Vindija Cave Varazdin is a cave located in the Velika Sutinska mountain pass. It is located near the village of Donja Voća in the Croatian Zagorje region of Croatia. The cave is a natural monument in more than one sense. It is geological, geomorphologic and botanic natural monument. Given the importance and the uniqueness of the cave, the entire greater area around the cave is under Croatia’s protection since 1964 as a paleontological natural monument.
Vindija Cave Varazdin is located at 275 meters above sea level and it has a shape of an elongated hall that is 50 meter in length. It is also 30 meters wide and 10 meters high. The ceiling of the cave is semi-circular and it has irregular elevations and vertical cracks which were caused by the formation of the cave.
The various remains that were found in Vindija Cave Varazdin range from Paleolithic up to the early medieval times. The skeletal remains found in the cave make it possible to track the evolution of the human species starting from the Neanderthals until the formation of what we consider the modern human. All of the material evidence that was found in the cave suggest that is was used as a living space from 40 000 years BC, until the 9th century.
In 1974. scientists found one of the most preserved remains of Neanderthals in the world, which are estimated to be around 33 000 years old. Due to the good state of the remains found in the cave, they were used as the main source of DNA in the Neanderthal genome project.
The Neanderthals living in Vindija Cave Varazdine manufactured various objects made out of bones and stones. Their diet included only meat, meaning that they were hunters, which suggests that they were socially organized and co-dependent.
Some of the objects and remains from Vidija Cave Varazdin are permanent exhibits at the Museum of Krapina’s Neanderthals. The exhibits include educational information about the geological significance of the cave along with the significant role it plays in the reconstruction of the early human’s history and evolution.
The location is a must see for all who are enamored with the history of mankind and those who enjoy unique geological locations.
You might also find the following links useful: