Erawan Cave near Nong Bua Lamphu
This beautiful cave is located just in the off the beaten province Loei in North-East Thailand, about 25-km west of Nong Bua Lamphu. The "Erawan Cave" (also called "Elephant Cave") is part of an limestone mountains range (Karsten mountains) and of course there are caves. But this a a very big cave and is actually considered to be a temple. At the foot of the mountain is a temple and it takes 611 steps to go up to the entrance of the cave, that is guarded by a huge sitting Buddha. As there are no drinks for sale along the way or on top, you might take something to drink with you from one of the shops at the parking place.
The stairs going up are good & easy walking, but still 611 steps! But there are a few sala's to take a rest and enjoy the beautiful view. The cave itself has a reasonable good walking path and some stairs. The cave has electric light so you do not really need a light with you (although it could be handy as at some places the floor is dark). Walking up took us about 20 min. The cambers inside are huge and lit up by colored lights. Unfortunately of course I did not have a good camera with me so it are only photos of the entrance part where there was enough light. The walking path leads to the other side where is an exit of the cave. From here you have again a beautiful view over rice-fields. But there is no way to go down here, you will have to walk the same way back.
The cave is open 7 days a week, from 8:00 to 17:00. You do not need a guide. There is no entrance fee, but of course you can make a donation to the temple.