Theriospilos | Locations

Theriospilos

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It lies at the location Hyloftes – Therio, 40 minutes northwest of the village Kavoussi Ierapetras. The elevation is 50 metres, it is descending towards a cliff that leads to the seashore underneath the cave. To the Northeast, lies the bold coast Spathi tou Homata, where layers of phyllites, tile-like crystalline limestones and dolomites can be discerned.

Dolomites from the Triassic make up the rocks in the area of the cave. Above the cave, there is some appearance of clay, which the locals call lepida or agolifa. After the entrance, a lower first chamber opens up whose dimensios are 7 *8. A spectacular large chamber follows, 37 m in length, 25 m in width and 1,6-7 m in height with a slightly sloping floor at first, which becomes abruptly steep.

The decor is rich and makes a strong impression on the visitor. Small and big pillars are scattered everywhere. Clusters of stalagmites make up exquisite wholes. Besides, there is a majestic high white stalagmite. Two stalagmites broke long ago and they are lying on the floor, the one horizontally and the other in inclination. This phenomenon is extremely rare and it is challenging for speleologists. At the depth to the left of the big hall, there is an obstructed sinkhole.

Water escaped from there when the cave was a bed of an underground river. A gold furnace lies near the cave in a small emergence of the rocky soil, which consists of phyllites, quarzites, and dolomites, measuring 40 * 13 metres. According to Faure, it is about the vestiges of a coppersmith’s furnace of a period later than the Middle Ages, and, according to all indications, it was used by Roma coppersmiths.

The cave was mapped and studied by El. Platakis on 27th June 1971 and it presents great interest. Its total length attains 44 m, its width is 25 m and its height varies from 0,5 to 7 metres. A large number of bats lives here, startling the visitor.