Thailand’s Tham Luang Cave reopens for tourists in July

Tham Luang National Park, Khun Nam Nang Non, Chiang Rai. (Photo: Tham Luang National Park, Nam Nang Non)

Safety measures are being implemented ahead of the Tham Luang Cave site’s reopening in July, as announced by Thailand‘s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, Bangkok Post reported. The cave gained international attention in 2018 when 12 young Wild Boars football players and their coach were trapped inside for 18 days due to flooding before being successfully rescued.

Atthaphon Charoenchansa, director-general of the Marine and Coastal Resources Department, will visit the Tham Luang-Khun Nam Nang Non-National Park in the Mae Sai district of Chiang Rai province this weekend. Accompanying him are Chaiwat Limlikhit-aksorn, director of the National Park Office; Chutidech Kamonnachanut, director of the Conservation Area Administration Office 15 Chiang Rai; and Vernon Unsworth, a British cave diver who participated in the rescue mission.

An event commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Tham Luang Cave rescue will be held, according to Charoenchansa. He noted that the cave has become a popular tourist destination among international travellers, but its interior is vulnerable and difficult to navigate, making sightseeing a challenge.

As a result, specific measures will be put in place for those wishing to explore the Tham Luang Cave. Currently, only the exhibition zone and the area in front of the cave are open to the public. In July, the national park will permit entry to the first cave chamber, which is around 150 metres long. Each tour group will be limited to a maximum of 25 people, with each round lasting 30 minutes.

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Authorities will only allow 16 rounds, or up to 400 tourists, to enter the chamber per day. For the second chamber, only four groups of 15 people each will be permitted to visit daily, with entry applications required at least one week in advance. As for the third chamber, only researchers and experts will be granted access, and they must submit a letter to the department at least 30 days in advance.

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Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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