Photographed by Mark Jones
Vast subterranean caverns deep beneath Southeast Asia are vividly portrayed in all their spectacular beauty by photographer Mark Jones. Dedicated to his craft, Mark hikes for hours through remote jungles in Thailand, Vietnam and Laos before leaving daylight behind to descend into this mysterious little-seen primordial world. His images reveal silent landscapes of majestic cathedrallike limestone formations, where the only inhabitants are roosting bats, giant fish lurking in still rivers, and spiders the size of dinner plates. Some of these caverns contain Buddhist statues, reflecting the religious reverence they command among local populations. Pictured above, the soft daylight illuminates the vast underground riverscape of Khoun Xe Cave in Laos.
Eerie stalactite formations stand sentinel in Vietnam’s Ngum Ngao Cave
The silent expanse of Khon Lor Cave in Laos
Wat Kai Lon Cave in Thailand is an underground Buddhist shrine
Roosting bats hang from the roof of Thailand’s Daowadung Cave
Daylight streams into Thailand’s Praya Nakhorn Cave to brighten its Buddhist temple