Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship

The Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship is situated in south-central Poland. The main feature are the homonymous mountains.

The name Góry Świętokrzyskie (Świętokrzyskie Mountains, Holy Cross Mountains) is just a typical exaggeration. There are no mountains, but hill country with typical limestone karst features. There are various rock outcrops, looking very romantic and fine for climbers. The highest peaks are around 600 m asl.

The mountain range was formed during the Caledonian orogeny, one of the oldest orogenies in Europe, which happened about 444-416 Ma ago during the Silurian. There are 650Ma old Precambrian rocks, even limestones, surrounded by younger rocks. The area is rich in copper and iron deposits, which were mined during the Middle ages.

A small area of 400 Million years old Devonian limestones on the rim of the mountains is very rich in caves. About 140 are registered at the moment. However, most of them are very small, only two of them are fairly sized.

The biggest cave of the area is Chelosiowa Jama, which is the longest Polish cave outside the Tatras, length 3,670 m. The second biggest cave of the area is Jaskinia Raj, the only show cave in the area and one of the most beautifully decorated caves on Poland.