Meditating Monk Trapped in Flooded Cave Freed by Thai Rescue Divers

thai monk rescue 1000

The monk was fitted with scuba gear and swum out of the cave (Photo: PBS News)

In a tale reminiscent of the extraordinary 2018 rescue of the stranded Thai youth football team, Thai divers have rescued a monk from the Phra Sai Ngam cave in Phitsanulok, lower northern Thailand.

46-year-old Phra Ajarn Manas, a Buddhist monk on a pilgrimage from another province in Thailand, entered the cave on Saturday, 3 April to meditate, but became trapped by a flash flood after unexpected heavy rainfall on the Sunday. Local villagers alerted the authorities on Tuesday after Phra Manas failed to return from the cave following the rains.

thai monk rescue 1000 2

Phra Manas after walking free from the cave (Photo: PBS News)

A total of seventeen volunteer divers from the Prasatbunyasathan foundation rescue team, plus police and other officials were involved in the rescue operation. They initially entered the cave system to search for the monk on Tuesday afternoon, but had to withdraw after rising floodwaters impeded their progress.

The monk was located early on Wednesday morning, with the team officially announcing his rescue at 11:30 am. Phra Manas was said to be suffering from exhaustion but walked free from the cave and was taken to hospital for routine checks.

The Phra Sai Ngam cave is approximately 400km south of the Chiang Rai cave system where, in 2018, 12 Thai youth footballers and their coach were trapped for nineteen days before being rescued.


digital dive gif



Love diving? You'll love these. Sign up today to immediately download our unique FREE gifts -

AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 WRECKS - DIVE's 70-page, beautifully illustrated, colour guide to the world’s best wrecks

SCUBA STORIES - DIVE's collection f real life stories where divers, who have got themselves into perilous situations, describe how they reacted and what actions they took to ensure they lived to tell the tale

PACIFICHighlights of the Pacific - Dancing mantas in Hawaii • The Best Diving in the World, Galápagos, Cocos, Malpelo & Socorro • Mass Spawning Events in Palau

New Upright Gift Banners 300 x 600 px

Sidebar SUBSCRIBE spring 21 large2

Destinations Spotlight

Need inspiration for your next dive trip? Try one of our featured destinations from DIVE's travel partners.

sidebar philippines sidebar bahamas sidebar mexico sidebar fiji sidebar st helena 2020 Sidebar Egypt sidebar banner sabah sidebar banner belize sidebar banner south africa

DIVE Partners

sidebar banner egypt new ceningan divers ad 300x100 LH 300 min giphy subex Wakatobi Siladen Aggressor Fisheye Dive Worldwide gozo banner Arenui

Read DIVE magazine

DIVE magazine is available to read on many devices. Simply click one one of the options below

PCMac final
Apple finalAndroid final

Like what you see?

Join us on social and keep updated daily...