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Spelunking Caving Potholing in Turkey

Spelunking Caving Potholing in Turkey
With over 40,000 caves and caverns in Turkey, this is a paradise for visitors who love to participate in this activity. With the many underground lakes, churches and cisterns, stalactites and stalagmites these caves offer an entirely different world. Up to 35% of Turkey's terrain is made up of rock conducive to the formation of these caves and most are specifically found in the Taurus Mountain Range northwest Anatolia, in southeast Anatolia and Konya’s closed basin.

The caves are found in both high and low altitude areas and Turkey has some of the largest and most extensive caverns in the world.
The longest cave is Pınarözü Cavern located 16km west of Beysehir Lake and the deepest is Cukurpinar Sinkhole at 1880m south of Anamur.
The Cavern Research Society (MAD) was founded in Turkey in 1964 initiating the first investigations and later in 1973 the first university club was established, Bogazici University Cavern Research Club (BÜMAK). In 1979 Karst & Cavern Exploration Unit was founded under the authority of MTA Geology Studies Department and who today execute most cavern explorations. The number of documented cave investigations that have been carried out by both local and foreign explorers is 800.


Caves of Ankara

Caves of Antalya

Caves of Bursa

Caves of Izmir

Caves of Aydin

In the Aydin - Kusadasi District Zeus Cave has no rivers or creeks but water that drips from cracks has formed the many damlataş (droplet shaped precious stone) formations. The cave also has travertine pools and small lakes, the moisture level in the atmosphere increases the further you go inside and there no significant air flow.


The form, development and climatic condition of caves determine their purpose and usage and the following list are some of the most common:
Natural Deep Freezing
Preserving and maturing animal based products i.e. cheese, butter etc.
Mushroom growth and culture
To aid diseases of the Respiratory system
Storing liquefied gas, natural gas and fuel oils
Shelter and refuge for military purposes
Fertiliser (Guano) production
Deducting natural minerals
Finding underground water sources and bringing them to the surface
Preservation and pollution research on natural spring water
Research on the regional geological; geomorphologic; hydrological; hydro-geological; anthropological and paleo-ecological properties.

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