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It’s time to take your African Adventure underground. Africa’s hidden bones are as beautiful and ancient as the animals that walk her plains and the plants that flourish in her soil. Here in the timeless Klein Karoo, the experience of a lifetime awaits, deep within the Cango Caves. Buffelsdrift Game Lodge’s luxury tented camps make the perfect home base, not only for the safari of your dreams, but a spectacular expedition (or three) to the hidden face of Africa, too.
Less than 30km from Oudtshoorn lies one of the most spectacular subterranean landscapes found anywhere on earth. The Cango Caves are so large, we haven’t even finished exploring them all, and they’re believed to be one of the largest limestone caverns in the world! First fully explored by Jacobus van Zylin in 1780, he would find evidence of human occupation from prehistoric times. Ancient San art adorned the walls, still visible today despite the toll of time, and a wealth of artefacts from the Stone Age and beyond have been sourced here. But the Cango Caves aren’t just about the people who have so lightly touched their ancient face. Stretching over 16km, and up to 1.5km in width, the caves trail the length of the Cango Valley. Formed over 750 million years ago by the brute power of surging streams, it’s the perfect environment to preserve a wealth of fossil data. Your eye will leap immediately to the towing stalagmites, but perhaps the most breathtaking of all is the layer upon layer of glistening stalactites cascading from every high surface. Limestone columns and other staggering natural beauties litter the caverns, dazzling the senses no matter where you look.
Caves call to a primal part of the human mind, and bold visitors have been exploring the Cango Caves since the 1800s. Sadly, these early visitors didn’t have the same knowledge and care for the environment we do now, and some of the delicate limestone features were destroyed. This is why tours are limited even today, ensuring this spectacular subterranean landscape endures for our grandchildren as well. Dripstone formations, the type the caves are renowned for, can easily be destroyed by too much human breath and movement. The sheer, staggering depths of the caves is such that we’re still exploring, and new secrets are found regularly. This is a place that celebrates not only natural beauty, but our living heritage, as those in the know unearth exciting fossil finds and other evidence of a time before history itself.
We highly recommend you do! It’s the perfect complement to the time spent on our private game lodge, and will deliver an experience like no other. The caves are open year-round, closing only on December 25th. They offer a 1-hour tour that’s accessible to almost everyone, and if you’d like something a little more challenging, there’s adventure tours that head into deeper, less explored parts of the cave. It could surprise you, especially if you’re used to underground caves in the Northern Hemisphere, but the caves are pretty humid! Be sure to wear something cool, or pack layers for extra versatility.Explore the Cango Caves today, and explore a different face of South Africa. Why not pair it with a safari at Buffelsdrift Game Lodge? You’re sure to leave inspired and in awe of the beauties and many faces of mother nature!Image from https://www.cango-caves.co.za/gallery/