Ayoub Cave in Shahr-e BabakShahr-e Babak
If you are looking for the grandest cave opening of Iran, you will find out that it is Ayoub cave that is attributed to Job, the prophet. Ayoub cave is located sixteen kilometers southwest of the city Dehaj, in Shahr-e Babak of Kerman Province. Ayoub Cave has formed in a mountain with the same name. Ayoub Mountain is as high as three thousand and four hundred meters, Ayoub cave is located in the height of two thousand and eight hundred meters. It is a volcanic mountain with igneous rocks. But what is the story behind the name of Ayoub cave?
There is a water spring inside the cave that now flows to outside through the piping system. In the past, people believed that Job, the prophet, who suffered from a type of skin disease, was healed after bathing in the water from the spring. Afterwards, it was called Ayoub (Job) cave.
The opening of the cave in the mountain is eighty meters and its height is sixty meters. Amongst all the caves known in Iran, Ayoub cave has both the biggest opening and the tallest ceiling. This cave is listed as a national heritage of Iran.
Ayoub mountain has dacites and andesite stones and is considered a volcanic mountain. Many ages ago, during what is known as Pleistocene Age, water has clashed lava, which has led to the fracture of the stones. As time has gone by, due to erosion by water and wind and sand blowing of the dacite stones, jags and honeycomb holes have formed on the walls.
There is another small pool in this cave that has the form of a mortar, and is called Howz-e Arezou (wishing pool). It is a local belief that if a wisher throws a stone into the pool, and the stone in turn passes through the hole in the pool, his wish will be granted. There is a platform of megaliths that has provided a resting area for the cavers. They call it Manzelgah.
The cave is about two hundred meters deep. Since it is a corrasional cave, no stalactite or stalagmites can be seen in it. But there are magnificent formations on the walls called mummies. They look like stalactites hanging from the wall. It is told that in the past they were used to heal bone diseases. To access Ayoub cave, one should take the road to Shahr-e Babak and, after fifty kilometers, turn to Dehaj.