Dobšinská Ice Cave
The National Natural Monument Dobšinská Ice Cave is situated in The Slovak Paradise, in the Spiš-Gemer Karst, cadastral area of the town Dobšiná, Rožňava District, in the National Natural reservation Stratená on the territory of the Slovak Paradise National Park.
The entrance to the cave is on the north slope of the Duča hill in height 969 m, 130 m above the bottom of the Hnilec Valley.
Dobšinská Ice Cave is approximately 18 km from the town Dobšiná. It is 1232 m long. The cave contains 110 132 m2 of ice, the maximum thickness of ice is 26,5 m. The cave according to its glaciation belongs to the most significant ice caves in the world. The cave was discovered in 1870, and it was open to public in 1871. In 1882 it became the first electrically illuminated cave in former Hungary. 475 m of the total lenght is open to public. The ice cave was discovered by a young engineer Eugen Ruffínyi, citizen of Dobšiná. The largest hall in the cave is the Large Hall, which is 72 m long, 36 - 42 m wide and 9 - 11 m high. There are interesting ice formations in the cave like the Niagara Falls, Altar, or the other column formation called The Well. The ice decoration is always changing.
The other remarkable space of the cave is the Small Hall with the Cemetery and the Small Ice Curtain. The artificially created space Chapel and the Ruffínyi Corridor emphasise the massiveness, wholeness and layers of the ice in the cave. In the lowest part of the cave, which is 48 m under the level of the cave entrance, in height 970 m above sea level, there are interesting formations like the Organ and Medusa.
The Dobšinská Ice Cave is one of the most significant wintering places for bats in Slovakia. There are 12 species of bats in the cave.
On 29th November 2000 the Dobšinská Ice Cave was listed to the UNESCO World Heritage as a unique natural gem - national natural monument and also acknowledged as a world-class unique object and according to the international low, for its protection, 161 states of the world are responsible.
Dobšinská Ice Cave is open from 15. May to 30. September.