Millennium Cave Adventure in Santo, Vanuatu
In late August this year, as part of the annual Tok Tok tourism trade event sponsored by Air Vanuatu, a few lucky media personnel attending got the chance to experience some of the wonderful activities available around Vanuatu.
One of the group has recounted their experience of the Millennium Cave in Santo, taking you along on their exciting journey underground!
If you have an eye for adventure and want to venture into prehistoric times, then experiencing Millennium Cave in Santo, Vanuatu is perfect for you.
Before reaching the Cave you’re treated to a hike through lush jungle surrounded by the sounds of chirping birds. The walk to the cave entrance takes the best part of an hour, and follows the same paths local villagers have been following for generations.
As the trail continues, you feel as though at any moment a Tyrannosaurus will meet your eyes through the leaves that surround you, that are quite literally the size of car doors. But the moment when you first see the entrance to the Cave is something else.
It’s a surreal experience walking through such dense jungle and seeing the dark, awe inspiring opening appear as the dense mountain jungle break into a deep hole. It is here that you start your steep descent into the cave’s entrance.
Lowering yourself into the Cave is an adventure in its own right, as you follow well mapped paths lined by ladders, ropes and grip holes. A moderate level of fitness would be recommended for this Caving experience – a good rule of thumb would be if you’re comfortable moving your own bodyweight and fit enough for a decent walk then you should be fine!
Once in the Cave, you are given a headlight to help spot the bats, and navigate the contours of the million year old limestone walls that line the ancient cave structure.
Through the Cave you are often find yourself up to waste deep in crystal clear, fresh mountain water which is wonderfully refreshing after the hike, to get to this majestic spot deep in the Santo Jungle.
Catching a glimpse of sunlight, as you follow the exit to the Cave, you find yourself in a secluded freshwater oasis.
Then, following a break and swim in the water, you continue on for a Canyoning part of the adventure.You literally float down the breathtaking Canyon, filled with waterfalls.
Later in the day, after a short walk back to a local village where your journey began, you start to realize just how remote, and untouched Millennium Cave is. Here’s a picture of some of us with one of our friendly tour guides!
All in all, this would have to be one of the most inspiring and beautiful places I’ve ever visited, and is something I can now tick off my ever-growing bucket list.
If you’d like to learn more about the caves and tours that are offered, here’s a great place to start:
For flights, accommodation packages, and more, look no further than AirVanuatu.com
Photos ©Robert Raback