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The Labyrinths of Mlynky Cave

17. June 2010 by Michelle 0 Comments

Cavernous caves are one of the most mysterious and mystical natural wonders of the world and there are tons of them in Russia and Ukraine. The Mlynky Cave was accidentally discovered in 1960 by a local boy who noticed strange cracks in the ground. He reported his findings to his teacher who confirmed there were deep caverns in need of exploring.


The caves are said to have been formed almost a million years ago when thick gypsum deposits began to break apart and water would flow between the cracks, creating a labyrinth of corridors, chutes, and crevices. Sparkling stalactites and stalagmites formed throughout the mazes which are the main attractions for visitors today.


The name Mlynky comes from the word "mlyn", which is a sort of mill, built at the brook near the cave over one hundred years ago. The mill was used to extract gypsum for use in plasters and fertilizers. Each cavern has a different name, such as Tsentralny Rayon (Centre), Pivnich (North), Dyky Zakhid (Wild West), Peremoha (Victory), Shchaslyvy (Happy), Kazky (Fairy Tales), and others. Explorers are continuing to uncover new sections even today.


Exploring the caverns is not an easy task due to the small and tightly enclosed spaces. Crawling, and even sliding along your back or belly, is a requirement in many parts of the cave. However, those that are brave and adventurous enough to accept the challenge will enjoy an incredible experience. Since there are so many sections to see, many visitors choose to spend a whole weekend at Mlynky Cave. Tour packages, including accommodations, equipment rental, and three tours, start around $150 per person.