Iran, being one of the most spectacular parts of the world, is made up of 31 provinces. Each of the provinces has unique characteristics and houses some of the most gorgeous landmarks of the country. One of these provinces is the Hamedan Province which contains about 442 of Iran’s cultural sites. The capital city of the Hamedan Province is Hamadan and it is believed to be one of the oldest cities of Iran as well as oldest of the world. Out of the many gorgeous landmarks of Iran, the city of Hamadan is the home of one of the most majestic and largest caves of the world: the cave of Ali Sadr.
The cave of Ali Sadr was originally known as the cave of Ali Saard which, in Persian, means “Cold”. The cave is located in the mountains of Subashi, about 100 km north of Hamedan in the Ali Sadr Kabudarahang County and is the largest water cave of the world. Masses of tourists come to visit this cave each year as it is one the most mesmerizing places of the world. The cave is located on the side of the hill of Sari Ghiyeh and has many lakes flowing through it with its walls rising as high as 40 meters. The tourists can visit the cave by boats for as far as 11 km after which the path leads to a central square called “the island”.
On entering the cave by stairs before boarding a boat, one witnesses a large number of labyrinth hallways all lined with deep lakes that extend into the darkness. Despite the darkness, the clear water of the lake enables visibility up to 5 meters of depth. The cave, at various points, is lined with colored stalactites along with deposits of calcium carbonate sediments which gives the cave a magical look. Along with these spiky icicles, we also see stalagmites that rise from below the cave taking various colors and forms like needles and these miraculous characteristics together gives the visitor an out-of-the-world experience.
The cave is thought be almost 70 million years old and almost up to 16 km of the cave has been discovered and explored so far. Historical tools and walls lined with ancient artworks indicate that human civilizations prevailed in this cave more than 10000 years ago. Illustrations of animals, hunting scenarios and hunting tools within the cave prove that the humans existed in the cave in the era when hunting was common. The cave has also been installed with a dinosaur sculpture to offer an amusement factor for the children. “Freedom Hall” is another spectacle present in the cave which has been naturally created due to the breakdown of tectonic fault areas. The cave houses a “Wedding room” or “1000 stalactites room” which is lined with many icicles and can host special events for a fee. The tourists, at the end of the trip, are returned to the “six-entrances room” where some branches of the original lake joins together.
The Ali Sadr cave is one of the most marvelous landmarks of Iran which is toured by millions of people each year. It gives the tourist an exclusive insight to the phenomenon of nature and one can see a true wonder of the world unfolding before their own eyes.Publisher: Fadiyah Sameh