Peştera Polovragi

The Cave of Pahomie from Polovragi


Useful Information

Location: Near Baja de Fier.
From Baja de Fier east to Polovragi, turn left, follow main road. Before the Polovragi Monastery turn right and stay on road.
In the gorge of Oltet river. Parâng Mountains. Munṭii Căpăṭânii (Capatanii Mountains, literally: Mountains of the Skull).
(45.200181, 23.783492)
Open: FEB to MAR daily 9-16.
MAY daily 9–19.
Tours every 30 minutes.
[2021]
Fee: Adults RON 20, Children (6-18) RON 10.
[2021]
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave. Jurassic limestone.
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: L=10,350m, T=8-9 °C.
Guided tours: L=900m, Min=4.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:  
Address: Peştera Polovragi, Cheile Oltețului, Polovragi, Gorj, 217365, Tel: +40-754-541-482, Tel: +40-744-546-437. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

1974-1981 explored and surveyed by Asociatia Speologica Focul Viu Bucuresti.
1984 electric light installed and opened to the public.

Description

Peştera Polovragi (Cave of Polovragi) is located on the left side of the gorge, 200 m from the entrance and only 5 m from the road through the gorge. The huge cave portal is used by the visitors to park their cars. The main passage of the cave is electrically lit, a tunnel which is 2 m to 8 m high and about 10 m wide. This passage shows an abundance of speleothems.

The cave is also known as Peștera lui Zamolxe (Zamolxe Cave) after Zamolxe, a god of the Geto-Dacians. He was a shape shifter and lived in this cave. A throne-shaped stalagmite is thus called Zamolxe's Chair. He was also a warrior who motivated his people to fight against the invaders.

The cave is home to about 300 lesser horseshoe bats (Rhinolophus hipposideros).

The cave is a bit off the beaten path. If you arrive at a time with little visitors you can explore the cave self-guided. Only if there are more than four visitors, the guide will offer a guided tour. It seems the cave is open daily during summer and school holidays, but during low season it's not always open. In this case a phon call or email might be advisable. The cave is located at the beginning of the gorge, so we recommend a short walk along the road to see the most spectacular part of the gorge. There is also the Polovragi monastery along the road which is worth a visit.