Grotta Gigante (video slide show)
La Grotta Gigante is a giant cave just outside Trieste. We took bus 42 to get there and got some great views of the city and the bay on the way to Sgonico, the town where the cave is located. We got there early, had a cappuccino. I sketched and we ate some blackberries off a neglected bush. Along the way we had fabulous views of Trieste and the bay, perhaps the best yet.
The main cavern is 107 m (351 ft) high, 65 m (213 ft) wide and 130 m (430 ft), long. It is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s largest tourist cave. One of the formations is about 12 meters (39 feet) high and up to 4 meters in girth.
A thin cable 100 meters (328 feet) in length supports two pendula which record the movement of the earth’s crust. There was an earthquake of 8+ on the Richter in 1989 although the cave suffered no damage.
There are 500 steps to the bottom of the main cavern, 500 back up. There is an additional 160 meter drop which is not for ordinary visits.
Here is a short slideshow video, with a bit of scary music to go with it. Don’t ask my why scary other than it would be frightening in the total darkness.