Top Underground Cave Hotels

6 December 2013

Channel your inner Fred and Wilma by checking into an underground cave hotel. While these unique accommodation experiences are a little more comfortable than those that prehistoric man enjoyed, you're still welcome to grunt, dress in animal skins and thump your chest vigorously. Here are our favourite underground cave hotels around the world.

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Desert Cave Hotel, Coober Pedy, Australia

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To escape the blistering Australian heat, the locals in Coober Pedy found they could dig relatively easily into the sandstone earth below and build for themselves their own homes. Travellers can enjoy this subterranean experience at the Desert Cave Hotel, which boasts 19 underground suites that are quiet, cool and airy. While you're in the region, you could take up a spot of fossicking and unearth precious opal.

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Cappadocia Cave Resort & Spa, Turkey

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In a region known for its incredible moon-like landscapes, the rooms at the luxurious Cappadocia Cave Resort are carved into the mountain. Despite the impressive stone appearance, each room features internet access, a flat-screen television, floor heating and special LED lighting. In the complex, there's also a wine cellar that is similarly carved from rock and houses wines from around Turkey and the world. But don't spend all your time underground, be sure to appreciate the spectacular views, especially from the Les Visages Bar, which is particularly magical at sunrise and sunset.

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Les Hautes Roches, France

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Carved into a cliff face in the famed Loire Valley, the Les Hautes Roches literally translates to the 'High Rocks.' While today the property is a luxury five-star experience, the cave was once used by monks before being converted into an 18th-century manor house. The views of the Loire River are terrific and Tours is just down the road.

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The Caves, Jamaica

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Overlooking the Caribbean Sea, The Caves feature one and two bedroom cottages and suites that are perched dramatically on limestone cliffs. Caving enthusiasts will appreciate the restaurant that features hand-crafted stone tables and the private dining cave, which is sprinkled with fresh bougainvillea petals and illuminated by candlelight. The property's Blackwell Rum Bar was constructed inside two limestone grottos.

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Cuevas Pedro Antonio de Alarcon, Spain

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People have sought shelter underground in Guadix just outside Granada since the fifteenth century during the period known as the Reconquista. Today the Cuevas Pedro Antonio de Alarcon offers 23 cave rooms that are dug into the soft clay.  These unique accommodation options, which maintain a constant temperature of between 18 and 20 degrees, feature two and three double rooms that are perfect for families and groups of friends travelling together. There's even a cave room with a jacuzzi.

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Gamirasu Cave Hotel, Turkey

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The Gamirasu Cave Hotel was constructed around a 1000 year old Byzantine monastic retreat in Ayvali near Urgup. Each of the unique cave rooms were part of seven houses that have been immaculately restored to modern standards. Interestingly, the volcanic rock, which is known as tufa, keeps the temperature constant at between 17 and 20 degrees year round.

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Hotel Ristorante Grotta Palazzese , Polignano A Mare, Italy

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Situated on the east coast of Italy at Polignano A Mare just south of Bari and overlooking the stunning Adriatic Sea, the centrepiece of the Hotel Risorante Grotto Palazzese is a massive limestone cavern that's been transformed into a beautiful restaurant. The caves of Polignano a Mare have long been on travellers' itineraries - Giovanna, the Queen of Hungary found solace in the caverns and many French and British adventure seekers included these impressive caves on their Grand Tour.

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Museum Hotel, Turkey

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Hittities, Persians and early Christian Romans lived in the caves that are now part of Cappadocia's Museum Hotel. Each room has its own story to tell such as the Castle Cave that was part of the original castle complex or the Kandilli Cave that was named after the oil lamp that was discovered during the restoration process. There's also the Direkli Cave that has a carved rock pillar as its centrepiece; in Turkish direk means column and the Shephard's Cave Suite that, in a by-gone era, used to house a shepherd from Uchisar.

Lyndon Barnett

Guided by curiosity and a sense of adventure, Lyndon travelled independently to 69 countries on six continents. As such, travel is Lyndon's only addiction. He enjoys with equal measure - scaling the peaks of a South American mountain at altitude, attending opera in a European Opera House or hunting for a bargain in an Asian market.