Caving Camuy River Cave System in Puerto Rico - Rio Camuy Spelunking

The River Camuy Cave System (Parque Las Cavernas del Río Camuy) is located in northwestern Puerto Rico, some one hour drive from San Juan. It has something for all the depths-of-the-Earth lovers. Spread out over an area of more than 260 acres, these 45 million year old subterranean natural limestone caves coupled with waters of Camuy River (known as the second or third largest underground river in the world) definitely ranks among the best tourist attractions in Puerto Rico.
24. 7. 2013

The Camuy cave system is laid out over 10 miles and is made up of over 220 caves with several entrances. However, these numbers represent just a fraction of the entire cave system as it has not been completely explored yet. Some experts believe that there are another 700 or so caves within the cave system. You can access the cave system either to watch it only or with a caving experts to explore it from within. Several adventure operators in the area provide you with a necessary permission and the equipment to follow deeper. Only experienced spelunkers can penetrate the cave and the underground river with special permission from the National Parks Company of Puerto Rico.   

Rio Camuy Cave Park

The largest and easily accessible system of Caves is the Rio Camuy Cave Park, discovered in 1958. Operated by the Administracion de Terrenos, the extensive system of passageways has been mapped for 7 miles, although not yet all of it is open to the public. The capacity is 1,500 visitors per day. The best time to visit it is in the morning. Rain in the afternoon sometimes ends the tours early because of concerns about rising water. After taking a bilingual tram tour through a vegetation-filled sinkhole to the mouth of Clara Cave, you are guided past huge stalactites and stalagmites and into caves as much as 200 feet high (you can fit a 20-story building into this particular chamber).

Puerto Rico Spiral Cave and Sinkhole

Visitors must be in good physical conditions in order to walk into "Cueva Clara" and reach "Sumidero y Cueva Espiral" to see the mouth of this cave. They must go down to it through a scenic 205-step boardwalk. The challenge is getting the way back to the tram. Once walking down into the sinkhole, the cave itself is off limits to reach. This sinkhole is believed to have once been an enormous cavern that collapsed thousands of years ago. At the opening of the cave there is an impressive sight (photo).

How to get there

The area entrance - closest city is Lares, located some 80 km from the capital San Juan. From San Juan you take Highway 22 west and continue 65 km before taking to the left for St. 129.

Text:  Wikipedia   Corrections: Thomas   Video: Youtube

24. 7. 2013
Tags Speleology

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