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Dan-yr-Ogof (also known as the National Showcaves Centre for Wales) is a 17km long cave system in south Wales, within the Brecon Beacons National Park. It's about an hour's drive from Abergavenny, a very special town in our lives. Our human can trace her ancestry in Wales back to 1091, and her family have lived in Abergavenny for hundreds of years.
I told Ferhad Junior I was taking him to see some caves for the day, which he was quite excited about. What I didn't tell him was that Dan-yr-Ogof is also a dinosaur park. Have you ever seen a small giraffe explode in apoplexies of delight? AND THEN I told him that the caves were used as a filming location for the Doctor Who serial The Pirate Planet . His little legs collapsed under him - the excitement was a bit too much for him.
There is also an awesome replica of an Iron Age Village, a Shire Horse Centre (I had a lovely chat with the residents there), a museum, some cool stone circles, a kids' playground, and a farm where you can meet Shetland ponies, alpacas, cows, chickens, rabbits, donkeys, sheep, goats, pigs, ducks and geese!!! Phew.
Dan-yr-Ogof Cave was discovered in 1912 by Tommy and Jeff Morgan. They discovered magnificent passages and chambers, but were prevented from getting too far in becasue it was such a tight crawl. It wasn't until 1963 when Eileen Davies, a local girl and member of the South Wales Caving Club struggled through it and explored 17km of the cave system. Cavers believe there is still much to discover.
Bone Cave was named after 42 human skeletons were discovered in its chamber, many dating back to the Bronze Age over 3000 years ago. Animal bones have also been found, but sadly n donkeys, giraffes, or hedgehogs.
Cathedral Cave is a massive cave passage decorated with thousands of delicate cave formations that make it look like a cathedral. These days, modern lighting and dramatic music bring the cave to life.
Five Fun Facts about Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves
- At Mr Morgan's Farm you can see a full size reconstruction of life in Wales 80 to 100 years ago.
- There are over 200 dinosaurs, ranging from Tyrannosaurus Rex and Brachiosaurs to Tsintaosaurus, making Dan-yr-Ogof one of the biggest dinosaur parks in the world.
- The caves were made from carboniferous limestone that formed 320 million years ago.
- The people who originally lived in Bone Cave during the Bronze Age period may have been the builders of the many stone monuments found locally.
- The caves are owned and run by the descendants of the Morgan family who originally discovered Dan-yr-Ogof.
Learn more about Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves
Official Dan-yr-Ogof Showcaves website
Virtual Tour of Dan-yr-Ogof Cave
Virtual Tour of Bone Cave
Virtual Tour of Cathedral Cave
Photos, information, and a cool video on Dan-yr-Ogof (NOT on your usual tour!)
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