The Cango Caves, located in the Western Cape province of South Africa, are a must-see attraction for any traveler visiting the region. These limestone caves, formed over millions of years, are home to a unique and breathtaking underground world that is sure to leave visitors in awe.
A brief history of The Cango Caves
The Cango Caves have a rich history dating back to the 18th century. The first recorded exploration of the caves was in 1780 by a local farmer named Jacobus van Zyl. He discovered the caves while searching for a lost ox and initially only explored the first few chambers. The caves were later rediscovered in the early 19th century by a group of British soldiers, who opened them to the public.
In the following years, the caves became a popular tourist destination, and several expeditions were conducted to map and explore the depths of the caverns. Today, the Cango Caves are a designated National Heritage Site and are protected by the Heritage Western Cape.
One of the most popular activities at the Cango Caves is the guided tour, which takes visitors through the main caves and highlights the various rock formations and formations. Some of the most impressive features include the massive stalactites and stalagmites, as well as the intricate flowstone formations that adorn the cave walls.
Noteable Rock Formations at Cango Caves
The Cango Caves are famous for their stunning rock formations.
These are icicle-like formations that hang from the cave ceiling. They are formed by the slow dripping of water, which deposits mineral deposits that gradually build up over time.
These are similar to stalactites, but they form on the cave floor. They are formed by the dripping of water from the cave ceiling.
This is a type of rock formation that is created by the flow of water over the cave walls. It has a smooth, wavy appearance and can be found in various colors.
These are thin, curtain-like formations that hang from the cave walls. They are formed by the dripping of water and the gradual buildup of mineral deposits.
These are formed when a stalactite and a stalagmite meet and grow together.
These are some of the main rock formations that can be seen in the Cango Caves, but there are many other fascinating features to discover on a guided tour of the caves.
In addition to the main caves, visitors can also explore the Cango Caves’ adventure tour, which includes a more challenging hike and the opportunity to crawl through narrow passageways. This tour is not recommended for the faint of heart, but it is a great way to experience the caves from a different perspective.
Another great feature of the Cango Caves is the Cango Wildlife Ranch, located just outside the caves. This ranch is home to a variety of animals, including crocodiles, cheetahs, and ostriches, and visitors can take a tour to learn more about these fascinating creatures.
Other Activities In And Near Cango Caves
The Cango Caves are located in the Western Cape province of South Africa, near the town of Oudtshoorn. The area surrounding the caves is known for its natural beauty and outdoor activities, making it a great destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers.
One popular attraction near the Cango Caves is the Cango Wildlife Ranch, which is located just outside the caves. The ranch is home to a variety of animals, including crocodiles, cheetahs, and ostriches, and visitors can take a tour to learn more about these fascinating creatures. The ranch also offers a variety of interactive activities, such as cheetah walks and crocodile feedings.
Another great outdoor activity in the area is hot air ballooning. The rolling hills and mountains of the region provide a breathtaking backdrop for a hot air balloon ride. The balloon rides are offered early in the morning, when the winds are calm, and the views of the sunrise over the mountains are spectacular.
For those interested in history, there are several historical sites in the area surrounding the Cango Caves. The town of Oudtshoorn is known as the “feather capital” of the world, and visitors can take a tour of the historic ostrich farms and learn about the history of the industry. Additionally, the Cango Valley is home to several caves that were used by the indigenous San people, and visitors can learn more about their history and culture.
In addition to the Cango Caves, visitors can also explore the many hiking and biking trails in the surrounding area. The Outeniqua Mountains, which are located near the caves, offer a variety of hiking trails that range in difficulty and offer scenic views. The area is also a popular spot for mountain biking and horseback riding.
The Cango Caves and the surrounding area offer a wide range of activities and attractions that appeal to a variety of interests. From wildlife watching and hot air ballooning to hiking and historical tours, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
The Cango Caves are a must-see destination for any traveler visiting South Africa. With their unique geology and rich history, they offer a one-of-a-kind experience that is sure to leave a lasting impression.