Škocjan Caves is a magnificent cave system located in Slovenia. Škocjan Caves have been created by the Reka River eroding the limestone formations for over more than thousands of years. Being the largest known underground canyon in the world, Škocjan Caves are often referred to as the ”Underground Grand Canyon”.
Archeological studies suggest that people have lived in the Škocjan Caves and surrounding areas for more than 10,000 years. Because of their natural and cultural significance, they are on the list of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. They are on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance as an underground wetland as well. In 2004, UNESCO added the whole park to the Man and Biosphere Programme (MAB) and the Karst Biosphere Reserve. The caves have been acknowledged as a natural treasure of the Earth as it is a unique example of natural beauty with great aesthetic value.
This unique system of limestone caves comprises collapsed dolines, 6 km of underground passages with a total depth of more than 200 meters, many waterfalls, interesting rock formations, and many underground chambers, the largest one being Martel’s Chamber. The site is located in the Kras region, one of the most important places in the world to study karstic phenomena.
Cerkvenik Bridge, 47 meters above the Reka River.
Due to the particular microclimatic conditions, a special ecosystem has developed inside the caves. For example, the caves are home to olms: the blind cave salamanders. To preserve the delicate balance of the cave, photography is not allowed.