|Open:||no restrictions |
|Light:||none, bring torches, floodlight, as much and strong as possible.....|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.|
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|Last update:||$Date: 2014/07/21 08:12:35 $|
|1946||begin of archaeological exploration by Prof. Dr. Í. Kiliç Kökten.|
|1972||first speleologic exploration.|
We were not shure, if we should add this cave to showcaves.com. The cave is not gated, and in order to protect it, we are not really interested in publishing much about it. On the other hand it is probably the most impressive cave one can visit while staying at the Turkish Riviera, and it is shown in maps, listed in internet pages and even mentioned in guidebooks. So we decided to try to add some practical information, some security issues and some environmental thoughts to what is already avaliable.
Kocaín Mağarası is the most important cave of the area. It has been inhabited during prehistoric times and again during Byzantine and early Christian time. The cave had a religious function during early Christian times. Then it was forgotten and rediscovered at the beginning of the 20th century. There are various inscriptions and cave paintings inside the cave, but the most impressive archaeological remains are the basements of various houses in front of the cave and some cisterns inside the entrance.
The archaeological excavation started in 1946. Prof. Dr. Í. Kiliç Kökten from the Department of Prehistory at the University of Ankara excavated at the cave for several years. It took until 1972 that the cave was first explored by speleologists. The reason is obvious, Turkey had no infrastructure of cavers, cave exploration was developed very late. The first exploration was made by a team of French cavers, accompanied by Dr. Temuçín Aygen.
The cave is really huge. The entrance is 70m wide and 20m high, with a steep slope down into the entrance hall. This huge passage is probably 200m long, with level floor an up to 50m high ceiling. At the end of this chamber, at the cisterns, the cave turns to the left, the floor going downwards continually. The cave is in total 680m long, and this second passage is as big as the entrance passage and 80m high. There are numerous huge stalagmites, about 20m high, which are merely dark shadows against the last remains of daylight from the entrance.
The cave is rather easy to visit. Good shoes, and most important a lot of light are essential. Because of the enormous size, LED lamps or mini torches are not a good idea. Although it is possible to see the path with those lights, it is impossible to see much of the cave. However, the light from the entrance is visible almost to the end of the cave, and so it is rather hard to get lost.
The cave has little speleothems, despite the huge stalagmites, but there are places where the floor is covered by flowstone. At some places there are rimstone pools, and sometimes here are patches of cave coral.
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