Doline 2 - Garden of Edam - A jungle inside the Son Doong cave

Doline 2 is situated 1km from Doline 1. According to the measurements of the British Vietnam Caving Expedition group, the second doline of Son Doong has a maximum depth of 252m from the top to the jungle floor. The explorers were surprised when they approached this jungle during their 2009 expedition. They thought this was the exit of the cave, but when they surveyed the entire area, they realized that they were still there, inside the cave. It is very unusual to have a jungle within a cave.

Doline 2 - Garden of Edam a primeval jungle inside the cave.

Why was it called the Garden of Edam?

The second doline in Hang Son Doong is known as the Garden of Edam. The formation of doline 2 allows light to penetrate into the cave creating a very lush vegetation and a small jungle; An endemic ecosystem is able to exist in Son Doong Cave thanks to sunlight.

The reason for the name Garden of Edam was during the survey and measurement expedition to Son Doong in 2009, the members of British Vietnam Caving Expedition realized that Son Doong was going to be the largest cave in the world. Previously British cavers had discovered Deer Cave in Malaysia which was then the largest cave in the world. The explorers of that cave named the exit of the cave in the jungle “The Garden of Eden”. As a joke the explorers of Son Doong decided to name the second doline ‘The Garden of Edam”.

The only path to go through The Garden of Edam.

The ecosystem of the Garden of Edam inside Son Doong Cave

Doline 2 - Hang Son Doong Cave has a height of more than 250 meters, is about 175 meters wide with enough light for a whole rainforest to grow in the heart of Son Doong Cave. In addition a large amount of ancient bat guano provides fertilizer for the plants and trees.

Son Doong cave has its own ecosystem, due to being located deep underground, the trees often have narrow but very tall trunks. Some trees are up to 40-50m tall while the trunk diameter is much narrower than would be expected. The trees put their energy into growing as tall as possible to gain as much sunlight as they can. From Doline 2 moving deeper into the cave the sunlight can hardly reach, hence only mosses and ferns can grow in this area. There is a cold damp air current blowing out of the cave, so you will often encounter mists covering the path from inside the cave to the rainforest underground. The path up to doline 2 at times can be misty and spectacular. The scenery becomes more unique and extraordinary when the jungle hides itself inside a curtain of mist, at other times it appears clearly with all the tall trees. A famous Doline 2 time-lapse video published on Google and Culture showed this incredible scene.

Besides the flora diversity, Doline 2 is also visited by some typical animals such as flying squirrels, snakes; Occasionally monkeys come down to look for food and many other species live in different parts of the Garden and the edge of the cave. Strangely, there is a bird that often flies around the Doline and into the cave in the early morning, and if you are lucky, you can hear the loud noise of its wings when it flies, according to the conjecture of experts, it could be an owl (or Eagle Owl)

The ecosystem in the Garden of Edam.

Doline 2 campsite under a starry curtain of the night

Doline 2 campground is the second campsite in Hang Son Doong, the place that receives the most sunlight from the outer world. The campsite is located right on the sand at the edge of the cave, so it remains dry on rainy days. At the campsite, you can enjoy a cup of coffee while gazing at the starry sky above Doline 2 on clear nights, or watch the clouds hovering in the Garden of Edam in the early morning. You can also see the waterfalls flowing down from the dome of the cave on heavy rainy days. It is one of the most amazing locations within Son Doong Cave, which you can enjoy when participating in Son Doong Expedition tour. With the setting of the primeval jungle underground and its own climate system this campsite is considered one of the most beautiful campsite in the world.

Campsite below the Garden of Edam.

The Oxalis Experience.

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