After a millennium of human use, a cave in the Thai south will no longer be open to all after it was defaced by graffiti.
The Khao Pina Cave, famous for its stalagmites and stalactites in Trang province, was found scribbled with names and nonsense soon after it was reopened along with other attractions as part of the fourth phase of reopening from the coronavirus lockdown.
Failed attempts to remove the graffiti by monks of Wat Khao Pina, the temple where it is located, means visitors will only be allowed into the cave under the supervision of volunteer tour guides.
The graffiti left on the wall feature such timeless messages such as “Si Tao,” “Sor the unlucky,” and “Fuck from Ubon Rachathani.”
Volunteer guide Sathien Srikong asked for visitors to cooperate in keeping memories of the place in their hearts – not their hands.
Khao Pina runs 250 meters high and has six levels that visitors can enter. The sixth level is engraved with the abbreviated name of King Rama VII to mark his visit in 1928.