June 20, 2015

1634, 1682 NETHERLANDS (Aruba) - The caves in Arikok National Park

1634 Aruba - The Fontein Cave in Arikok National Park

Posted on 07.06.2015, 20.06.2015
Of the several caves of Aruba, three Aruban caves are well known, seen in deep crevices on the windward face of the island. All three of the caves (Guadirikiri Cave, Fontein Cave and Huliba Cave) are located in the Arikok National Park. Nocturnal bats nestle in all these caves. Located near Boca Prins, on the northern part of the island, the Fontein Cave is well known for its native Arawak drawings on the wall. The cave is accessible from an "escarpment of a terrace of coral limestone" and has a width of 3m and a height of 2metres. The entrance hall, which is open for visitors, is 4m in height and extends to a depth of 50m.

1682 Aruba - The Guadirikiri Cave in Arikok National Park

The Guadirikiri Cave (also known as Quadiriki Caves) has 150m in length and is notable for its two large dome-shaped chambers which are illuminated with sunlight through holes in the ceiling. In order to preserve the natural habitat of the cave for the bats to breed, the three one of the caves is barred for visitors. A folk tale relates to a daughter of an Indian chief who fell in love and was imprisoned in the cave as her paramour was not acceptable to her father. Her beloved one was imprisoned nearby, in Huliba Cave (Tunnel of Love), but both lovers managed to meet underground. Both reportedly died in the cave and their spirit vanished into heaven through the holes in the roof of the cave.

About the stamps
The stamps are part of a definitive series issued in 2009, and depicting Alto Vista Chapel, about which I wrote here.

Caves of Aruba - Wikipedia
Quadiriki Caves - Wikipedia

Sender 1634, 1682: Denise
1634: Sent from Oranjestad (Aruba), on 09.07.2014
1682: Sent from Oranjestad (Aruba), on 04.07.2014 

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