Diamond Bar, California
February 25, 2005
Before walking into the caves, you may want to take some time to buy some flowers for an offering to lay at the many Buddhist alters inside the caves. Also, there is a beautiful pond with large koi fish that you can buy food to feed.
You pay a small fee for entrance into the cave (around 20 baht) and then you pay another fee to have a guide take you around with a lantern (100 baht per group). I suppose this is optional, but you’ll need the guide unless you know your way around. I should mention that this is definitely not an activity for those that are claustrophobic. There are many times that you must practically crawl though tiny openings. One more note - there is a guy with a camera that may try to follow you to take pictures. He will charge you about 1,000 baht. Tell him upfront if you don’t want him to hang around you.
The tour lasts about 1 hour. The floor of the cave is rocky and can be slippery, so be careful and make sure that you wear sturdy shoes. Also, be careful where you put your hands, as there are some rather large spiders. There are also many Buddhist alters throughout. Some are actually quite large and must have been carved in the cave. There is a slight sulfur/mineral smell, but of course this is what has created all the wonderful stalactites and stalagmites. There were various formations that the guide pointed out and the photographer had us pose on. Many were named after elephants (big elephant, little elephant, elephant ear, etc.), one was a throne, and another was like a face. You can even see the beginnings of some formations where the mineral water is bubbling up from the floor. This is truly a fabulous testament to nature, as some of the formations are magnificent.
From journal Thailand IS safe after the Tsunami