Ruta Tematică: Caves Route

Name of Touristic Attraction: Ponicova Cave (Gura Apelor <<Water Mouth>> Cave or Bats Cave)

Location: in Mehedinți County

Description It is located near the village of Dubova, Mehedinţi County, and you can enter into the cave either on land or on the Danube with a boat, passing 500m under the wall of Ciucaru Mare massif to the mouth of the cave. At the entrance of Ponicova Cave, Ponicova stream created a series of short and wild keys and a natural bridge about 25 m long and 6-8 m high. Considered to be the largest cave in the Danube Gorge, Ponicova Cave is dug into the limestone wall of the left bank of the Danube, in front of the Big Boilers. The galleries of the cave measure 1660 m length and cross the massive Ciucarul Mare and then go directly to the Danube. The area belongs to the Iron Gates Natural Park and the karst relief is represented by dolines, lakes, short and wild chutes formed by Ponicova stream, but also through endocarst forms, a series of canopies and several caves. Ponicova cave is made of multiple galleries. From the land, you enter the Ogăş Gallery. From here, a narrow trail leads to the Bats Gallery, a room over 100m long, 60 wide and high over 30 m, whose floor is built of collapsing blocks, pits, concretions and guano mounds from relatively big bats. The Ogăş Gallery spreads in two sections, one of which leads to the Concretion Gallery, considered to be the most beautiful part of the cave, where the anemolite and the Column Hall are located, and the other leads to the Scale Gallery and the Clay Gallery.

Conditions: Because the cave is not arranged for visitors, the access is a bit more difficult. It is recommended to visit the cave in guide-led groups, with lamps, rubber boots and appropriate equipment. The cave has a medium difficulty degree and a 60 m oscillation of level. The visit takes about 2-3 hours. The visit of Ponicova Cave can be done during the whole year, but it is advisable to visit it between May and October. Specific equipment is recommended: boots, flashlight, thick clothing and acceptable physical condition. During periods of flood, it is often totally or partially flooded. The Ponicova cave was declared a speleological reserve due to some fossil remains of Ursus spelaeus, a fragment of very old ceramics and endemic species.

Information and Contact:

The cave is administrated by the “Iron Gates” Natural Park”:

phone/ fax: +4 0252 360 511,

phone: +4 0372 702 529,

website: http://www.pnportiledefier.ro,

e-mail: parc@drobeta.rosilva.ro

Route closed to other thematic routes:

In the area you can also visit:

  1. Veterani Cave
  2. Decebal Statue
  3. Mraconia Monastery
  4. Danube Gorge
  5. Danube Boilers

Touristic Ofers:

–         In the area there are hiking routes in the Iron Gates Natural Park and boat trips on the Danube

Other useful information

Events in Dubova:

–         “Sons of the Village ” Feast – 9th  September

–         “Nedeie” – 8th  September

Accomodation:

Decebal: DN57, Dubova, tel: +40747 808 585

Melba: DN 57, Dubova, tel: +40727 474 179

Delfinul: DN 57, Dubova, tel: +40740 791 538

Casa Marco: tel: +40744 879 168

Casa Lucian: Dubova, tel: +4765 954 639

Vila Hercules: Dubova, tel: +40748 330 162

GPS coordinates: lat/lng: (44.595489115657635, 22.261303200000043), 34, Golubinje, Serbia

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