The Siemna Cave (Dark Cave), nestled on the side of a river valley in a magnificent national park near Krakow, Poland, contains a wealth of ancient secrets.
How interest arose in the cave
Scientists examined the cave and found evidence of a very ancient human settlement. People lived in the cave 120,000 years ago, and therefore Siemna Cave is considered one of the most important archaeological sites in Poland.
In 2007, archaeologists began excavating the cave, and to date, about 1000 stone artifacts have been collected.
Some of the artifacts discovered include knives and tools that are now on display in a park near the museum.
What is Siemna Cave
- The 230 meter long limestone cave dates from the Late Jurassic period, about 150 million years ago. Inside the dark cave, there is one large chamber that turns into a very long, wide passage.
- The cave has a large number of interesting stalagmites, and the chamber's ceiling is decorated with several small tubular stalactites.
Historical reconstruction of a Neanderthal settlement
In 2004, a reconstruction of a Neanderthal settlement was built in front of the cave, which was visited in 1787 by King Stanislav August Poniatowski and Bishop Adam Narushevich (1733 - 1796), a Polish-Lithuanian nobleman, poet, historian, playwright, translator and publicist.
Here, traces of one of the oldest prehistoric settlements in Poland have been found, dating back to around 120,000 BC.
According to Bishop Narushevich,
"The grotto was carved by nature from the heart of a rocky mountain. Even at the entrance, it looks like a huge underground vaulted hall. Aside from this slightly tapering vast dungeon, there is another cave in the form of a narrow corridor with a lower ceiling. How far this person reaches the rock, no one does not know".
Currently, the only inhabitants of the cave are bats and other invertebrates, but in very ancient times this place was a settlement for people.
The cave is not only of great archaeological importance. It is also a significant natural landmark. You can visit the cave and guided tours are available from April to October.