Type of attractions: Kraška Cave
Name: Kostanjeviška jama
Length: 1813 m explored trenches (210 m tourist cave)
Depth: 47 m / 154ft
Characteristics: water cave with a series of fossil, occasionally flooded, water and flooded tunnels and depression cavers
Not far away from Kostanjevica on Krk, in the original valley of the Studen brook, at the foot of the Gorjanci, lies one of the most beautiful and longest karst caves in South-eastern Slovenia
A tour of Kostanjeviška jama
One of the most extreme and isolated islands of the Dolenjska karst is present on the slopes of the Gorjanci hills in the hinterland of Koštanjevica na Krki. It is here that the subterranean Studena stream has carved out the longest and most impressive cave system in Dolenjska. The cave arose in the badly fractured carbonate rocks, which were formed by dynamic tectonic processes at the foot of the rising Gorjanci hills.
Exploration has so far uncovered 1813 m of subterranean tunnels, which are composed of a series of fossil and occasionally flooded tunnels in the older part of the cave and the impressive depression caverns, water and flooded shafts of the newly discovered sections.
The old part of the cave can be seen during a tourist visit. The over 60 m long entrance tunnel was formed in a clearly visible fault, which was remodelled by a watercourse. The tunnel terminates in a 16 m deep chasm, into which lead the staircase to the occasionally flooded levels of the cave. The picturesque Razvodna dvorana (Watershed Cavern) opens out at this point. It runs from the deep lake under the staircase, beside the course of a shallow stream to the Presihajočo jezero (Intermittent Lake). The lake formerly flooded the entire tunnel, but the lake level has dropped considerably since the cave has been opened to the public. Steep steps lead from the lake to the higher Križna dvorana (Cross Cavern), at the end of which is a low entrance to the Kapniška dvorana, which has the most stalactites in the system and is one of the most beautiful Dolenjska caverns. It is adorned by various stalactite forms, the largest of which is the mighty stalactite pillar, the symbol of the cave. This is surrounded by Father Frost and the stalagmite dwarves. This marks the end of the 210 m long tourist path.