Son Doong tops 10 greatest natural caves in the world

Son Doong cave, in the central province of Quang Binh, Vietnam, topped the list of the 10 Greatest Natural Caves in the world, which was announced by the famous travel website Wonderlist.
The great beauty of Son Doong cave. (Photo: Ryan Deboodt)
The great beauty of Son Doong cave. (Photo: Ryan Deboodt)

The site stated that the Son Doong Cave is the world’s largest cave, which was formed by the erosion of limestone underneath the mountains by river water.

“The cave hides a whole world inside it, with its river, jungle and climate. Some of the world’s tallest stalagmites are found here”, the website noted.

According to Wonderlist, the cave has a large calcite wall called The Great Wall of Vietnam, behind which, abnormally large cave pearls the size of baseballs were found.

Son Doong Cave was surveyed by the British Royal Cave Research Association (BRCA) in 2009. With a volume of 38.5 million cubic metres, the cave is the largest natural cave in the world.

On April 30, 2013, Son Doong was recognised as the largest cave in the world by the Guinness World Records. Since its milestone, Son Doong has become a symbol and brand of Vietnam’s tourism.

It has been voted and honoured by prestigious international travel magazines, such as the top 11 best tourist destinations around the world in 2019 (according to Telegraph), one of the five most desirable destinations of the world in 2019 (according to Lonely Planet), and one of the top destinations in 2022 (by AFAR).

In addition to Son Doong, the nine other greatest natural caves in the world are Ice Cave near Mutnovsky Volcano (Russia), Caves of Algarve (Portugal), Marble Caves (Chile-Argentina), Antelope Canyon (American Southwest), Waitomo Glow-worm Caves (New Zealand), Cave of Swallows (Mexico), Caverns of Sonora (Texas, the US), Fingal’s Cave (Scotland) and Painted Cave (California in the US).