The Sueva Dupka Cave

Bulgarian sights
Location:  Lovech Region, Brestnica

Caves are unusual natural phenomena. Inside, you can either feel as part of a fairytale or experience your worst nightmare. Bulgaria has lots of caves but only some of them are open to public. One of the pearls of Bulgarian caves is Sueva Dupka. It is not the largest, neither is the longest, it does not have two or three levels, but it is one of the most beautiful and ‘musical’ caves.

It is hard to reach it. From Sofia, you should take the highway to Varna. When you reach Yablanitza, you continue a bit further, up to the road crossing leading to road Е83. Lukovit is up the road, and on the right - Veliko Tarnovo. You take this road and you will reach the village of Brestnitza only 5 kilometers further. According to a large brown notice board in the center, the cave is only 4 kilometers from here.

Our guide enters in the earth’s bowels first and we are following in a long line.The concrete Eco-path is a really narrow one. The well-known stalagmites and stalactites are scattered from both sides, with length starting from several centimeters, to meter and a half- two meters. Tens of layers from the water drops are piled, resembling a melting ice-cream, running down the wafer cone. Our first stop is in front of a huge stalacton for whose formation several hundred years were necessary. This is an incredible creation out of our world. And, in fact, we are in the kingdom of Hades, in the underworld; things really look different here, according to all legends.

Things are getting even more different when we leave the tunnel and find ourselves in one of the largest cave halls in Bulgaria. Its total length is 60 meters. A huge stalacton rises straight from its heart, composed of hundreds of smaller ones, resembling a Gothic cathedral with numerous decorations and ornaments. This is the end of the cave, but we have hardly seen much of it. Different from the caves of a gallery type /you pass from one hall to another, and you return /, the tunnel here is very short and only a few minutes later you are in the main hall. The path meanders through it among the numerous stalagmites and stalactites. Then, it descends from its other side, comes back to the hall, but from the opposite side. Going up to the so called canine tooth of the Tyrannosaur, we reach the Organ. Our guide hits its drapery-like surface with a metal stick and even manages to make up a tune. There are similar ‘music instruments’in several places of the Sueva Dupka cave.

We descend down the narrow and slippery steps. On the right, a long fossil resembling a drape spreads, and on the left – a genuine frozen waterfall in caramel colors. In front of us, the Joy of Venus stands up- this is a huge phallus, with all its attributes, hidden in a small niche.
We go on downwards, taking the concrete arched path, back to the Cosmos hall. We are surrounded by stalagmites and stalactones, resembling‘boiling’ waves, springing from the insides and spill down the surface. The walls are coming closer, the ceiling is getting lower and finally we see a tiny vaulted aperture through which we can go out.
For a second time in the big hall, our guide attracts our attention to what is above our heads – helictites, unique for Bulgaria. These are stalactites, grown up aside and not downwards, due to the constant air flow, carrying the water drops aside. Tiny stone needles growing up to the left – a view that can be seen only in this place.

The round-trip finishes with a niche to the right and then, we spend some time in the central hall. The premise is illuminated by the lightning of tens of cameras, sealing the grandness of nature. The monstrous stalactone in the middle, surrounded by stalactites and stalagmites resembles a bristled up beast, opened its toothed mouth. If you happen to have a more vivid imagination, you can feel as one of the ‘Jurassic Park’ characters.

The Sueva Dupka cave is among the 100 National Tourist Sites and after its restoration it definitely is worth seeing. And the visit can last a whole day and will fill you up with unbelievable emotions.

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