The Philippine archipelago is home to beautiful islands, amazing diving spots, stunning waterfalls, and friendliest people in the world. That is why millions of tourists from around the globe are flocking to the country every year. However, the Philippines doesn’t only offer spectacular tourist destinations that can be reached on the ground, on top of the mountain or underwater. Our country also hides more incredible wonders of nature in the hollow places underground, the caves.
Caves are formed by nature over hundreds or even millions of years. Hidden in the darkness of caves are stunning rock formations called speleothems, which can also be classified into stalactites, helictites, stalagmites, flowstones, cave crystals and other types.
There are thousands of caves across the Philippines. Samar, alone, has already hundreds of caves that were indexed and there are even thousand more to be explored yet. The island of Samar is the third largest island in the Philippines, next to Luzon and Mindanao. It is where the current largest cave system in the Philippines (the Langun-Gobingob Caves in Calbiga) is located.
The island is not only hiding the largest cave in the country but also the most beautiful ones. Here are 20 amazing photos that will show you why Samar is the caving capital of the Philippines.
1. Visiting spectacular places like this is truly a once-in-a-life-time experience.
2. Spending time with this cave is like travelling back in time a thousand or even a million years ago.
3. Who would not want to enter inside the biggest cave in the Philippines?
4. Getting inside this cave is like getting into another world.
5. Are you wondering what animals are living inside a hollow place like a cave?
6. Don’t worry, this is still Earth, not another planet.
7. Can you resist this entrance to Sulpan Cave?
8. Have you seen angel wings inside a cave?
9. Who says beautiful waterfalls are only found above the ground?
10. And who says there are no cool rivers underground?
11. I don’t mind walking and treking for hours just to get inside this beautiful cave.
12. Here’s a crystal paradise inside a cave in Catbalogan City.
13. Is that a tooth from Megalodon, a prehistoric giant shark that lived millions of years ago?
14. Samar is truly a haven for cavers.
15. Don’t you want to be part of this exhibition full of learning and adventure?
16. I think I want to become a speleologist now.
17. Did our ancestors live here?
18. Dare to dive deep in a 1.8 km long underwater cave.
19. This is a huge room for three people.
20. So are you ready for Samar caving adventures?
The photos above are only few of the thousand caves that are yet to be explored in Samar. Being one of the largest islands in the Philippines, Samar can hide several marvels of nature that will truly surprise visitors from around the world.
Caving or spelunking is fun. However, we should not also forget that caving requires great responsibility to preserve and protect our caves, which contain important non-renewable resources such as paleontological and archaeological deposits, cultural artifacts, minerals, speleogens, speleothems, and biological (animal and plant) life.
Caving activities in the Philippines is governed by Republic Act No. 9072 or otherwise known as the “National Caves and Cave Resources Management and Protection Act.” Irresponsible acts inside the caves, such as harming the speleogem or speleothem inside any cave and disturbing the free movement of any animal or plant life inside or out of any cave is prohibited by this law.
Smoking, eating, vandalizing, camping, throwing garbage, and destroying trees outside the caves can also harm our caves. Moreover, it is also required that tourists must wear proper caving gears, bring proper equipment, and be guided by a well-trained caving guide to ensure their safety, as well as to protect the caves from harm. This is why a permit from the local government must be secured first before any caving tour or exploration is made.
Explore, learn, appreciate and protect our caves
Caving is to explore, learn, value, and to protect our natural treasures for the next generation. To have a wonderful, memorable and safe caving experience in Samar, you may contact cave master and speleologist Joni A. Bonifacio at 063-055-2512301/09192943865 or visit his website at Trexplore.