Journey to the centre of the earth in Spain
Gruta de las Maravillas, Aracena (Huelva)
Discover a mysterious world located in the depths of the earth. Places that have remained hidden from the eyes of man for thousands of years, whose interiors are packed with weird and wonderful formations. Come to Spain's tourist caves and caverns, perfectly prepared for general visits. A fascinating journey that will transport you to science fiction settings.
Spain has natural heritage of incalculable worth, not only on its surface, but also underground, with more than 10,000 known and explored caves. Some of these underground gems are not the sole preserve of speleologists and expert cavers, but are open to the general public. Explore their galleries and contemplate these works of art, sculpted by nature over millions of years. It is an unknown world that will amaze you.
There are all sorts of different caves to be found all over Spain. Take note, because the variety is enormous. Discover El Tesoro Cave, in Rincón de la Victoria, Malaga, one of only the three caves of marine origin known in the world, unique in Europe. Otherwise, come to El Viento Cave, on the Canary Island of Tenerife, one of the world's longest volcanic labyrinths, stretching over 17 kilometres, with strange lava cascades. Admire stalactites more than three metres high at the Campanet Caves, close to the road that runs between Palma and Alcúdia, on the island of Majorca, or head for Martel Lake, one of the world's largest underground lakes, in the Drach Caves, where classical music concerts are held daily. A real spectacle that is hard to forget.
Meanwhile, in Cantabria, northern Spain, the Soplao Cave awaits you. It is unique for its huge, abundant helictites - weird cave formations. Find out how prehistoric man lived through the archaeological remains and rock art to be seen at Los Murciélagos Cave, Nerja Cave and at Las Ventanas Cave, in the province of Granada, amongst others. Many of these caves are located in stunning nature areas, such as the Las Maravillas Cave, in the Sierra de Aracena y Picos de Aroche Nature Reserve, in Huelva, a cave that has inspired poets, writers, painters and musicians. If you want, you can also explore Europe's longest navigable underground river by boat, at the San José Caves, in the Uixó Valley, Castellón. You can even explore an old mine from the beginning of the 20th century, such as La Jayona mine, in the south of Extremadura, and find out what went on there one hundred years ago.
As you can see, there are options to suit all tastes, with no shortage of lakes with freezing, crystal-clear water, majestic galleries big enough to fit a football pitch or a cathedral, lava tunnels, deep wells and gorges, stone and rocks with a range of colours and formations... All this on trails that are well prepared for visitors of all ages. As well as learning, fun is guaranteed too. If you are of a more daring disposition, then you are in luck. Some caves offer special caving/tourism visits. Live a unique experience where adventure, nature, sport and culture come together. What more can you ask for? It is well worthwhile, rest assured.
More information: Association of Spanish Tourist Caves (in Spanish only)