you can drive up the road which leads to it, be aware that there are stairs to climb when you arrive. Tham Khao Luang was a favorite of King Rama IV when he was a monk, and it is said that in the depths of the cave, there is a rock formation of Jesus on the cross. Visitors can witness sunbeams shining through its natural skylight, illuminating the central Buddha and many stalactite structures.
5. Phi Hua Cave, Krabi
Located close to the Than Bok Khorani National Park in Thailand and locally known as “Big Headed Ghost Cave,” Phi Hua Cave is a tunnel beneath a mountain and is one of the most famous caves in Krabi, making it a popular Thailand cave. Mangrove forests surround these limescale caves, and unlike other caves, this ancient site is adorned with prehistoric paintings of humans and animals, making it one of the unique caves Thailand offers.
The local name of Big Headed Ghost Cave is quite apt as it is believed that three thousand years ago, the site was used as a burial site, with many skulls discovered here. A little eerie, but be comforted to know you can explore with peace of mind. Make sure you track down the imprint of a tiger paw found in the stone, which is well-known for this cave. As you explore Phi Hua To Cave, you will be amazed by the natural rock formations in the shape of dragons and crocodiles, a truly breathtaking sight.
6. Tham Lum Khao Ngu (Snake Mountain Cave), Kanchanaburi
As part of your caving in Thailand experience, many may suggest visiting Tham Lum Khao Ngu, found in the Lam Khlong Ngu National Park in Kanchanaburi. You will be amazed by the famous two-hundred feet tall limestone column, which resembles a giant church organ and is the tallest in the world; a beautiful breathtaking sight. You will indeed be immersed in the ancient atmosphere with such spectacular sights as well as striking stalagmites and stalactites which have taken on beautiful shapes.
When you have finished exploring the caves, you can explore your surroundings on a gentle walk or something more exhilarating such as hiking or Kayaking. The Nang Kruan waterfall will cool you down from the incredible heat once outside this beautiful Thailand cave.
7. Wat Tham Suwan Khuha Cave Temple (Monkey Cave)
Thailand’s Wat Tham Suwan Khuha Cave is located about ten kilometers outside Phang Nga Town. It makes for a scenic car journey as the region is famous for its impressive, plunging limestone cliffs and beautiful landscapes. You will inevitably come to the usual, recognisable temple gates where the road will lead to car parking places. Remember not to park too closely, as the monkeys are notorious for damaging any vehicle.
This cave in Thailand is ideal for exploring if you usually feel claustrophobic in such a space, as this is an ample, light space with high ceilings. You have room to maneuver at around forty meters long and twenty meters wide; you can wander in awe at the incredible fifteen-meter-long golden Budha and other Budha structures. Take the stairs next to the reclining Buddha, and enter another cave with golden statues and artifacts.
You will see numerous religious pieces, and you may be fortunate enough to witness a monk who often meditates in front of the reclining Buddha and is even sometimes joined by some lazy cats; such is the peace and tranquility of the place; the cats often go to sleep. As you continue to the end of the cave, you can climb a wide staircase that goes out to the forest and onto smaller caves to explore. Exploring Wat Tham Suwan Khuha Cave is bound to satisfy your senses and cultural thirst..
So, planning to have the best family holiday in Thailand, these caves must be on your wish list to explore for sure. Along with exploring the caves, you can experience diving in Thailand. Thailand is also known for scuba diving at its stunning beaches.