Son Doong Cave – Son Trach commune in Bo Trach district, Quang Binh province- is the largest natural caves in the world. This cave is located in the caves if Phong Nha- Ke Bang.
Son Doong cave is part of the underground system connected to more than 150 different activities in Vietnam, located near the border with Laos. Limestone mountains Vietnam-Laos border region has many caves, such as the Phong Nha has been known for a long but Son Doong cave has been discovered only in 1991 when Ho Khanh, a local people stumbled out into the isolated store to avoid the rain.
In 2006, when the expedition Association Royal cave to this area, the Ho Khanh new poll to tell them. It’s really hard for his new find their store which is located deep in the jungle with quite a dangerous terrain, away from major roads and can not be found on Google Earth. Under his guidance, they went deep into caves, photography, surveying, and collecting scientific data. They also spent a great honor for this cave named Ho Khanh.
April 22, 2009, the delegation Association Royal Cave Limbirt led by Howard announced the cave and found that the size of Son Doong cave is actually the world’s largest. In January 2010, the explorers returned to Son Doong to learn more about the cave system.
Son Doong cave has formed about 2-5 million years ago when river water flows through the limestone was buried along a fault line. Water erosion and curettage as a giant tunnel under the mountains in the earth. In the soft places, the ceiling collapsed forming holes, hang long into the giant arch.
In 2013, the cave was opened to the public. Expeditions are allowed only through one company, Oxalis, who have a legal permit to run tours. They run an exclusive five-day expedition that nor for the faint of heart. A tour costs USD 3000, but it is money well spent. Remember, the cave is mostly used for scientific research, and more people have stood on the summit of Mount Everest than witnessed the surreal beauty inside this cave.
Unfortunately, you need to be extremely fit and patient, as there is a waiting list of about two years. The government only releases around 300- 500 permits yearly and will take time to get yours. Limiting the tour to only one operator has protected the cave from mass development. Only 10 customers per departure are permitted. Tours run once per week between February to August per year.
As one of the last truly pristine environments in the region, Hang Son Doong is a place so remarkable that it demands protection. One can only hope that a sustainable and responsible decision is made in these critical months.
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