Caves have fascinated humans for centuries. Experts estimate that the depth of a cave cannot exceed 3,000 meters due to the pressure of the overlying rocks.
Whether there are caves that are more than 3000 meters deep? So far no deeper caves have been discovered, but there are a few caves that go deeper than 2000 meters.
What are the deepest caves? A cave is a natural hole that goes deep underground. They are formed over millions of years by various geological processes and atmospheric influences. People are drawn to caves for the mystery, the wonder and the thrill.
Many people can only remember a handful of times that they ever had the chance to explore a cave to see stalactites and stalagmites, and the mysterious creatures that live in a world without light.
Caves attract us because they are so mysterious and we wonder how deep they go. Caves draw us back to our ancestors, when shallow caves served as shelter, but deep caves also terrify us with their suffocating darkness.
Before we take a look at the top 10 deepest caves, it’s worth pointing out that the record holders keep changing as humans explore caves and descend deeper than they’ve ever gone before. Those who once topped the rankings have slipped through the rankings. There are many caves that have not yet been fully explored. Many of these caves are too dangerous for the public.
Some of the deepest caves in the world are in Abkhazia, which considers itself an independent nation after its declaration of independence in 1992. But Georgia claims it is part of its sovereign territory. The Republic of Abkhazia is recognized by only 7 of the 193 member states of the United Nations.
In the list below, we’re going to take a closer look at the top 10 of the deepest caves in the world. The maximum explored depth of a cave represents the height from the highest entry point to the lowest accessible point. Without further ado, these are the top 10 deepest caves in the world.
1. Veryovkina Cave, Abkhazia / Georgia – 2,212 meters
Veryovkina is one of the only two known caves on Earth that go deeper than 2000 meters. The entrance is in the Arabika Massif, the Gagra Mountains of the Western Caucasus in Georgia. Although discovered in 1968, cavers only managed to reach the maximum depth of 2,212 meters in March 2018. They are still exploring the cave.
2. Voronja Cave, Abkhazia / Georgia – 2197 meters
Also known as the Kroebera-Voronia Cave or Cave of Kroeber, it is the second deepest cave on Earth, with a maximum measured depth of 2,197 meters. It is located near the Sarma cave. Voronja Cave was the first cave to be explored at a depth of more than 2000 meters.
3. Sarma Cave, Abkhazia / Georgia – 1,830 meters
The Sarma Cave is also located in the Gagra Mountains of Abkhazia, Georgia. It is known to be at least 1,830 meters deep. Cavers continue to explore, and there is a good chance they will descend deeper into the cave system. We wouldn’t be surprised if it becomes the deepest cave in the world in the near future.
4. Illuzia-Snezhnaja-Mezhonnogo, Abkhazia / Georgia – 1760 meters
The Illuzia-Snezhnaja-Mezhonnogo cave network is located in the Gagra Mountains in Abkhazia, Georgia. It has a maximum depth of 1760 meters. Only the most experienced cavers dare to descend this cave network. It consists of two caves: the Illuzia and Snezhnaja.
5. Gouffre Mirolda, France – 1733 meters
Gouffre Mirolda is the deepest cave in France and was the deepest cave in the world between January 2003 and July 2004. It was the first cave in the world to be explored more than 1000 meters deep.
6. Lamprechtsofen-Vogelschacht, Austria – 1632 meters
7. Gouffre Jean-Bernard, France – 1,602 meters
Located in the French Alps, Jean Bernard was discovered in 1963 by the French adventure group Groupe Vulcain. Until 1980 it was considered the planet’s deepest cave. Gouffre Jean-Bernard has at least 13 known entrances. It has a length of 20.4 km.
8. Torca del Cerro del Cuevón, Spain – 1589 meters
There are many caves in Spain and Torca del Cerro del Cuevón is the deepest. It goes 1,589 meters deep. The cave is located in the Principality of Asturias in northwestern Spain. Experts consider it one of the most challenging descents in the world.
9. Hirlatzhöhle, Austria – 1560 meters
This cave was discovered in 1949 near the village of Hallstatt in Austria. Located in the Dachstein Mountains of the Austrian Alps, it is one of the deepest and longest caves in the world. It can take more than two days to reach the deepest point. Hirlatzhöhle is one end of a large cave system that, if fully discovered, could be over 2,200 meters deep and 482 km long.
10. Sistema Huautla, Mexico – 1545 meters
Located in the Sierra Mazateca Mountains of Mexico, it is 1,560 meters deep from the highest point of access to the lowest point. According to National Geographic, it has 25 different entrances and more than 40 miles of mapped passageways.