Group of five unique caves which to a large extent have been formed by elephants who over many thousands of years have mined salt here. These seem to be the only caves which have been created by the elephants – but there are caves in South America which have been created by other, now extinct animals.
The last place on Earth (except the oceans) with some chances to find large, hitherto unknown species of animals. This remote lake in the middle of large rainforest is a site of exotic legends about large, fierce predatory animals – mokele-mbembe and emela-ntouka.
The current Lord Howe Island is only 0,25% of the former area of now lost enormous island. For millions of years unique life forms evolved on this island – and now thousands of unique animal and plant species live only on this small remnant of the former island and nowhere else in the world.
Cave of the Crystals, Naica: 27.851483, -105.510956
Jellyfish Lake: 7.161110, 134.376290
Black Hole of Andros: 23.975677, -77.702122
Lake Tele: 1.345011, 17.150366
Caño Cristales: 2.264165, -73.794515
Lake Bonney: -77.716908, 162.399789
Usterling Growing Rock (Johannisfelsen): 48.662246, 12.648607
Daikoku Sulfur Cauldron: 21.324317, 144.193789
Oklo Mines: -1.400021, 13.160274
Ikaite tufa columns in Ikka Fjord: 61.191163, -48.027942
Patomskiy Crater: 59.284685, 116.589299
Ol Doinyo Lengai: -2.759612, 35.914042
Abanda Caves - caves of unique bat-eating crocodiles: -1.444192, 9.699241
Liang Bua: -8.530869, 120.443400
Kelimutu lakes: -8.767335, 121.817027
Aldabra: -9.418546, 46.343564
Lord Howe Island: -31.552251, 159.078896
Kitum Cave: 1.027796, 34.754435
Goualougo Triangle: 2.141059, 16.494583
Chocolate Hills: 9.798233, 124.168465
Blue garnets of Behily: -24.257679, 45.401682
Hypersaline lakes beneath the Devon Ice Cap: 75.319816, -82.883638
Sireneviy Kamen - the only find of charoite: 58.342442, 119.092417
Merelani Hills - the only find of tanzanite: -3.560646, 37.028096
The unique underworld
There were times when people really lived in caves. Not all people – but many. Now, these times have passed and caves seem to be a weird, even frightening and at the same time exciting environment to us.
There are known tens of thousands of caves around the world and this list is increasing fast. Many caves are amazing but some are just unique. Just think about these cases:
Movile Cave in Romania has its own small ecosystem with 33 species of small critters which live only here and nowhere else in the world. This cave was isolated from the outer world for 5.5 million years.
Khoun Xe Cave in Laos has the largest rimstone pools in the world and… the largest spiders in the world! Their leg span is 30 cm!
Lechuguilla Cave in the United States is one of the most beautiful caves in the world. We all known such cave formations (speleothems) as stalactites and stalagmites. But here are found some other, nearly unique kinds of speleothems: such as hydromagnesite ballons and U-loops.
Gruta de las Canicas in Mexico has some 200 million cave pearls! In fact the whole cave is covered with them. Other caves are proud of they’ve got one, two. But here… 200 million!
Sistema Roraima Sur in Venezuela is the world’s longest known cave in the quartzites. Here also are found unique cave formations, unlike to anything else in the world.