This Is The Most Expensive Photograph In the World

Peter Lik's "Phantom," seen above, was just purchased by a private collector for $6.5 million. The black and white image captures the caved interior of Arizona's Antelope Canyon and a dusty sun-spawned apparition that looks eerily human-like. » 12/10/14 7:00pm 12/10/14 7:00pm

Sculptor carves mythic cathedrals out of New Mexico's sandstone cliffs

Sculptor Ra Paulette digs into sandstone walls in New Mexico, hand carving caves covered with shells, flowers, leaves, and abstract designs and transforming the natural features of the stone into otherworldly shrines. » 11/24/13 3:00pm 11/24/13 3:00pm

Remarkable Cave Houses, Including the Homes that Inspired Tolkien

Forget putting up four walls and a roof; these homes use the stony walls of natural and human-made caves to shelter their inhabitants from the storm. Check out these incredible rocky homes, from ancient cave dwelling to modern house, to the buildings that may have inspired J.R.R. Tolkien's Hobbiton. » 5/11/13 4:00pm 5/11/13 4:00pm

This mysterious cave was a deathtrap for thousands of years

Call it the Sarlacc Pit of the Late Miocene: A recent study by Spanish paleontologists has shown how a nasty cave entrance gobbled-up a disproportionate number of carnivores for an extended period over 9 million years ago. » 5/01/13 3:40pm 5/01/13 3:40pm

Amazing photos of death-defying birds' nest hunters in Thailand

Reader Louis Schulz recently sent me a link to an incredible set of photos by Eric Valli, a French photographer and former cabinetmaker whose work has taken him all over the world visiting, among other places, the vertiginous and mind-bending world of "honey hunters" in the Himalayas. » 10/25/12 9:20am 10/25/12 9:20am

What secrets lie within the Caves of Mars?

Back in 1954, Jerome Bixby wrote a fantastic story called "The Holes Around Mars". It was all about the discovery of series of weird holes discovered in the surface of Mars, holes seemingly punched through rocks and hills and mountains. We wouldn't dream of spoiling the ending (you can read it here.) But it's become… » 7/20/12 4:00pm 7/20/12 4:00pm

Fantastical places around the world where you can live in a cave

You don't need to be an eccentric billionaire or rugged survivalist to take up residence in a cave. All around the globe, living in an rocky recess is just a fact of life and can be way more homey than any manmade structure. Here are some real estate destinations to investigate should you attempt to cultivate that… » 1/26/12 7:20am 1/26/12 7:20am

This windowless monolith is a bird nest factory

Swiftlet nests command a high price for the thick texture they give bird's nest soup. But how does one go about farming birds' nests? By building imposing concrete towers, of course. » 1/29/11 8:30am 1/29/11 8:30am

Lava Caves Filled with the Most Beautiful Excrement in the World

For years, scientists believed that the colorful deposits found in lava caves around the world were mineral deposits, but more recently they've discovered that the collections — ranging from blue-green drips to shimmering pink hexagons — are actually microbe poop. » 11/24/09 8:30am 11/24/09 8:30am

Giant Crystals Create an Alien Landscape

This photo looks like it could have been taken on another planet - miners harvesting dilithium, perhaps. But this cave full of monstrous crystals is located in Mexico, and the crystals themselves are a form of gypsum, one of the most common elements on Earth. What geologic processes caused the crystals to get so… » 10/23/08 10:10am 10/23/08 10:10am

The Sheet Metal Retail Caves of Tokyo

In Tokyo, retail stores are turning into enormous metal caves. Here's one, installed by artist Kimihiko Okada on the ground floor of the Diesel store in Aoyama. Okada took a giant sheet of metal just millimeters thin and molded it into stalactite shapes. It looks like what you'd imagine nature might become 100 years… » 3/20/08 8:20am 3/20/08 8:20am