One of the biggest water cave in the world
There are wonders, but sometimes it takes a coincidence to discover them. This happened about 40 years ago, when the shepherd Ali Sadr grazed his animals on a meadow about 100 km away from the provincial capital Hamadan. In search of a goat who had lost his way, Ali Sadr stumbled upon a cave entrance between the rocks. Behind it hides a cave system that seeks its equal: meters high ceilings, imposing stalactites and stalactites, and caves that sometimes have a width of over 100 meters. A special feature is the huge underground lake, whose clear water has earned the cave the nickname "Blue Cave".
So far researchers have found little life in Ali Sadr Cave. Only single-celled people populate the waterholes and passages of this natural phenomenon. Even bats who otherwise feel at home in such cave systems are looked for in vain in the Ali Sadr Cave. This may be an indication that there is no other entrance to the underground labyrinth, estimated to be about 130 million years old. Even traces of Stone Age inhabitants of the cave have not been discovered to this day. Meanwhile, however, it is certain that the ancient Persian king Darius I used the caves as a water reservoir over 2000 years ago. So far, about 14 km of the cave network has been explored, but scientists believe that it only accounts for about 60% of the total system. This makes the Ali Sadr Cave the third largest cave in the world.
Iran travelers should definitely make a detour to the village of Ali Sadr, not to miss the beauty of the caves. Minibuses operate regularly between Hamadan and Ali Sadr. The caves themselves can be explored by boat. With approximately 400,000 visitors annually, the "Blue Cave" is one of Iran's most popular tourist attractions, but nobody should be deterred by that. Visitors enjoy breathtaking views, unique rock formations, narrow gorges and fascinating panoramas. After the approximately two-hour excursion, which also includes a stop on a small island, you can review the new impressions with a coffee or tea in the café inside the cave. A visit to the Ali Sadr Caves is certainly one of the most beautiful holiday memories that one has on his trip home in the luggage.